Bon Temps & Beignets
The sites, sounds, and flavors or New Orleans are like none other. The beignet recipe takes your taste buds to the bustling city in an instant.
No matter how many times we visit New Orleans, it's always magical - the architecture, the history, the food! On our last visit, we enjoyed a jazz brunch at the Court of Two Sisters that was straight out of a dream - cobbled courtyard with luscious tripical flowers and exquistie music with a nearly endless selection of creaole brunch creations. Highly recommend if you get the change to go. And with mardi gras right around the corner, I couldn't help wanting to recreate a bit of that taste at home!
Mardi Gras Menu
Carnival, whether you’re celebrating in Aruba, NOLA, of your hometown, can be magically whimsical, and the last day of Carnival, which closes the month long celebration begun on the Feast of Epiphany, is affectionately referred to as ‘Fat Tuesday’ or Mardi Gras.
If you’re looking to host a Mardi Gras soiree and celebrate this season,too, here are a few tips and tricks for a sumptuous menu:
- Beignets (recipe below, but if you don’t have time, grab a box of beinget mix and chicory coffee from Cafe du Monde’s!)
- Shrimp & Grits - for a fete, I like to serve these in coupe glasses, crystal goblets or mini trifle glasses with a couple of shrimp hung from the rim.
- Crab Cakes and dip
- Bread Pudding (and you can modify this bourbon recipe by using cubed pieces of King Cake and beignets for the bread! Add a little extra cinnamon and replace the peaches with 3/4 cup pecan pieces)
- King Cake
- Locally, you can pick these up at Bread Winner’s Cafe, Copeland’s, Bluebonnet Bakery, Casa Linda, or Kroger.
- For a simple recipe at home, bake cinnamon rolls bunched together in a greased bundt pan then ice with cream cheese icing and purple, green and gold sugar crystals or create a crescent roll wreath filled with a mixture of 8 ouces of cream cheese, 3/4 cup brown sugar, 1/4 sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla.
- OR if you want to splurge, order one straight from NOLA from La Boulangerie or Breads on Oak.
- Note: Green symbolizes faith, purple symbolizes justice, and gold power.
- King Cake Blue Bell ice cream
- King Cake cupcakes - these are a snickerdoodle cupcake that mimic the flavor of the cake - just replace the pumpkin spice with purple, green and gold food coloring in the cream cheese frosting! For a little extra kick, add 3 Tablespoons of bourgon and 1/2 coup of pecan pieces to the batter)
- King Cake cream puffs - add 1 teaspoon cinnamon to the filling and spinkle with purple, green, and gold sugar crysatls.
For more great seafood recipes, check out Southern Living’s amazing creole recipes. And now for dessert - cake for breakfast in the form of these doughy delights!
Bon Temps & Beignets
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- mixer, spatula
- Large pot
- 2 medium sized bowls
- Paper towels
- 2 1/4 teaspoons yeast
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup warm water
- 3/4 cup warm evaporated milk
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 1/2 Tablespoons butter, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3 1/2 cups flour
- 1 cup powdered sugar (for dusting only)
- 3 cups vegetable oil (for frying only)
- In a medium bowl, combine the yeast, warm water, and sugar and set aside for ~ 5 minutes to foam.
- In the mixer, combine the remaining wet ingredients, excluding the vegetable oil.
- Add the yeast mixture to the wet ingredients in the mixer.
- Add in the dry ingredients, excluding the powdered sugar, which will be used to top the beignets.
- Placed the dough in a greased bowl and allow to rise for ~ 1 hour.
- Roll the dough into a rectangle about 1/4 inch thick & cut into squares of desired size (~2-3 inch squares).
- Bring the vegetable oil to 360 degrees F and fry each beiget (~ 1 minute per side) then place the beignets on a plate layered with 2-3 paper towels to absorb the excess grease.
- Sift powdered sugar over the top and serve warm!
- Note: add mini masks or mardi gras hats on top or green, purple, and gold colored sugar on top for lagniappe (a little extra).
I hope these ideas add a little extra to your day, whether at a gala fete or a simple coze at home. Les se bon temps roule at your soiree! And may the color green (faith) go with you throughout the day.