BEIGNETSEnough to serve 4 people
Beignets are a specialty of the Cafe du Monde in New Orleans, where they are traditionally served with chicory-flavored coffee and fresh squeezed orange juice.

Combine in a medium saucepan and bring to a steady boil:

  • 1/2 cup water
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
Add all at once:
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour

Stir vigorously and continuously over medium heat until the mixture combines and takes on a shine. Continue to cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes. When you remove the pan from the heat, you will notice a light crust of flour on the bottom of the pan. That's fine and it cleans up easily later.

Plop the mixture into a bowl. Add, one at a time, beating on medium speed for about 2 minutes after each addition (and scraping down the sides of the bowl as you go along):

  • 4 large eggs

The batter should be smooth, shiny, and fold over on itself in a ribbon when the beaters are lifted. Beat in:

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla

Drop the dough, a scant tablespoon at a time, into deep fat heated to 365°F. If the batter dribbles into the fat it will make interesting (but rather unappetizing) spidery shapes, so try to drop it in round globs. Fry 4 to 6 beignets at a time until puffed and golden brown on both sides. Drain well on paper towels and dust very liberally with:

  • Powdered sugar
It is unlikely that even Prince Charles could eat these without getting powdered sugar on his pants, so selection of clothing color(s) is quite important when you:
  • Eat

Bonus: Paul Prudhomme's Favorite Recipes

2nd Bonus: An unlikely place to find beignets

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