I've been thinking about whole grain doughnuts lately. I'm not crazy enough to think that adding some whole grains turns a doughnut into a health food. A doughnut, even one with healthier grain, is still mostly about sugar and oil. But I've been playing around with whole grain baking in general, and thought, why not doughnuts? The complexity of flavor and texture that makes recipes breads (like those in "Good to the Grain: Baking with Whole-Grain Flours") more interesting should make doughnuts equally intriguing.
Today, I started simply. I substituted whole wheat pastry flour for 50% (by weight) of the all purpose flour in my Chai cake doughnut recipe ("Doughnuts") topped with a honey glaze. Wow. The whole wheat pastry flour adds a lovely nutty flavor, but the doughnuts are still light and fluffy with a subtle and pleasing crispness to the crust. I'm quite sure you could make the same recipe with 100% whole wheat pastry flour for even more wheaty flavor.
Next I'll be trying whole wheat raised doughnuts, buckwheat cake doughnuts and maybe something really crazy like chocolate pumpernickel!
What is your favorite whole grain to bake with?