- 3/4 t active dry yeast
- 1/2 c water (warm, between 100F and 110F)
- 37 g sugar
- 1/3 t Salt (Table)
- 2 T egg (beaten (30g))
- 1/3 c evaporated milk
- 270 g Flour (Plain) (up to 292g, as needed)
- 17 g shortening (4t)
- oil (for deep frying)
- Sugar (Icing) (powdered, for dusting)
In a large bowl, sprinkle yeast over the warm water; stir to dissolve and let stand 5-10 minutes. Add the sugar, salt, beaten eggs, and milk. Mix well, add about 2/3 the flour and beat until smooth. Add shortening, mix well. Switch to dough hooks if using electric mixer, and blend in remaining flour. Cover and chill 4 hours or overnight.
Roll out on a floured surface to 1/4"-1/2" thickness. Cut into 3" squares. Heat oil to 360F. Deep fry a few at a time until lightly browned on both sides (you'll likely need to flip them over, so make sure to have multiple spoons or tongs or something to do that with to hand). Drain on paper towels and sprinkle with powdered sugar. Serve immediately.
Note from source: The word beignet comes from the early Celtic word "bigne" meaning "to raise." It is also French for "fritter." Beignets, a New Orleans specialty, are fried, raised pieces of yeast dough. They are dusted with sugar or topped with icing. They are like a sweet doughnut. They were brought to New Orleans by French colonists in the 18th century.
SJ Note 25 May 2011: The thinner ones seemed to cook better. Copious amounts of flour were needed for the rolling out. This made enough for dessert for two, plus breakfast for two. We put them overnight in an airtight container, and had the best success in the morning with heating them uncovered in the oven on 350F for about 10 minutes. Next time I'll put them in the container on top of some paper towel to help keep them from going quite so soft.