Beignets Recipe

Yields: About 24 beignets
Prep Time: 2 hours 30 minutes (including rising)
Cook Time: 5-8 minutes

Ingredients

For the Dough:

  • 1 package (2 and 1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast
  • 1 and 1/2 cups warm water (between 110 and 115 degrees F)
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 (12 ounce) can evaporated milk
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 5 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, softened

For Frying:

  • 4-5 cups vegetable or canola oil

For Serving:

  • 2-3 cups powdered sugar

Instructions

Activate the Yeast:

  • In a large bowl or in the bowl of your stand mixer, dissolve the yeast and sugar in the warm water.
  • Let stand until foamy (approximately 5 minutes).

Make the Dough:

  • Whisk the evaporated milk, eggs, and vanilla extract into the yeast mixture.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour and salt.
  • If using a stand mixer with the dough hook attachment, add half the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and mix on low speed. Add the butter and the remaining flour, mixing until a soft, sticky dough forms.
  • If making by hand, add the flour mixture gradually, mixing until a soft dough forms.

Knead the Dough:

  • If using a stand mixer, increase speed to medium and knead for 5-7 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and elastic.
  • If making by hand, knead on a lightly floured surface for 8-10 minutes, or until smooth and elastic.

First Rise:

  • Lightly grease a large bowl.
  • Place the dough in the bowl, turning to coat with oil.
  • Cover tightly with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size (around 1-2 hours).

Shape the Beignets:

  • Once doubled, punch down the dough.
  • On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to about 1/4-inch thickness.
  • Cut into roughly 2-inch squares.

Second Rise (Optional):

  • For fluffier beignets, place the squares on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, cover loosely, and let rise for another 30 minutes.

Fry the Beignets:

  • In a large, heavy-bottomed pot or deep fryer, heat the oil to 360 degrees F. Use a candy or deep-fry thermometer to monitor the temperature.
  • Working in batches, carefully drop the beignets into the hot oil. Fry for 2-3 minutes per side, flipping once, until they’re puffed and golden brown.
  • Drain the fried beignets on a wire rack lined with paper towels.

Finish and Serve:

  • While still warm, generously dust the beignets with powdered sugar.
  • Serve immediately and enjoy!

Tips

  • Fresh Yeast: Substitute fresh yeast for active dry yeast. Use 1 1/4 oz fresh yeast, crumbled into the warm water with the sugar.
  • Room Temperature: Bring eggs to room temperature for optimum dough consistency.
  • Oil Temperature: Maintain consistent oil temperature during frying for the best results.
  • Don’t Crowd the Pot: Fry in batches to avoid lowering the oil temperature.
  • Serve Warm: Beignets are best enjoyed fresh and warm for that iconic airy texture!

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