Making Beignets at Home

 

First, let us start out by saying this: if you’ve never had a beignet, you really need to remedy that situation ASAP. And if you’re unsure about what exactly a beignet is, imagine, if you would, a cloud made of fried, flaky, fluffy pastry and dusted with sweet confectioner’s sugar.

 

Is your mouth watering yet? Ours sure are! Since this week is Mardi Gras, it’s the perfect time to make this New Orleans staple. Follow along with the recipe below to make your perfectly pillowy pastries!

 

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups lukewarm water
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 envelope active dry yeast
  • 2 eggs, slightly beaten
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons salt
  • 1 cup evaporated milk
  • 7 cups bread flour
  • ¼ cup shortening
  • Oil, for deep-frying
  • 3 cups confectioner's sugar

 

Directions

First, mix the lukewarm water with the granulated sugar and yeast in a large bowl. Let it sit for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, beat the salt and evaporated milk into the eggs; then, mix the egg mixture with the yeast mixture.

 

In a separate bowl, measure out the bread flour. Start by adding 3 cups of the flour to the yeast mixture, stirring to combine. Add the shortening and continue to stir while slowly adding the remaining flour. Remove the dough from the bowl, place it onto a lightly floured surface, and knead it until it’s smooth.

 

Spray a large bowl with nonstick spray, put dough into the bowl, and cover it with plastic wrap or a towel. Let the dough rise in a warm place for at least 2 hours.

 

Preheat oil in a deep-fryer to 350°. While it’s heating, add the confectioner’s sugar to a paper or plastic bag, and set it aside.

 

Roll the dough out to about 1/4-inch thickness and cut into 1-inch squares. Deep-fry the dough, flipping constantly, until the pastries become a pretty golden color. After the beignets are fried, drain them for a few seconds on paper towels, and then toss them into the bag of confectioners' sugar. Hold the bag closed and shake to coat evenly. If you prefer less sugar, you can lightly dust the beignets with the confectioner’s sugar instead of tossing them in it.

 

Have you tried beignets before? Are you planning on trying to make them at home? Let us know in the comments below!