Ready to add a little whimsy to your autumn fare? Turn a batch of homemade cider donuts into chocolate-dipped Mickey Mouse treats. Because the donuts are baked instead of fried, there's no hot oil involved, making this a great recipe for kids to help prepare. They'll also get a kick out of glazing the "faces" and "ears.
To make the donuts, heat the oven to 325 degrees. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Set the bowl aside for now.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg, cider, brown sugar, buttermilk, canola oil, and vanilla extract.
Stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients just until the batter is evenly blended.
Fill the donut cups (for the Mickey faces) and the mini muffin cups (for Mickey ears) three quarters of the way. Bake the donuts and donut "hole" muffins until they spring back when you touch them, about 8 to 10 minutes.
Let the donuts and donut holes cool in the pan slightly before transferring them to a cooling rack.
Now make the glaze by combining the butter, milk, corn syrup, and vanilla extract in a small heavy saucepan. Heat the pan over medium heat until the butter melts. Add the chocolate and stir until it is all melted. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the confectioners' sugar until the glaze is smooth.
Set the pan over a bowl of medium hot water to keep the glaze fluid. Immediately dip the donuts halfway into the glaze and place them on a wax paper covered tray. Next, dip each donut hole by pushing it onto the end of a wooden kitchen skewer and submerging it in the chocolate (Tip: Use a fork to push it off the skewer and onto the tray once it's glazed.). Allow the glaze on the donuts to set up (30 minutes or so).
At serving time, place each whole donut on a plate and set two of the donut holes in place (at the top of the donut) for ears.