While I’m a huge doughnut fan during Chanukah, for The Holiday Kosher Baker cookbook I wanted some new fried desserts, so I included both funnel cake and these churros. Churros are long, thin-ridged Spanish doughnuts made out of choux pastry, the dough used for éclairs and profiteroles. In Cuba and Brazil, churros are filled, just as we fill sufganiyot. Here they are rolled in cinnamon sugar, the way they are eaten as street food in many Latin American countries. This is my way of bringing international food to my Chanukah table, and they are so much easier and faster to prepare than doughnuts. Once you get the hang of the method, churros are really fun to make—perfect for a joyous holiday.
- 1 cup water
- ¼ cup canola oil, plus extra for frying
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 3 large eggs
- Cinnamon Sugar
- ⅓ cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 8 ounces melted chocolate for dipping, if desired
- Place the water, oil, sugar, vanilla and salt into a small saucepan, and stir over medium heat to dissolve the sugar. Bring to a rolling boil. Reduce heat to low and add the flour.
- Use a wooden spoon to mix the dough over the heat until the flour is completely mixed in and the dough comes together into a ball, about 30 seconds. Remove this mixture from the heat and scoop it into a medium bowl. Spread the dough around the bowl and press the dough up the sides of the bowl and let sit for about 2 minutes to help it cool down.
- Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. You will need to mix vigorously to incorporate the eggs. Press the dough into the sides of the bowl with the spoon to mash the eggs into the dough. The dough will clump up, but after more stirring it will come together. Put the dough in a pastry bag fitted with a large star tip or a round tip with points, with about a ⅓-inch opening (I use Ateco #864).
- In a shallow bowl, combine the sugar and cinnamon. Set aside.
- Heat 1½ inches of oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat until the temperature holds at 375 degrees. Place a wire rack over an aluminum foil-covered baking sheet. Hold the pastry bag an inch or two over the hot oil by reaching a little into the saucepan. With the pastry bag in one hand and a knife or kitchen scissors in the other, quickly squeeze out a 3- to 4-inch-long strip of dough and then use the knife or scissors to cut it off and let the dough drop into the hot oil. Repeat 5 more times. Cook no more than 6 strips of dough at a time.
- After 1 minute, separate any churros that are stuck together. Fry for a total of 4 to 5 minutes, turning them over after about 2 minutes, until they’re golden. Use a slotted spoon to lift the churros onto the rack to cool slightly for a minute, or until you can handle them. Roll the churros in the cinnamon sugar and serve. Do not wait until the churros are completely cool before rolling them in the sugar; the residual oil helps the cinnamon sugar stick to the churros. These are best eaten the day they are made. Serve with melted chocolate. Store covered at room temperature for up to two days or freeze for up to three months. Reheat to serve.
- Recipe reprinted with permission from The Holiday Kosher Baker by Paula Shoyer (Sterling 2013).