sicilian doughnuts – light & fluffy!

Sicilian doughnutsMy paternal grandmother was the queen of doughnuts!  Hers was the precursor to what Canadian’s lovingly call timbits.  The only part of a doughnut my grandfather liked was the hole left behind from the doughnut cutter.  I can’t recall if he felt it was too much to eat a whole doughnut or he just preferred the small round ones.  As long as I can remember, my grandmother always made them timbit-style. The thing is, most doughnut recipes call for yeast which means allowing them to rise; too much of a hassle for me and as such haven’t made in a number of years.  However, that changed when I was surfing for ways to use fresh ricotta.

At the market last Saturday, I picked up a batch of Ciro’s fresh ricotta.  He asked me how I planned to use it and I told him in a doughnut.  His eyes lit up and said back in the day when he lived in Italy, his mother made the best ricotta doughnuts with grappa-laced raisins.  Once the doughnuts were cooked, she would drizzle honey over them.  I told Ciro that I had some vodka-infused kumquats and would add that to the batter.  He grinned and said he looks forward to seeing the photos.

1 cup fresh ricotta
1 cup of milk
1/4 cup sugar
2 eggs, whisked lightly
2 cups flour, sifted
2 teaspoons baking powder
vegetable oil (for frying)
1/4 cup raisins or chopped dried fruit (optional)

In a saucepan over medium heat, add milk and sugar.  Stir until sugar has dissolved and remove from heat. Whisk in eggs and the ricotta. In a bowl mix flour and baking powder and then add to the milk mixture.  Grab another pot and fill with vegetable oil deep enough to hold the batter and heat to 375f (use a candy thermometer for accuracy).  Using a tablespoon, scoop out dough then drop into hot oil. Do not overcrowd pot with dough. Cook three minutes or until golden. Remove with slotted spoon and place on a plate lined with paper towel.  Roll in sugar to coat or drizzle honey over warm doughnuts.

The Culinary Chase’s Note: My grandmother always used an electric frying pan/skillet as she found it kept an even temperature.  Keep an eye on the oil as you don’t want it to get too hot or cool below 375f. If it does, the outside will cook but the inside will be a bit sticky.  I served my doughnuts with homemade caramel sauce.  Enjoy!

sicilian doughnuts - light & fluffy!
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Ingredients
  • 1 cup fresh ricotta
  • 1 cup of milk
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 2 eggs, whisked lightly
  • 2 cups flour, sifted
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • vegetable oil (for frying)
  • ¼ cup raisins or chopped dried fruit (optional)
Instructions
  1. In a saucepan over medium heat, add milk and sugar. Stir until sugar has dissolved and remove from heat. Whisk in eggs and the ricotta. Then mix in flour and baking powder. Grab another pot and fill with vegetable oil deep enough to hold the batter and heat to 375f (use a candy thermometer for accuracy). Using a tablespoon and scoop out dough then drop into hot oil. Cook three minutes or until golden. Remove with slotted spoon and place on a plate lined with paper towel. Roll in sugar to coat or drizzle honey over warm doughnuts.
  2. The Culinary Chase’s Note: My grandmother always used an electric frying pan/skillet as she found it kept an even temperature. Keep an eye on the oil as you don’t want it to get too hot or cool below 375f. If it does, the outside will cook but the inside will be a bit sticky. I served my doughnuts with homemade caramel sauce. Enjoy!

 

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