Chef's Recipes

Coffee and doughnuts

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for coffee and doughnuts by George Calombaris and Shane Delia from St Katherine's in Melbourne.

By George Calombaris & Shane Delia
  • Serves 8
  • 40 mins preparation
  • 1 hr 10 mins cooking plus setting, proving, cooling
Coffee and doughnuts
Coffee and doughnuts


  • 450 ml milk
  • 375 ml pouring cream
  • 330 ml espresso coffee
  • 12 egg yolks
  • 105 gm caster sugar
  • 6 gold-strength gelatine leaves, softened in cold water for 5 minutes
  • 100 gm white couverture chocolate, finely chopped
  • For deep-frying: vegetable oil
Rice puff topping
  • 15 gm butter
  • 100 gm walnuts, finely chopped
  • 80 gm caster sugar
  • 60 gm rice puffs (such as Rice Bubbles)
  • 220 ml milk
  • 50 gm butter, coarsely chopped
  • 110 gm caster sugar
  • 7 gm (1 sachet) dried yeast
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • 300 gm (2 cups) plain flour
  • 300 gm medjool dates, coarsely chopped
  • 1½ tbsp ground star anise
  • 100 ml brandy
Cardamom sugar
  • ½ tsp ground cardamom
  • 120 gm caster sugar
  • ¼ tsp ground cinnamon


  • 1
    Bring milk, cream and espresso to the simmer in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Whisk yolks, sugar and ½ tsp sea salt in a bowl until pale and creamy (6-8 minutes), add milk mixture, whisk to combine. Return to pan, stir continuously over low heat until mixture coats the spoon thickly (8-10 minutes). Remove from heat, squeeze excess water from gelatine and add to milk mixture with chocolate, whisk to combine. Strain, divide among eight 200ml serving glasses, refrigerate until set (3-4 hours).
  • 2
    Meanwhile, for rice puff topping, melt 10gm butter in a small saucepan over medium heat, add walnuts and stir occasionally until coated (3-4 minutes). Scatter over 20gm sugar, stir until sugar melts and nuts are glazed
    (5 minutes), spread on a tray lined with baking paper and cool, then coarsely crumble. Stir remaining sugar and 150ml water in a small saucepan over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves, then cook until mixture reaches 114C on a sugar thermometer (8-10 minutes). Add rice puffs, stir continuously to coat (mixture will crystallise), then cook until light caramel (4-5 minutes). Stir in remaining butter, transfer to a tray lined with baking paper, cool, then coarsely crumble. Combine with candied walnuts and set aside.
  • 3
    For doughnuts, warm milk and butter over low heat until butter is melted, cool to lukewarm, transfer to a bowl, stir in 30gm sugar and yeast, then whisk in eggs. Combine flour and ¼ tsp salt in a separate bowl, make a well in the centre and gradually add egg mixture, whisking until smooth and incorporated. Cover and stand in a warm place until risen by half (1 hour), then transfer to a piping bag (no nozzle), seal ends and prove for 30 minutes (bag will become tight). Meanwhile, simmer dates, remaining sugar, star anise and 200ml water in a saucepan over medium heat until water evaporates and dates are very tender (8-10 minutes). Add brandy, simmer until almost evaporated, then process in a food processor until smooth. Transfer to a piping bag fitted with a 5mm nozzle, set aside.
  • 4
    Meanwhile, for cardamom sugar, dry-roast cardamom until fragrant (2-3 minutes), then combine in a large bowl with sugar and cinnamon. Set aside.
  • 5
    Heat oil in a deep saucepan or deep-fryer to 180C. Pipe in tablespoons of doughnut mixture in batches and deep-fry, turning occasionally, until golden and cooked through (2-3 minutes; be careful as hot oil will spit). Remove and roll in cardamom sugar. Pierce a hole in each doughnut with tip of piping bag, fill with date filling and keep warm.
  • 6
    To serve, scatter coffee creams with a little rice puff topping, pile warm doughnuts on top and serve.


This recipe is from the August 2011 issue of .

  • Author: George Calombaris & Shane Delia