Churros

Richard Bertinet

Richard Bertinet

16th May 2014

Churros

This is my final bonus recipe, which is made in a slightly different way from the basic choux pastry.

In Spain if you try to walk past one of the cafés that specialises in these strips of sugary doughnut, the smell of hot oil and sugar is just impossible to resist.

Traditionally, they are made using a churrera, a pump with a special nozzle, which squeezes the churro mixture into hot oil in long, snaking, ridged rings. Once these are fried, they are snipped into short lengths and dusted in sugar and sometimes cinnamon, ready for dipping into the thick hot chocolate that is usually served with them.

At home you can use a piping bag, and snip the mixture into shorter, more manageable lengths as you pipe it into the oil. The secret is to fry them slowly at a relatively low temperature so that they get crispy on the outside, without burning, and are well-cooked all the way through, otherwise they can be stodgy.

Ingredients

  • Makes about 12 x 12 cm strips
  • 250g plain flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 50g unsalted butter
  • 5g salt
  • 20g sugar
  • Vegetable oil, for deep-frying
  • Caster sugar, for dusting

Method

Put the flour and baking powder into a bowl. Put the butter, salt and sugar into a pan with 250 g or ml water. Bring to the boil and boil for 1 minute, then pour the mixture into the flour bowl, beating well until you have a thick batter.
Fit a piping bag with a big star nozzle about 1.5 cm in diameter and fill with the batter.
Put some oil in a fryer or deep pan (making sure it comes no further than a third of the way up) and heat to 170ºC. If you don’t have a thermometer, you can test if it is hot enough by dropping in a little of the mixture – it should sizzle.
With one hand, pipe the mixture into the oil, using the other hand to snip it off every 10–15 cm with a pair of kitchen scissors.
Fry for about 3–4 minutes, turning over regularly until the churros are golden on all sides. Lift out and drain briefly on kitchen paper.
Put the caster sugar on a large plate. While the churros are still hot, toss them in the sugar and serve with hot chocolate.
Variation:
Instead of serving hot chocolate for dipping the churros into, you could make a little sauce with 100 g melted chocolate (see page 188) mixed with 2 tablespoons double cream.

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