Thin mint-Oreo Doughnut Creams

I really love making Doughnut Creams. I don’t make them as often as I used to, but I do still like their aesthetic. A seemingly perfectly glazed doughnut with cute toppings, but when you bite into it, it’s not fried dough. It’s a set mousse with fluffy cake on the bottom. Sometimes, two mousses. Sometimes, there’s a filling baked between the cake and the mousse. There’s always a surprise underneath that glaze, and that’s what I enjoy about eating them. Making them, admittedly, it takes a hot second and there is a lot of patience that goes into them. Unless you have two silicone doughnut molds(lucky you if you do, because I don’t), this process can take a while. You have to first make the batter, pipe it into the molds, bake the cakes, then cool those down completely, especially the molds, since you would be reusing those for the mousse, then making the mousse base, pipe that into the completely cooled down molds so that your mousse base doesn’t completely melt and split and turn into a curdled mess, press the cakes into the mousse base, freeze that solid, then glaze it. While it sounds like an arduous process, that admittedly can be facilitated with having two silicone doughnut molds I have to admit that the seeing the end product is extremely rewarding.

For the flavor I’m doing this time around, I went with Oreo-Thin Mint, combining two of my favorite childhood cookies. Oreos remind me of my childhood in Taiwan, because we would always get them from the 7-11 underneath our apartment complex and snack on them with cold milk in the summer (by the way, Taiwanese milk is amazing. It must be what they feed the cows, but there’s a sweetness to it that you just don’t find with American dairy products). Thin mints, they remind me of my childhood in America. My sister and her friends were Girl Scouts growing up, and I always had a fondness for them. To make sure that I had equal representation of both in this recipe, I went ahead and used Oreo cereal, another childhood favorite, to invoke the Oreo flavor. By toasting then pulverizing it into a powder, I was able to use that as a flour for baking, and to steep in Milkbar cereal-milk fashion for my mousse and mirror glaze. To summarize the layers of this doughnut cream before we jump into it, we have an Oreo cake, Oreo-mint mousse, Oreo-mint mirror glaze, fried mint, Chantilly, and Oreo sable. Admittedly, I have used fried mint in several dishes, but it’s sort of become a signature of mine to fry herbs, just to bring out that gorgeous coloration in them. With the sable, I thought it would be funny to take cereal that is inspired by a cookie and turn it back into a cookie.

Makes 12 doughnut creams:
For the toasted Oreo powder:
2 heaping cups Oreo cereal (just the O’s, no marshmallows)

Line a sheet tray with parchment and spread the cereal onto that. Toast the cereal for 3 minutes at 350 degrees F. Keep in mind that the sugars around the cereal will caramelize if you leave that in for too long. Cool down the cereal and pulverize into a fine powder. If you own a blender, food processor, or spice grinder, I recommend using that. If not, a ziplock bag and either a large pot or rolling pin will do just fine!

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For the Oreo cake:
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup toasted Oreo powder
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
a pinch of salt
1/4 cup canola oil
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon black vinegar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Mix together ingredients and transfer to a piping bag. Pipe into a silicone 12-hole doughnut mold and bake at 350 degrees F for 12 minutes. Cool completely before removing from the molds.

For the Oreo sable:
1/4 cup toasted Oreo powder
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
a pinch of salt
all-purpose flour for rolling

Blitz together ingredients into a dough. Refrigerate the dough until firm. Roll out on a floured surface into about 1/8th an inch thickness and cut out 1/4 inch circles. Transfer to a lined baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees F for 8 minutes. Cool down completely.

For the Oreo milk mousse:
1/4 cup toasted Oreo powder
1/4 cup milk
1 1/4 teaspoons gelatin powder +.1 tablespoon cold water
1 cup heavy cream, whipped stiff
1/4 teaspoon spearmint or peppermint extract
a pinch of salt
2 tablespoons granulated sugar

Puree the Oreo powder into the milk until completely smooth. Melt gelatin, sugar, and salt into the milk and bring to a simmer, whisking on low heat until thickened. Transfer to a bowl, and allow the mixture to cool down to room temperature. Fold in the peppermint extract, then the cream. Transfer to a piping bag. Pipe into the silicone doughnut mold, filling each hole up about halfway. Press the baked doughnuts into the cream and freeze solid, at least 3 hours, before removing.

For the mirror glaze:
1/4 cup toasted Oreo powder
1 cup dark chocolate
2 packets gelatin powder
1/3 cup heavy cream
a pinch of salt
1/4 teaspoon spearmint or peppermint extract

Puree the Oreo and heavy cream with the gelatin and salt. Heat up in a pot until the cream is tepid, and stir in the dark chocolate. Take off heat and allow to sit for a minute. Stir in the mint extract and continue stirring until smooth. Pass through a sieve. Once the doughnuts are frozen solid, place over an icing rack. Make sure that the glaze is no warmer than 90 degrees F before pouring the glaze over the doughnuts.

For the chantilly:
3 tablespoons heavy cream
1/4 teaspoon granulated sugar
a pinch of salt
a drop of vanilla extract

Whip to stiff peaks and transfer to a piping bag. Keep cold until it is time to assemble.

For the fried mint:
1/4 cup fresh mint leaves, stems removed and patted dry
1/4 cup canola oil
a pinch of salt

Bring the canola oil up to 300 degrees F. Throw in your mint leaves(be very, very careful since it is frier oil, and with a semi-wet object like a fresh herb, there could be potential exploding). Strain onto a paper towel and sprinkle with salt.

For assembly:
Carefully pipe two small dollops of chantilly over the glazed creams. Garnish with a sable cookie on one mound and a fried mint leaf on the other.

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