Beignets From Chef Patrick Fahy

January 10, 2012 3:41:17 PM PST
A recipe for beignets with caramelized apples, vanilla spun sugar, and pine cone ice cream.

Cider beignet
Dry yeast 10g
Sugar 60g
Reduced cider 70g
Eggs 250g(5 large eggs)
Bread flour 500g(all purpose flour is fine is you don't have bread flour)
Salt 15g
Butter 265g

Mix all ingredients except for the butter until a window pane is reached.(this is when the dough is elastic enough to see through) Add the butter and mix until well incorporated. Dough should have a shine. Let sit in cooler for 24 hours. Roll into tiny balls of dough, and set on a tray in a warm area (for example on top or near an oven). The dough should double in size. At this point heat canola or vegetable oil to 350 degrees F. Place the balls of dough in the oil, and fry until golden brown. Transfer to a tray with paper towels to absorb the excess oil. Cover with sugar and set aside.

Pine Cone Ice cream
2 large pine cones
250 g sugar
450 g cream
750 g whole milk
30 g milk powder
4 g salt
400 g egg yolks
100 g sugar
10 g ice cream stabilizer

Method: Bring the first sugar, pine cones, cream, and milk to a boil. Cover with plastic and let the pine cones steep until the flavor is strong. Remove pine cones and rain in the second sugar salt milk powder and stabilizer and bring back to a boil while stirring. Temper in the egg yolks and cook to 85°C . Blend, strain, and cool. Blend it again before spinning.

Streusel (edible dirt)
250 g cold butter
125 g brown sugar
125 g granulated sugar
250 g feulletine (substitute of any cereal will work such as cornflakes or rice krispies)
250 g all purpose flour
Method: Paddle all ingredients together until well combined spread onto the pan and bake 15 minutes at 350°F cool and store.

Caramelized apples
4 large apples, peeled and sliced (save the skin!)
200 g. sugar
5 g. sea salt
1 vanilla bean
50 g. Meyers dark rum
Method: Split the vanilla bean in half. Cook the sugar on high heat with the vanilla and salt until it melts and turns to an amber color. Stir to make sure it melts evenly. You will see a soft smoke. Keep the heat on high and add the apples. Stir until the apples are coated with caramel. Stand back, add the rum, and light on fire by tilting the pot towards the flame. If using an electric burner, simply use a lighter. Once the flame is gone, Pour the apples into a bowl, and place into the refrigerator until cool. Store in an airtight container.

Apple chips
Make a simple syrup. Simple heat equal parts of water and sugar to a boil. Using the apple skins, dip into the simple syrup, and rest on a wire rack to drain the excess liquid. Place in a bowl of plain sugar and toss so they are covered. Remove the sugared apple skins and place then in a baking pan lined with wax or parchment paper. Place in an oven at 140 degrees F. Let sit in the low temperature oven for 6 hours. Remove, and store in an airtight container.

Vanilla spun sugar:
500 g. sugar
250 g. water
1/8 teaspoon crème tartar (you can substitute ½ teaspoon lemon juice if you want)
1 vanilla bean
Method: You will need an open counter space with room to make a mess. Lay wax or parchment paper on the table. You will need to object of equal height. Somewhere between 3 and 12 inches. Spread them apart from eachother with about 12 inches of space in between.

Now that your work surface is ready, split vanilla bean in half and place in pot. Add water, crème tartar, and then sugar. Heat until the temperature reaches 170 Celcius (if you don't have a thermometer, simply heat the mixture until the color slightly changes from clear to an amber caramel.) Immediately remove pot from heat and let cool until it looks like it is solidifying on the sides. Using a wooden spoon (there's also a tool that works faster, it's basically a whisk without the wires connecting on top) Dip the spoon in the sugar syrup, and flick the spoon back and forth between the two objects using a fast flicking motion with the wrist. The goal is to stick threads of sugar to each of the objects suspending them in the air. Once you have a visible number of threads suspended, gently gather them with your hands, and ball them up to form a nest. Store the nests in an air tight container. Also, if your sugar syrup gets too cold, simply warm it back up on the fire. Repeat this process until you have enough.