These beignets are kind of embarrassing, so I’m just going to show them to you. Saturday breakfasts, babyyy. They pretty much look like sugared chicken wings, but they were pretty much delicious. I mean fried dough and Paula Deen? You know what’s good.
Once, I went on the second best mission trip of my life to New Orleans. My 15-year-old self was young and inxperienced in the ways of the world. For example, I was oblivious to the horror that my youth pastor must have experienced when our 15-passenger van took a wrong turn and chugged down Bourbon Street. But more importantly, I was completely unaware that the day we went sight-seeing, we ate beignets at the most famous beignet place ever, the Cafe du Monde. And so I totally took it for granted.
After making these, I regret taking that experience so lightly. These donuts are an attempt to copy what was the best unappreciated donut experience of my life. Now, beignets are a bread, so you have to deal with the yeast issue, and then you have to deal with the cutting and the frying and the artery-clogging…
But that does not mean that these were not delish.
French Quarter Beignets
Slightly adapted from a recipe by Paula Deen
1 1/2 cups lukewarm water
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 envelope active dry yeast
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1 cup evaporated milk
7 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup butter
Oil, for deep-frying
3 cups confectioners’ sugar
Mix water, sugar, and yeast in a large bowl and let sit for 10 minutes.
In another bowl, beat the eggs, salt and evaporated milk together. Mix egg mixture to the yeast mixture. In a separate bowl, measure out the flour. Add 3 cups of the flour to the yeast mixture and stir to combine. Add the butter and continue to stir while adding the remaining flour. Remove dough from the bowl, place onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth. Spray a large bowl with nonstick spray. Put dough into the bowl and cover with plastic wrap or a towel. Let rise in a warm place for at least 2 hours.
Preheat oil in a deep-fryer to 350 degrees F.
Roll the dough out to about 1/4-inch thickness and cut into 1-inch squares. Deep-fry, flipping constantly, until they become a golden color. After beignets are fried, drain them for a few seconds on paper towels, and then plate them. Sift a generous amount of confectioners’ sugar over them. Serve warm