beignets

Beignets

Beignets

Beignets are a fun addition to any Fat Tuesday/ Mardi Gras celebration. Beignets are the official fried dough of New Orleans. These squares of fried dough are often referred to as a fritter or doughnut.

Beignets can be made with a choux pastry- like the type of dough used for cream puffs. They can also be made from a yeast raised dough. I made mine with a yeast dough.

Once fried, beignets are drained on paper towels and then tossed in a bag with powdered sugar. They are served hot, or at least warm. The fresher the better.

They really aren’t that difficult to make. The dough is soft and pliable. Very easy to handle. When you roll the dough into a rectangle to cut into squares, do your best to get the corners squared off. But don’t get too concerned. I always end up with the four corners a little misshapen. They still taste good. I use a pizza cutter to cut the dough into squares.

Beignets

1½ c. lukewarm water

½ c. granulated sugar

1 envelope active dry yeast

2 eggs, room temp, slightly beaten

1 c. half and half, warmed a little

¼ c. oil

7 -7½ c. flour

2 t. salt

Oil, for deep-frying

2-3 c. powdered sugar

Mix water, sugar, and yeast in a large bowl and let sit for 10 minutes. In another bowl, beat the eggs, half and half and oil together. Mix egg mixture to the yeast mixture. Add 3 cups of the flour and the salt to the yeast mixture and stir to combine. Add more flour, a little at a time until soft dough forms.  Remove dough from the bowl, place onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth. Return dough into the bowl and cover with plastic wrap or a towel. Let rise in a warm place for at least 2 hours. Roll the dough out to about ½-inch thickness and cut into 2-inch squares Heat oil in a deep-fryer to 350 degrees. Add the confectioners’ sugar to a paper or plastic bag and set aside. Deep-fry, flipping every 30 seconds or so, until they become a golden color. After beignets are fried, drain them on paper towels. Once you are done frying them, toss them into the bag of confectioners’ sugar. Hold bag closed and shake to coat evenly. Makes about 4 dozen.

Note: This recipe makes a lot. I cut the recipe in half when I don’t need so many. You can cut them a little smaller, if you prefer. They puff up a lot when fried.  

Warm beignets
Dough, rolled and cut. This is just half of the dough

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