Buttermilk Beignets

Fluffy buttermilk beignets with a hint of cinnamon and nutmeg showered with mounds of  powdered sugar.

Buttermilk Beignets | www.themessybakerblog.com

Pronounced ben-yays, not beg-nets. Whoa, do not make the mistake of pronouncing it wrong in front of a group of New Orleans beignet connoisseurs. That’s one trip to we’re-never-going-to-let-you-live-this-down that you don’t want to join.

It only took me a hundred typos before I finally remembered that the “g” is placed in front of–not behind–the “n.” Sheesh, give me a break, beignet!

The #SundaySupper group is celebrating Fat Tuesday this week, except we’re calling it Fat Sunday. What’s Fat Tuesday? Heck if I know! I’m just in it for the free booze and all-you-can-eat beignets hidden under mountains of powdered sugar.

Buttermilk Beignets | www.themessybakerblog.com

Have you ever been to Nawleans? Am I pronouncing it right?

I haven’t had the luxury of taking a trip to the Big Easy, but it’s on my bucket list. Even Squirrel wants to go. Granted, he doesn’t want to go for the same reason I want to–food, of course–but I’m sure we can work something out. Oh, his reason? Get ready to laugh.

Gator hunting. Yup, I’m married to a man that wants to “choot” (that’s how he says it) gators for living. It’s his life long dream–I kid you not.

Every time he turns on the television, it’s a guarantee that Swamp People will show up on the screen. If I hear the man say, “Choot “Em!” or “Get ’em in da boat!” one more time, he’s going to be shipped off to live with the gators in a floating house on the bayou.

Buttermilk Beignets | www.themessybakerblog.com

Please enjoy the rest of the post while I go find a rock to hide under.

While Squirrel is off on an air boat in the middle of the swamp bating large, slimy reptiles, I’ll be sitting at a local cafe on Bourbon Street sipping a chicory coffee and enjoying a good book.

Buttermilk Beignets | www.themessybakerblog.com

Believe it or not, beignets are easy to make. Before last week, I had no idea what exactly a beignet was. It wasn’t until I did some research that I found out that beignets are pretty much just like the doughnut, minus the hole in the center. In fact, their Louisiana’s state doughnut.

Cafe Du Monde, Louisiana’s most popular destination for beignets and chicory coffee, describes beignets as “a square piece of dough fried in vegetable oil and lavishly covered with powdered sugar.”

Buttermilk Beignets | www.themessybakerblog.com

I made this particular recipe with buttermilk. I like the tang that the buttermilk adds to the soft, yeasty dough. A bit of sugar sweetens the dough ever so slightly, while the cinnamon and nutmeg add a hint of spice.

I used my dough hook to mix up the dough. If you don’t own a dough hook, feel free to use a wooden spoon and your hands to mix the dough.

I used Red Star Platinum yeast to speed up the rise time. I get a little impatient when it comes to making doughnuts. My theory is, the quicker the process, the sooner I get to devour doughnuts. I think it’s a pretty good theory.

Buttermilk Beignets | www.themessybakerblog.com

After the dough is finished rising, roll the dough out to form a 1/2-inch thick rectangle.

Buttermilk Beignets | www.themessybakerblog.com

Trim the edges with a floured knife or, my favorite, a pizza cutter.

Buttermilk Beignets | www.themessybakerblog.com

Cut the dough into large squares.

Buttermilk Beignets | www.themessybakerblog.com

The dough gets fried in canola oil that has been heated to 350 degrees F.

Buttermilk Beignets | www.themessybakerblog.com

Cook the beignets for 2 minutes on each side, or until golden in color. Use a slotted spoon or a pair of metal tongs to flip the dough.

Buttermilk Beignets | www.themessybakerblog.com

Allow the beignets to cool slightly before adding the powdered sugar.

Buttermilk Beignets | www.themessybakerblog.com

Make, make it rain! The more powdered sugar, the better.

Buttermilk Beignets | www.themessybakerblog.com

I got so excited about the beignets that I ate one right after they finished frying, one after their glamour shots, and one piled high with vanilla ice cream after dinner.

Now, I’ve never been to New Orleans, so I can’t compare them to the famous beignets from Cafe Du Monde, but I do know one thing…they’re damn good.

Think yeasty. Like, extra yeasty. They have a slight tang from the buttermilk and spice from the cinnamon and nutmeg. They’re mildly sweet with a light, marshmallowy interior. After you finish one, you’ll move on to number two. They’re that addictive.

Buttermilk Beignets

Fluffy buttermilk beignets with a hint of cinnamon and nutmeg showered with mounds of powdered sugar.

Yield: 9 beignets

Total Time: 2 hours 4 minutes

Prep Time: 2 hours

Cook Time: 4 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 packet quick-rise yeast
  • 3/4 cup hot water (110 degrees F.)
  • 2 and 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 2 ounces unsalted butter, cut into cubes and softened
  • Canola oil for frying
  • Powdered sugar for dusting

Directions:

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine hot water, yeast, and sugar. Give the mixture a gentle stir to combine. Allow the mixture to rest for 5 minutes. You’ll know the mixture is ready when a layer of foam forms at the top of the mixture.
  2. Add the salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, egg, and buttermilk. Mix on medium to combine. Add the softened butter and mix until combined. Don’t worry if a few bits of butter are floating around.
  3. With the mixer on low, slowly add 3 1/4 cups of flour one scoop at a time until the mixture pulls away from the bowl.
  4. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead in the remaining 1/4 cup of flour until the dough is smooth, about 5 minutes.
  5. Form the dough into a bowl and place in a lightly oiled bowl, turning it once to coat. Cover the bowl loosely with a piece of plastic wrap or thin dish towel. Place the bowl in a warm area and allow the dough to rise. The dough should rise to double its original size. If you’re using quick-rise yeast, the process takes about 1 1/2 hours. If you’re using active dry yeast, the process takes about 2 1/2 hours.
  6. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Gently pat the dough down to form a disk. Lightly dust the top of the dough and rolling pin with flour.
  7. Heat 1 1/2 inches of canola oil in a cast iron pan to 350 degrees F.
  8. Gently roll the dough out to form a 1/2-inch thick rectangle. Using a pizza cutter or floured knife, trim the dough to form a semi-uniform square. Cut the dough into 3 x 3-inch squares.
  9. Place a cooling rack over a piece of aluminum foil or paper towels.
  10. Gently place the squares of dough into the pan of hot oil. Fry until golden brown on both sides, about 2 minutes per side.
  11. Using a slotted spoon or pair of tongs, transfer the beignets to the cooling rack. Allow the dough to cool slightly before showering them with powdered sugar. Serve immediately.

The beignets are best if eaten directly after they’re finished frying.

Adapted from Local Milk.

All images and text ©.
Whipping up one of my recipes? I wanna know about it! Snap a photo and tag your post with #onesweetmess on Twitter or Instagram. Seeing your creations come to life makes my day!