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Buñuelos de Todos los Santos or All Saints beignets

>> Tuesday, November 3, 2009

buñuelos or beignets
are a very traditional pastry eaten on the 1st of November, All Saints day, in the region of Madrid, as well as in many other parts of Spain. They are devoured by the dozen in every household to celebrate this day. And this year I attempted to make my own homemade buñuelos... I wasn't disappointed.

Buñuelos are round little beignets stuffed with a variety of creamy fillings. The buñuelo dough is a choux type of dough, although it is fried instead of baked. The dough balls puff up on frying, that's why these sweet things are called buñuelos de viento, literally wind beignets, when without filling. The fried balls can be stuffed with whipped cream, pastry cream, chocolate cream, apple compote... you name it. The most classical fillings are whipped and pastry cream and I like to stick to them.

Buñuelos de viento
(Thermomix recipe, makes approx. 36 buñuelos)

  • 250g water
  • 170g all-purpose flour
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 pinch salt
  • Sunflower oil for frying (this kind of oil is often used for frying sweet things because of its very mild flavor, which doesn't interfere with the taste of the other ingredients)

Weigh the flour, mix with the baking powder and set aside. Put the water with the butter, sugar and salt in a pot and bring to a boil. Once it's boiling, turn off the heat and tip the flour mixture in one go while stirring vigorously. Stir until the dough forms a homogeneous ball and comes off the side of the pan. Check this video for a more visual explanation. Leave it to cool slightly and add the beaten eggs one by one, mixing thoroughly till you get a nice soft dough. Again leave it to cool a little.

Pour the sunflower oil in a deep pan, enough for deep-frying the beignets. Put the heat on medium. Use two teaspoons to scoop out little dough balls, smaller than a walnut, and dip them in the hot oil. The dough balls increase their size almost by four. Buñuelos are very collaborative little creatures and they turn around by themselves when one of the sides is done. So sweet of them.
Make sure they are completely expanded before taking them out, otherwise the dough could be uncooked in the inside. The buñuelos you find in the pastry shops of Madrid are perfectly round... mine weren't, but I love them all the same. They have a lot of personality and you can't tell them what shape they should end up with... When golden brown and well puffed, take them out and put them on kitchen paper. Leave to cool.

Pastry cream for filling (Thermomix recipe)
  • 3 large eggs
  • 750g milk
  • 150g sugar (better with vanilla)
  • 50g rhum
  • 60g all-purpose flour
You preferably need a double boiler for this or do it on Bain-Marie. You can thicken the cream on direct heat, only it's more risky as the cream can curdle if you overheat it, but it's quicker than the Bain-Marie method. Put all the ingredients together in a saucepan and stir, stir, stir, until the cream begins to thicken. It can take quite long, mine took more than 10 minutes in my Thermomix, heated to 90ºC. Some recipes use only the egg yolks for thickening, which make the cream thicken faster. Others use cornstarch instead of plain flour, but personally I don't like the consistency of cornstarch. Once reached the desired consistency (quite thick for filling), turn off the heat and pour the cream in a shallow dish or pan so that it cools more rapidly. Cover the cream with plastic wrap to prevent a skin from forming. Leave to cool.

When the cream is at ambient temperature, fill a pastry bag preferably fitted with a tubular tip (it makes the filling process easier) with the cream. Then pierce each buñuelo (how painful!) with the tip and fill it with the cream. This is the most time-consuming part... I ate quite some unfilled buñuelos while filling the rest... they were so yummy! If you want to eat the buñuelos straight away, sprinkle them with a lot of powdered sugar... and enjoy without mercy. I must say the cream was luscious, you could notice the flavor of the old rhum from Venezuela... delicious.

Making buñuelos is not as difficult as it seems, trust me. The result is worthwhile. Besides they include two of the basic recipes every good cook should know how to prepare: pastry cream and choux paste. It's a good chance to try your hand at it. A bit time-consuming perhaps... but, is there a better way to spend a cold Autumn afternoon?

34 comentarios:

Tasty Trix November 3, 2009 at 3:28 PM  

These are absolutely gorgeous. When I go to New Orleans, I always have at least one plate of beignets at Cafe du Monde, but I've never had bunuelos. I must correct that asap!!!

Divina Pe November 3, 2009 at 3:54 PM  

Just beautiful. Imagine having a bite of these goodies with a great surprise inside.

Tasty Eats At Home November 3, 2009 at 4:36 PM  

Oh I miss beignets, and although I've not had bunuelos, I miss those too! These look to die for.

TasteHongKong November 3, 2009 at 5:14 PM  

Loving them in my first sight.

pegasuslegend November 3, 2009 at 11:52 PM  

my mouth is watering, saw these on the food network not as nice as these but the recipe intrigued me and I wrote it down, now you have inspired me to try them thanks

Anonymous November 4, 2009 at 1:32 AM  

Oh my, those look so delicious. I may get over my fear of frying to make them.

penny aka jeroxie November 4, 2009 at 4:02 AM  

They all looks so gorgeous. Yummy goodness.

bethany (Dirty Kitchen Secrets) November 4, 2009 at 10:47 AM  

WHat lovely and delicious tradition!

Junglefrog November 4, 2009 at 5:43 PM  

They look gorgeous! At first I thought they were similar to our 'olliebollen' which we always have at the end of the year, but they are not filled with anything so this is different. It looks delicious!

Sophie November 4, 2009 at 6:41 PM  

Your bunuelos are very delicious looking!! A grand recipe well done!!

Jessie November 4, 2009 at 6:47 PM  

wow and yummy! they remind me of italian zeppoles very similar to what you made. I wish I can eat a couple of those right now

Mardi @eatlivetravelwrite November 4, 2009 at 8:17 PM  

Stunning and oh my goodness so delicious looking!

Miriam November 4, 2009 at 10:07 PM  

Tasty: I guess they must be similar
Divina: thank you!
Tasty Eats: thanksss!
TasteHK: you should try and make them
Pegasus: good luck, I'm sure you'll love them
Pink: you're a big girl, you can fry beignets... XD
Penny: thanksssss!
Beth: thanks for visiting, your blog is wonderful!
Junglefrog: sure they're similar to Oliebollen... I lived in The Netherlands, I've tried them
Sophie: thanks!
Jessie: there are similar beignets all over Europe
Mardi: thanks!

DoughGirl November 4, 2009 at 11:38 PM  

Those look absolutely delicious! Where I come from (New Mexico) buñuelos are sort of like sopaipillas with a hole pinched in the center before you fry them and then served with a spiced raisin sauce. So good!

Rabbittrick November 5, 2009 at 7:09 AM  


when I cooked mine ( I never thought to fill it up with cream.

I'm going back to the stove for this!

Diana Bauman November 5, 2009 at 1:35 PM  

Miriam, Congrats on top post!! You so deserve it! These look AMAZING!! I'm going to try this recipe out soon!

Chou November 5, 2009 at 2:08 PM  

Congratulations on top post, what great news! These look wonderful, and have convinced me I need a filling tip.

Jeannie November 5, 2009 at 2:23 PM  

WOw, fried choux pastry! They look so yummy!

Pantry Raid November 5, 2009 at 4:16 PM  

These look wonderful! I never thought of stuffing them with pastry cream before. I think this will be the next dessert for my cooking club. Thanks!!

ChoreToPassion November 5, 2009 at 5:20 PM  

Wow!! Your Buñuelos are certainly deserving of top spot!! If I didn't have to head off to work, I'd be trying these out ASAP!! Congrats!

Anonymous November 5, 2009 at 5:21 PM  

I just adore beignets! These look delightful, love the filling!

Rhonda November 5, 2009 at 7:37 PM  

Wow, just found these on foodbuzz, a tad late for all saints day but next year for sure and in the meantime will try out soon. Great pictures!

Amber November 6, 2009 at 1:54 AM  

Hello Miriam,

These little buñuelos look so good.
Lately I've been eating these little Spanish sweet olive oil crackers and I'm wondering if anyone ever fries them in olive oil? I think they would be great dusted with a little ground fennel seed too.


No-Frills Recipes November 6, 2009 at 2:19 AM  

Great post, looks yummy too, is that something like the Spainish doughnut?
Congrats on being Top 9

Rachelle November 6, 2009 at 6:19 AM  

I can't wait to make these for my husband and I am for sure making them at our next International dinner party

My Little Space November 7, 2009 at 3:09 AM  

Love love these! It looks like churos and also like doughnut, & looks like chinese doughnut too! No matter what's the name, still looks terribly good. Thanks.

Miriam November 7, 2009 at 2:21 PM  

Ooops, I let the comments pile up... bother! Thanks everyone for visiting and appreciating my recipe!

patty November 11, 2009 at 3:06 PM  

WOW! These tiny morsels of fried delicious goodness look incredible! I love anything fried up to a crispy yumminess, especially if it involves a creamy filling! Will try these as well!

sarah from Israel November 13, 2009 at 10:06 AM  

the festival of lights, hannukah is coming up soon and it is traditional to eat fried foods - your cute little bunuelos are perfect for that. It looks so delicious, especially with the cream, yummy!

Miriam November 16, 2009 at 10:13 PM  

Patty: Thanks!
Sarah: well, there are very similar confectionaries everywhere in Europe and in a lot more places, thanks!

Belinda @zomppa November 21, 2009 at 1:15 PM  

These are beautiful! If you don't have a pastry injector there another way to do it?

Sophie November 22, 2009 at 11:48 AM  

Your bunuelos look grand! a divine dessert with pure indulgence,...what more do you want????

Miriam December 1, 2009 at 1:01 PM  

Sophie: they were GRAND, if I may say so myself...
Belinda: you can make a small cut and use a larger tip. But it's difficult if you don't have a pastry bag or cookie press.

Johanna October 24, 2010 at 7:57 PM  

I'm going to give these a try this week!!


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