Apple Havarti Beignets

Ingredients for 12 servings

For the Filling

  • 1 apple, peeled/cored/sliced into thin rings (THIS slicer works well)
  • creamy havarti cheese, (Recommend Castello Creamy Havarti - Click here for coupon)
  • cinnamon/sugar mix

For the Beignets

  • 3/4 cup warm/hot water
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar, white granulated
  • 1 plus 1/4 teaspoon yeast, active dry
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup evaporated milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or extract
  • 2 cups bread flour
  • 1 plus 1/2 cup AP flour
  • 2 plus 1/2 tablespoons shortening
  • powdered sugar, to finish 
Apple Havarti Beignets

Preparation

  1. Start by adding warm water, yeast, sugar in mixing bowl and let bloom for 10 minutes.
  2. Add egg, evaporated milk, vanilla and combine.
  3. Sift together flours, salt and add about half to the yeast mixture. Combine until roughly mixed.
  4. Add shortening and then remaining flour slowly until combined.
  5. Remove dough from mixer and place on a lightly floured surface for kneading.
  6. Knead dough until smooth. Take care to not over-knead the dough, or it will toughen. Knead only until smooth.
  7. Place in a oiled bowl and cover. Let rise in a warm spot in the kitchen for 2 hours. This step is very important to forming the softness. Don't skimp on the time.
  8. Remove back to the lightly floured surface and roll out to a large rectangle, about 1/4 inch.
  9. Core, peel, and thinly slice apples into rings.
  10. Punch out circles of creamy havarti to fit in the center of the apple rings (I used a piping tip to do this - see blog post photos).
  11. Brush away all excess flour on the top of the dough.
  12. Place the apple rings with the havarti in the center on the left rectangular half of the dough, with about an inch between each to allow room to cut.
  13. Sprinkle cinnamon/sugar mixture just over the apples.
  14. Fold the right half over the left. Press between and around each apple slice to seal the dough layers together.
  15. Using a pizza cutter, cut out squares around the apples. Transfer to a lightly floured parchment paper lined baking sheet.
  16. Cover and allow to rest and rise for 30-45 minutes.
  17. Heat peanut oil (vegetable oil works too, but peanut is what I prefer) to 360 F.
  18. Very carefully pick up and fry the beignets. The best approach is to baste the dough with a ladle-- Using the ladle, pour hot oil over top of dough. This helps with the puffing. Flip as needed and continue basting. Cook until beautifully golden.
  19. Drain on paper towels until cooled slightly.
  20. Cover in powdered sugar and enjoy while warm for best results.

Notes: You can freeze these beignets after the cutting process. Place in single layer on baking sheet, place in freezer. After frozen, you can bag the squares together without sticking. To cook, remove to baking sheet and allow to proof/rise overnight in refrigerator or until puffed (2 hours or so) at room temperature. Fry as instructed.

Recipe courtesy of Southern Fatty

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