Cardamom Sugared Pumpkin Drop Donuts with Orange Caramel Dipping Sauce


For the donuts:

  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
  • Oil for frying
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom powder
For the dipping sauce:
  • 2 cups orange juice, preferably unsweetened
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons Brandy (optional)
  • To make the dipping sauce (this, you might want to do first, because it takes time to cook and to cool down): Cook orange juice in a saucepan over medium heat, until it's reduced to about 1 cup. Add salt, brown sugar and heavy cream, stir and continue cooking until the sugar dissolved and the sauce is thick enough to coat the spoon. Remove from heat. Add Brandy to the sauce, if using, mix to combine. Let the sauce rest to cool down.
  • To make the donuts: Mix flour, baking powder and salt in a mixing bowl; set aside. In a separate bowl, beat pumpkin puree, eggs, milk, and butter until creamy. Using a rubber spatula, add dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture, fold and mix until well blended. 
  • Heat the oil in a frying pan to 375 F. Make sure it has enough oil to cover the donuts while frying. While waiting for the oil to heat up, mix sugar and cardamom powder in a large bowl; set aside.
  • Take about a spoonful of donut dough and drop it into hot oil. Continue frying in batches, make sure to fry only a few at a time to prevent overcrowding. The donuts are done when they turn golden brown. Transfer donuts to the sugar mixture, cover completely with sugar, shake the excess sugar off, and place then on serving plate. Serve donuts with the dipping sauce and enjoy!