Enjoy New Orleans' famous beignets without ever having to leave the house! This recipe only makes a dozen beignets, so it's perfect for sharing with your loved ones. Serve these for breakfast or your next Mardi Gras party!
My family and I took a last-minute trip to the Denver area this past summer. I had never been, and it had been years since my husband visited the area. We had a few things planned and actually tried to play a lot of it by ear, which was a bit change for us. We're normally the planning type and always plan our days around where we are eating.
My husband wanted to visit the New Belgium Brewery in Ft. Collins one day (they make Fat Tire beer). He researched restaurants in the area and found a restaurant called Lucile's. It was located in a residential neighborhood and was essentially one of the homes that they converted into a restaurant. If we hadn't have paid attention, we would have driven by it without noticing.
We saw beignets on the menu and did not hesitate to order some. Four ginormous powdered-sugar topped dough squares arrived several minutes later. These things were as big as Addie's head. Her eyes lit up and she went to town. Several napkins later, the beignets were gone. We were sad. But there was amazing Cajun food to be had.
As we finished up our meal, Addie asked me, "Mommy - can you make beignets at home? Just make them smaller." I gladly agreed to try so that's why I am here with this recipe. I found several beignet recipes that made close to 3 dozen (!) so wanted to find something with a smaller output.
To be honest, my beignets did not puff up as expected. Mine were pretty flat, but the taste and texture were definitely on point. I allowed the dough to rest for several hours, so I am attributing this to user/baker error. Addie ate hers in about 2 seconds flat and asked me to make these again. My husband tried his a few hours after I made them (he had been out golfing) and said that they were OK.
This is a recipe definitely worth trying again. I may see if rolling it into a thicker dough and cutting into fewer rectangles makes a difference.
Small batch beignets
- 2 Tablespoons warm water (105°F)
- 1/2 teaspoon active dry yeast
- 2 teaspoon vegetable shortening
- 1 Tablespoon sugar (plus a pinch for yeast proofing)
- 3 Tablespoons whole milk
- 1 large egg white
- 3 Tablespoons boiling water
- 1 and 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (plus extra for rolling)
- 2 cups neutral oil for frying (I use canola)
- 1 cup powdered sugar
In a large bowl, combine the warm water and yeast. Allow it to sit for about 5-10 minutes until it gets foamy.
In a small bowl, mix together the shortening, sugar, milk and egg white. Add the boiling water and mix well. Transfer this into the large bowl with the yeast and mix.
Slowly fold in the flour until it is combined. Cover with a damp cloth and allow it to rise for at least an hour (at this point, you can refrigerate it up to 3 days in advance and allow it to come to room temperature before shaping and frying).
Heat up the oil in a deep saucepot to 360 degrees F.
Divide the dough in half. Roll one half of the dough into an approximate 6" square onto a generously floured surface. Using a floured pizza cutter or knife, divide the dough into about 6 rectangles.
Drop the dough into the hot oil and fry for about 2 minutes on the first side. Flip and fry for about another minute. Transfer the beignets onto a paper-towel lined pan and allow to cool. Repeat with the remaining dough.
Generously dust each beignet with powdered sugar (you can place them into a paper or zip-top bag and add the sugar. Then close the bags and shake vigorously). These are best served warm.
Leftover beignets, if there are any, should be stored in an airtight container at room temperature. They will start to get stale overnight, so I recommend you eat these the same day.
Yield: 12 beignets
Source: Dessert for Two