Saturday, December 10, 2005

Baile Rochel's "super-simple and almost healthy sufganiyot"

Baile Rochel's Back! #10

Sufganiyot is the Hebrew word for "jelly doughnuts." And I must admit that my version of sufganiyot don't have jelly, but they are deep fried, like all doughnuts. Only once did I attempt to do the "real version," and they were so disgusting, I never tried again. There are more enjoyable ways to gain weight. Fried food, deep fried food, with lots of oil fried food is traditional here in Israel for celebrating Chanukah.

Yes, Chanukah is the oily holiday, the grease holiday, because after the Greeks destroyed the Holy Temple in Jerusalem, one small container of pure oil was found, and it miraculously stayed lit for eight days, enough time to produce more oil. Of course this wasn't the simple vegetable oil we cook, bake and fry with. This was cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil produced under the supervision of the Jewish religious leaders of the time. It was not for baking. It was for use in the Holy Temple.

That's why many Jewish families light oil menorahs (called Chanukiyot in Hebrew) during the eight day Chanukah holiday, and the traditional Chanukah foods are cooked, ok fried, in lots of oil.

And now for my "super-simple and almost healthy sufganiyot:"

You can half or double this or do any percentage you want. Just keep the basic proportions. You can use whole wheat flour and brown sugar if you want to get maximum health out of deep-fried food; don't laugh, but I only use whole wheat and brown sugar.

You'll need powdered sugar for sprinkling on the finished product, though no one will jail you if you eat them bare. I never buy powdered sugar. I just put some regular white--ok, I admit it, brown sugar can't be powdered--sugar into a blender, and it gets powdery enough for me!

2 1/4 cup flour, either self-rising or if not add 2 t baking powder
1 1/2 cups plain yogurt, a low percent of fat
2 large eggs
1T sugar
1 t vanilla

a small or medium pot of vegetable oil, at least 3" or 7cm high of oil and not more than 2/3 the way up the pot

heat the oil

mix all of the ingredients

When the oil is hot enough to cook in, check by dropping a little of the batter in, and if it bubbles enthusiastically, it's ready, then you use two spoons to drop into the hot oil. Be careful, and don't drop from too high, since the oil will splash and burn you, G-d forbid! The two spoon method means that you put some batter in one teaspoon and use the other teaspoon to push it off and into the oil.

Don't crowd the pot, better make less at a time than more, or you'll find them undercooked on the underside and inside.

I must warn you. You will not see attractive symmetric balls. They will look sort of like strange creatures, related to an octopus. But they really taste good! When they're brown on the outside, and you may have to nudge them to turn over for an even tan, take them out with a large spoon and put them on paper towels to drain off the "extra oil." Sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Remember to sample the first couple to make sure they're are cooked through to the middle. Practice makes perfect, so you may have to sample quite a few.

Enjoy, and remember that they can be eaten all year, not just Chanukah.

And please let me know if something isn't clear.


Trouble said...

The carnival of the recipes is up at:

and your recipe has been posted! :)


Can you please include a link back to the carnival? Thanks much!

wendy said...

Wow - sounds very good. My grandma makes something similar and calls them "toughies." I'm not sure why.

Batya said...

they're like a deep fried pancake, since you can use the same batter for pancakes.

wendy said...

I made these last night! yummmm. I am going to post a picture over at my blog.

Batya said...

Take a look at Wendy's sufganiyot!!

webapp said...

Thanks and they actually do look symmetric. Used one extra egg and some flour when forming the balls.

Happy Hannuka from Norway!