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Sugar Twist Donuts: the delicious Italian recipe for the typical Sicilian specialty

Total time: 30 Min
Difficulty: Low
Serves: 6 people
By Cookist

Sugar twist donuts are an easy, delicious recipe for making Sicilian sweet braid brioches. These sweet, soft and golden brown treats are typical of the city of Palermo, but now widely spread and made throughout Italy.

These sugar twist donuts are made with a few simple ingredients; all-purpose flour, granulated sugar, lard, milk, dehydrated brewer’s yeast and vanilla flavouring. Once moulded in the shape of braids, these donuts are baked in the oven, brushed with milk and finally coated with granulated sugar.

Fluffy and delicious, sugar twist donuts are perfect for breakfast, dipped in a cup of hot milk, or as an healthy and genuine kid-friendly snack. You can easily make them in no time, plain or with a filling like fruit jam or chocolate.

Tips for making Italian Sugar Twist Donuts

You can also decorate the surface with a sugar glaze and colored sprinkles.

For even more delicious sugar twist donuts, you can add cinnamon, raisins, or grated orange zest to the dough.

For a light recipe, replace lard with butter, or half of the milk amount with water.

How to store Sugar Twist Donuts

The Sicilian braid brioches can be stored at room temperature, in a simple paper bag, and consumed within 4-5 days.

You can also put them in special freezer bags and freeze them. Before tasting them, we suggest you heat them for a few minutes on a plate or in a microwave oven.

All-purpose flour
250 g
Manitoba flour
300 g
80 g
Granulated sugar
80 g
dehydrated brewer’s yeast
7 g
Vanilla flavouring
1 sachet (about 16 g)
250 g
a pinch

How to make Sugar Twist Donuts

Collect the all purpose flour in the bowl of a stand mixer.

Add the Manitoba flour.

Add the sugar.

Flavor with vanilla flavoring.

Finish with the lard.

Heat the milk and add the dehydrated brewer’s yeast.

Stir with a spoon to melt the mixture.

Start working the powders by slowly pouring the dehydrated brewer's yeast dissolved in the milk.

When the dough starts to take shape, add also the salt as well.

Knead everything until you get a smooth and uniform dough, then cover and let it rise for about two and a half hours.

After the rising time, divide the dough into ten pieces of about 100 grams each.

Shape into rounded balls.

With your fingertips roll out each ball and form some small and thin loaves about 40 centimetres long.

With each loaf, form a kind of horseshoe.

Then weave it.

Seal the final part to prevent it from opening during cooking.

Arrange the braid brioches in a pan, lined with a sheet of parchment paper, cover them with cling film and let rise for another hour.

Bake the braid brioches at 180° C (356° F) for about 15 minutes. Once baked, take them out of the oven.

At this point, brush the surface with a drop of milk.

Then pass them in granulated sugar.

Transfer the braid brioches to a serving dish and serve.

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