Created by ellie on September 28, 2021
Step 1: To make the syrup: in a saucepan over medium heat add the first 8 ingredients (-aniseed) plus 1 1/4 cups water to a boil; reduce heat to medium low and cook stirring occasionally for 40-50 minutes or until syrup is reduced by a third. Strain into a medium bowl and let cool. ***syrup can be made one week ahead; covered and chilled. Bring to room temperature before using.
Step 2: To make the doughnuts: place cardamom and aniseed in a cheesecloth or spice bag and tie with kitchen twine. Place in a saucepan and add 2 cups water. Place over medium heat and bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium low and simmer for 5 minutes.
Step 3: Add the sweet potatoes to the pan and cook for 15-20 minutes or until fork-tender; remove sachet and drain the sweet potatoes; reserving 1/4 cup of cooking liquid. Let the cooking liquid cool.
Step 4: Meanwhile, in a food processor or blender puree the sweet potatoes until smooth and then scrape the sweet potatoes into a large bowl.
Step 5: In the reserved cooking liquid which has cooled to room temperature, whisk in the yeast and sugar and then whisk all the liquid into the sweet potatoes. Stir in flour and salt, stirring until a sticky dough comes together ( 5 minutes). Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let dough rise in a warm draft free place for 1 hour or chill overnight.
Step 6: When ready to fry the doughnuts, fill a pot that has a thermometer; pour in oil until it comes 2 inches up the sides. Over medium high heat heat the oil until the thermometer registers 325 degrees F.
Step 7: In a small bowl combine 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt and 1/4 cup water, stirring until the salt dissolves. Dip your hands in the salt water and then punch down the dough. Pinch off a golf-ball size piece of dough, roll into a ball and flatten slightly. Push your thumb through center to create a hole. Carefully slide it into the oil. Using a chopstick or wooden skewer in the hole, spin the doughnut around to widen hole slightly and set the shape. Fry until it is a deep orange -brown and crisp (5 minutes on each side). Transfer to a wire rack and repeat process with all the remaining dough, dipping your hands in the salt water to prevent sticking and adjusting heat as needed. You should be able to fry 3-4 doughnuts at a time.
Step 8: Spoon syrup over the doughnuts, coating them well.