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Jam Doughnuts // 1950s

Updated: May 5, 2020

These small filled fried doughnuts can be tricky and fiddly to make. Unlike modern recipes, this doughnut is filled with jam before frying rather than having the jam piped in once the dough has been cooked through. But, should you go to the trouble, these are a delicious and traditional alternative to the oven baked variety.
Original Recipe: 'Filled Doughnuts' (Book 7, 1958)
Speed: 1 hour | Makes: 10-12 doughnuts


  • 226g plain flour

  • A pinch of salt

  • 56g butter

  • 7g dry yeast (or 14g wet yeast)

  • Caster sugar

  • 3-4 tbsp. warm milk

  • 1 egg, beaten

  • Jam

  • Ground cinnamon (optional)



1. Warm seived flour and salt in a basin and rub in the fat.

2. Mix/cream the yeast with 1tsp. sugar, add the tepid milk and the egg. Once combined, pour into the centre of the flour and mix to form a soft dough.

3. Knead well and leave to rise in a warm place until doubled in size, and then knead again lightly.

4. Divide into 10-12 even portions and roll out the dough to about ⅓ of an inch in thickness. Spoon about 1 tsp. jam into each and press the edges together to close the dough around the jam completely.

5. Set the doughnuts to one side to prove until they are well risen.

6. Heat frying oil in a deep pan until this smokes and, using a frying basket, fry a few doughnuts at a time in this.

Note: Make sure that the dough is completely closed around the jam again before frying. If there are any gaps, oil will get into the doughnut and make it too greasy to eat.

7. When the doughnuts are golden brown and cooked right through (about 5 minutes), drain and toss them in caster sugar, or a mixture of caster sugar and cinnamon if preferred.

Best eaten while still warm, but not hot!


Original Recipe for 'Doughnuts'

'BOOK 7': Good Housekeeping’s Cookery Compendium (1958, reprinted 1959)

Authors: The Good Housekeeping Institute

Publisher: The National Magazine Co. Ltd. And printed by Letterpress by Sun Printers Ltd. (Watford, England, U.K.)

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