During Hanukkah, the odor of frying latkes is perfume to some but a smelly curse to others. For tips on ridding your apartment of that oil-and-onion aroma, read Brick Underground’s Out Damn Latke.
Some people fry jelly donuts, not latkes at Hanukkah. Why all the frying? Fried foods are supposed to remind you of the miracle of the eight days of burning oil when the Maccabees purified the temple in Jerusalem.
At Barbounia, Executive Chef Efraim Nahon will be frying up Hanukkah donuts throughout the holiday, from Dec. 11-19.
Want to try this at home? Here’s the recipe:
Barbounia’s Hanukkah Donuts
• 8 cups all purpose flour
• 2 ¼ teaspoon yeast
• ¾ cup sugar
• 1 cup of milk
• 6 eggs
• 1 vanilla bean (only seeds out) or 1tablespoon vanilla extract
• 2 tablespoons of brandy
• ½ tablespoon lemon zest
• 1 teaspoon salt
• ½ cup + 3 tablespoon soft butter
• Vegetable oil for frying– approximately 5 cups
• Confectioners’ sugar for sprinkling
• Optional: 1 1/2 cups strawberry or apricot jam (or other favorite jam flavors) for filling donut
Serves – 30 Large Donuts (approximately palm-size)
1. Mix together flour, yeast, milk, sugar and vanilla bean (cut vanilla bean in half and spoon out seeds) or use vanilla extract. Add in brandy and lemon zest – blend until it becomes soft dough.
2. Add salt and butter and continue blending for approximately 5 minutes or until consistency is smooth **If dough is too sticky add 2 tablespoons flour.
3. Remove dough from bowl and wrap in plastic wrap. Set aside at room temperature for at least 3-4 hours (can be overnight) until the dough doubles in size.
4. Cut into 3 equal sections. Cut each of the 3 sections into 10 smaller pieces (you will end with 30 pieces). Roll each of the pieces into a ball on lightly floured surface.
5. In a large, heavy skillet or deep fryer pan, heat oil to 350 degrees or until it bubbles gently around a small test piece of dough. Carefully slide four donuts or enough to fill pan without crowding. Fry the dough for approx 2-3 minutes on each side.
6. Remove donuts from oil and drain on paper towels to absorb excess oil. Sprinkle with confectioners’ sugar. Serve warm or at room temperature
7. OPTIONAL: When cool, you can infuse the donut with a strawberry or apricot jam by filling a pastry bag fitted with a plain tip, and using the tip to poke a small hole in the side of the donuts. Fill the centers with 2 tablespoons of jam.
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