These sweet, tiny dough pillows (a.k.a beignets) are a New Orleans breakfast tradition! And it’s no wonder - they’re seriously addicting and pair especially well with another favorite of mine - coffee.
When it comes to desserts (yes, I am calling beignets a dessert, because even though Orleanians eat doughnuts for brekkie, I consider them dessert), I always try to “health” it up a bit if I can. This…is not one of those recipes. I tested a few different variations: vegan (LOL!), refined sugar-free (WHY?), baked (NOPE.), all to no avail.
I quickly realized these babies had to be done the good old fashioned way - fried and dusted with a generous dose of powdered sugar. All worth it. Besides, everything in moderation? Quick question: moderation is eating like 10 of these at once and then taking a nap, right? Cool, thought so.
New Orleans-Style Beignets
Recipes adapted from Bigger Bolder Baking’s homemade baked beignet recipe.
Makes about 2 dozen beignets
Prep time: 3 hours
Cook time: 10 minutes
3/4 cups lukewarm water
1/3 cup sugar
1 packet dry active yeast
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup almond milk
2 tbsp honey
2 tbsp butter, melted
3-1/2 cups flour
confectioner’s sugar for dusting
coconut oil for frying
1. In a small bowl, whisk together water, sugar and yeast until dissolved. Set aside.
2. In a large bowl, whisk eggs, salt, vanilla, almond milk and honey until combined. Add yeast mixture and melted butter, continue whisking to combine.
3. Add flour and mix with a wooden spoon or your hand until dough comes together. Using your hands, form dough into a ball. Transfer dough into an oiled bowl, cover and chill for at least one hour up to overnight.
4. On a floured surface, roll out dough 1/8-inch thick. Cut into 2-inch squares. Fry dough in 360ºF hot coconut oil. (The beignets should puff up after a few seconds in the oil; if they don’t, that means your oil isn’t hot enough.) Place beignets on a paper towel-lined baking sheet to soak up additional oil before serving.
5. Serve beignets warm with a generous dusting of powdered sugar.