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New Orleans-Style Beignets

Jim absolutely hates breakfast for dinner in any shape or form. He just doesn’t seem to understand it, but it was a favorite treat when I was a kid and my mother made us swedish pancakes for dinner. It’s something that Jim moans and groans about so much that I’ve learned to save it for when he’s away, or the kids will ask for it on their birthdays since they have their choice for dinner then with no arguments. I do serve it with either bacon or sausage, just to make it a well-rounded sort or breakfast/dinner. When Jim was away skiing with his brother in February I took the opportunity to make beignets (pronounced “ben-YAYS”) for dinner one night. The small, light, donuts made famous in the French Quarter of New Orleans by Café du Monde.

This was a lovely dough to work with, and I’m going to try it the next time I make regular donuts and see how it works with an icing or glaze.

Angel-Light Beignets


  • 2/3 cup warm water (115°F)
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 2-1/2 tsp. (1 package) active dry yeast
  • 3 to 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • Peanut oil for deep-frying
  • Confectioners’ sugar for dusting
  • Directions:

    In a 2-cup measuring cup, combine the water, granulated sugar, salt and yeast. Let stand until frothy, about 10 minutes.

    Measure out 3-1/2 cups of the flour into a food processor. With the motor running, slowly add the yeast mixture, processing until fully absorbed. Add the cream and egg and process to form a soft dough. Add more flour, 1 Tbs. at a time, until the dough cleans the sides of the work bowl and is no longer sticky. Continue processing for 1 minute to knead. Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight.

    Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface and punch it down to eliminate air pockets. Using a floured rolling pin, roll out the dough into an 8-inch square about 3/4 inch thick. Using a sharp knife, square off the corners. Cut the dough into sixteen 2-inch squares, then cut the squares in half on the diagonal to form 32 triangles. Brush off flour with a dry pastry brush and transfer to a lightly floured baking sheet and let rise, uncovered, until doubled in size, about 45 minutes.

    In a heavy saucepan or deep fryer, pour in oil to a depth of 4 inches and heat to 375°F on a deep-frying thermometer. Add the pieces of dough, a few at a time, and deep-fry, turning as needed, until golden, about 1 minute. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels to drain.

    Sprinkle generously with confectioners’ sugar and serve hot.

    Serve immediately while still hot and just after you've dusted with powdered sugar.


  1. […] chocolate & strawberry frosted donuts, Dinner Party Donut Holes, and New Orlean’s Style  Beignets. I really wanted to try and make French crullers. I’m not generally a huge donut fan, but a […]

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