(*) Use up to 4 cups of Unbleached Flour in this recipe. (**) Heat the fat to 375 degrees F. for frying the doughnuts.
Soften the yeast in the warm water and let stand for 5 minutes or until it "blooms" or proofs.
Put a half cup of sugar, the salt, butter, orange juice and rum extract in a large bowl.
Pour the scalded milk over the ingredients in the bowl. Stir until the butter is melted. Cool to lukewarm. When cool, blend in 1 cup of the unbleached flour and beat until smooth.
Stir in the yeast and add about half of the remaining flour, beating until smooth. Beat in the eggs. Then beat in enough of the remaining flour to make a SOFT (should be slightly sticky and light in weight).
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured board and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes. Knead until smooth and elastic (about 8 to 10 minutes). Form into a ball and put into a greased bowl, turning to grease the top of the ball of dough.
Cover and let rise in a warm draft free place until doubled in bulk. Punch the dough down, kneading lightly to remove all of the air pockets, and turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll to 1/2-inch thickness. Cut the dough into rounds using a 3-inch biscuit or cookie cutter. Cover with waxed paper and let rise on the rolling surface away from drafts and direct heat, until double in bulk, (30 to 45 minutes).
About 20 minutes before frying, heat the fat. Fry the doughnuts in the heated fat. Put only as many doughnuts at one time as will float uncrowded in a single layer deep in the fat. Fry 2 to 3 minutes or until lightly browned; turn the doughnuts with a fork or tongs, being careful not to pierce the doughnut, when they rise to the surface. Do this several times during the cooking. Lift from the fat, draining for a few seconds over the fat before removing to absorbent paper toweling.
Cool. Cut a slit through the center in the side of each doughnut. Force about 1/2 ts of jam or jelly into the center and press lightly to close the slit. (A pastry bag and tube may be used to force the jelly or jam into the slit.) Shake 2 or 3 bismarks at one time in a bag containing granulated or powdered sugar. (Your choice.) Shake lightly to remove the excess sugar.