Its a rainy Saturday here in Houston also Halloween…Happy Halloween Y’all! so having much of nothing to do and trying to continue Julia’s Mexican theme I talked my mom into giving me her recipe for authentic buñuelos which are essentially fritters. Beautiful thin pieces of dough fried to perfection and sprinkled with sugar. And since day of the Dead is coming up it would be a nice little present to put in the altar we’re making. Like most recipes I get from my mom they are all by look and taste she never measures so this was a bit of homework for both of us but here goes what we came up with 🙂
This makes about 22 buñuelos and takes about 1hr 30min
- 3 Cups of All Purpose flour +1/2 cup for stretching and rolling
- 1/2 tsp of baking powder [use Clabber Girl it is the best]
- 1/2 tsp of salt [this took a bit of trial and error and tasting raw dough…but we do it so you don’t have to :)]
- 1/4 cup of pork lard or Crisco [we get pork lard from our butchers but use what you have available]
- 1 1/2 cup of lukewarm water [do not use hot it will cook your dough, do not use cold it will clump the lard]
- 1/2 bottle of canola oil for frying [you may need a little more as you work through the stack]
- 1 cup of sugar for sprinkling on top
- In a medium to large bowl mix all dry ingredients (3 cups of flour, baking powder and salt)
- Add lard slowly while mixing with your hands until all lard is added and the mixtures looks crumbly
- Slowly add the lukewarm water while kneading dough, it will start to bind and become smooth. Once dough is one big smooth ball make little balls of dough about 45g or roughly the size of a golf ball, and let rest for 10-20 minutes until a crust forms on top. While you do this grab an old sheet or table-cloth and drape it over a table, this is where you will put your dough to dry.
- Once they are nice and crusty with your fingers stretch them out into little saucers about the size of your palm and let dry on the sheet or table-cloth covered table for another 10 minutes or until crust is formed.
- This is where the work really becomes labor intensive, on a smooth surface sprinkle some of your remaining flour (remember we saved 1/2 cup) and put your little saucer and roll until about doubled but still not super thin, once they are rolled here comes the intensive part because this is the difference between a ripped fritter and a perfect one. Start pulling at the edges like if you’re gathering ribbon, this will make the thinner and easier for you to stretch the middle, once it has gotten to desired thickness stretch from the middle of your dough and it will become see through this is how you know you did it right, you can make it as thin or as thick as you want them but we make them pretty thin in my house. Once completely stretched lay out on your covered table until dry this will take about 20-30 minutes depending on weather and humidity. (I did not have my a/c on as it is unusually cool but humid day in Houston and my windows were open so I was able to watch all of Titanic before my dough was ready to fry)
- For frying pour about 1/2 a bottle of canola oil in a shallow pan or you can use a dutch oven, (I used my super seasoned frying pan its been with me for ages and nothing sticks to it anymore) Let your oil heat to 365 degrees F the same as if you were making doughnuts and add the fritter they will be really dry and look like papier-mache. if you have small dents or folds don’t worry these will get corrected in the frying process, do not try to smooth out until it hits hot oil, you run the risk of cracking or ripping your buñuelo. Fry for about 2 minutes on each side or until golden brown and put on tray lined with paper towels and sprinkle with sugar (if you want to be adventurous you can add cinnamon to your sugar about 1 1/2 tsp would be fine)
***Special thanks to my wonderful mom who has been making these for us since we were kids and for helping me do a lot of the work today so I could take the pictures**** I LOVE YOU MOM!!