Alongside crêpes and waffles, French beignets are part of the most famous dishes prepared in France for the occasion of Mardi-Gras or Carnival. The pastry usually consists of deep-fried dough and is a sort of doughnut.
Beignets originate from France and, depending on the region, can be prepared in many different ways, hence carrying a variety of names: bugnes, merveilles, oreillettes, corchevets, vautes, etc.
This page features one of the many recipes followed for making “Beignets de Carnaval” and has been adapted in order to be extremely easy to prepare.
- 1.375 g plain flour
- 3 eggs
- 75 g butter at room temperature
- 4 dessert spoons of rum or plum licqueur (licqueur de mirabelle) or other citrus based licqueur.
- a few drops vanila essence
- 100 g de sucre semoule
- a pinch of salt
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 250 ml milk
- zest of 1 lemon
- vegetable oil for deep frying
- Mix the flour, sugar and salt.
- Add the milk and the eggs one by one, then the butter and the licqueur and vanilla essence, then lastly the baking powder and lemon zest.
- Do not overmix the batter as it will make it heavier.
- Heat the oil in a heavy based pan and when very hot, drop in a dessert spoon full of batter in a ball shape. Cook until a dark golden brown then drain on kitchen paper and roll in caster sugar to de corate. Cook in batches until all the batter has gone.
- You can eat them hot or cold.
As beignets are deep-fried, the odour when cooking can be strong … remember to light candles while cooking them to absorb the unpleasant smell!