Cinco de Mayo is coming up. That is, the fifth of May holiday that is celebrated in Mexico, and now is popular in the United States. In the U.S. the holiday is a misnomer in a way. They regard it as Mexican Independence Day, something similar to our Fourth of July. In actuality, Cinco de Mayo celebrates the Battle of Puebla in Mexico wherein the French invaded Mexico (they saw an opportunity while the U.S. was busy fighting a Civil War), and 6,500 Frenchmen cam up against 4,000 Mexicans. A bloody battle ensued, and the Mexican army won. And what began as a local celebration in Puebla, is now celebrated in most other Mexican states as well.
In the fiesta of Cinco de Mayo, traditional foods such as guacamole, tamales, and tacos are enjoyed. But, how about something different for this coming Cinco de Mayo fest? Something delicious and sweet. I'm talking about churros. Basically, it's a deep fried pastry dough also know as a Spanish doughnut. It was developed centuries ago by Spanish goat herders since it could be cooked quick and easy over an open fire. With the Spanish conquest of the Americas it wasn't long before the dish made its way up to the Southwest, where it came be known as a Spanish cruller. I like churros; always have. It's one of the best meals ever, either as a dessert or other.
1 cup water
½ cup butter or margarine
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
¼ cup brown sugar
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1. In a 3-quart saucepan, heat water, butter and salt over medium heat until it comes to a rolling boil. Add flour and stir over low heat until mixture forms into a ball, about 1 minute.
2. Remove from heat, add eggs and beat until smooth.
3. In a dip fryer or frying pan heat 1 ½ inches of oil to 360 degrees F.
4. Spoon pastry mixture into a decorator’s pastry tube fitted with a large star tip. Squeeze 4-inch strips of dough into the hot oil and fry, 3 or 4 strips at a time, until golden brown, turning once, about 2 minutes on each side. Drain on paper towels.
5. On a plate, mix cinnamon and sugar, and roll crullers in sugar mixture, and serve.
Yield: about 2 dozen crullers.
caption: courtesy of POSTRES de la Cipota