I spend a lot of time on Facebook. For work, of course. And now I’m studying social at college. I’ve fallen in love with it. Social media is the new boardroom for brands. Data drives storytelling. It also drives corporate social responsibility.
For school, I had to read a book called We First – How Brands and Consumers Use Social Media to Build a Better World by Simon Mainwaring. He suggests that “social media has reawakened us to the fact that we are humans — empathetic creatures that crave connection.” We want to and can care about people more than ever before. And we can congregate around shared values. Social is peaceful activism, not loose ties. Through it, we are setting the rules for how our world is to be built. Social is for people — it’s we first.
Sugared Brioche Doughnuts
*recipe from Thomas Keller’s Bouchon Bakery Cookbook
518 g / 3 1/2 c. + 3 tbsp flour
10 g / 1 tbsp instant yeast
74 g / 1/4 c. + 2 tbsp sugar
9 g / 1 tbsp salt
212 g / 3/4 c. + 1 1/2 tbsp milk, warmed to 75 F
111 g / 2 eggs
9 g / 1 1/2 tsp vanilla paste
57 g / 2 ounces butter, room temperature, cut into small cubes
canola oil, for frying
sugar, to coat the doughnuts
Place the flour and yeast in the bowl of your stand-mixer fitted with your dough hook. Mix for about 15 seconds just so that the yeast gets evenly distributed. Add the remaining ingredients, except the butter, and mix on low speed for 4 minutes. Continue to knead the dough for a further 30 minutes. Add the small cubes of butter, one piece at a time, allowing it to be incorporated into the dough before adding more butter.
After 30 minutes, turn off the stand-mixer, scrape down the sides and the bottom of the bowl, push the dough off the hook: resume kneading on a low speed for another 5 minutes. Run a spatula over the sides and bottom of the bowl and release the dough onto a very lightly floured surface. You only need enough flour to prevent the dough from sticking.
With your hands, gently pat the dough into a rectangular shape. Stretch the left side of the dough out and then fold it over two-thirds of the dough (as though you are folding a letter into an envelope). Once the left side is folded in, repeat the process with the right side. Once that is done, do the exact same thing, working from the bottom and then the top.
Flip the dough over, seam-side down and place it in a greased bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise for 1 hour at room temperature.
Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Repeat the stretching and folding of the dough stretched and folded the dough. Return to a greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough, flipping and fluffing it into an 11-inch round. Transfer to a parchment lined cookie sheet and refrigerate for 30 minutes; long enough to allow the dough to be more manageable.
Line another sheet with parchment paper, spray the parchment with non-stick spray and set aside. Remove the dough from the fridge, and using your 3-inch round cookie cutters, cut out your doughnuts. Use a small round cookie cutter and cut the centre out of your 3-inch rounds. Save the mini rounds. They make pretty fabulous mini doughnuts.
To proof the doughnuts, cover the baking sheet with a plastic tub or a cardboard box and proof for 60 to 90 minutes. The doughnuts will double in size; or when the dough is gently pressed, a small imprint will remain.
To fry, pour 3 inches of oil into a Dutch oven or a heavy stockpot; the oil shouldn’t come more than 1/3rd of the way up the sides of the pot. Heat the oil to 350 F. Set a wire cooling rack over a cookie sheet, pour the sugar into a shallow bowl. Gently drop as many doughnuts as can fit into the pot. Fry on the second side for 45 seconds. Flip them over again and fry for a further 45 seconds, or until they are a rich golden brown. Transfer the batch to the wire rack, and continue frying more of your doughnuts. Dredge in sugar while they are still warm. Serve immediately.