Thursday, September 3, 2015

Asian Style Beignets (ปาท่องโก๋-ish)

In Thailand we have eaten the Chinese beignets for ages and surprisingly they have not strayed too faraway from the Chinese ones, apart from shapes, maybe. We have them with savoury things like rice porridge and soft boiled eggs and we have them with sweet things like condensed milk and soft tofu in ginger syrup. Street vendors would have their big wok out in the mornings and fry these crispy beignets to the breakfast crowd.

I have tried making these away from home and they are not too bad. I do not have ammonia carbonate so I omit it in my recipe which is not a bad thing because ammonia carbonate tends to give a strong smell. It doesn't matter that my Chinese beignets will not be extra crispy.

You will need:
1 1/2 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon dry yeast
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup warm water
1 tablespoon canola oil plus a lot more for deep frying

Add sugar and yeast to warm water - add 1 tablespoon of oil, mix well and leave in warm place for 5 minutes or until frothy. In a food processor,place flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda together and pulse to combine. While the motor is running, add yeast mixture and process until it the dough forms into a soft ball. Remove the dough and place into a well oiled bowl, put cling wrap over the bowl and leave to rise in the dark warm place (I rest mine in the oven) for 2 hours.

Knock the dough down and roll on the floured surface, roll to about 1 cm thick. The dough will be wet-ish so you need a bit of dusting flour. Cut the dough into strips with pizza cutter - about 1 x 7 cm. Rest for another five minutes and then deep fry them on medium high heat until golden. Drain on absorbent paper. It's best to serve them warm but you can also keep then in the freezer and re-heat in the oven.

You can also stick two strips of dough together in the middle before frying as they do in Thailand - just use a bit of water as a glue. I am not very good at this:)

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