In the spirit of family and friends, my roommate organized a Christmas Eve dinner for some friends like us who didn’t have any family in Vancouver. The menu was set with Greek salad, a seafood alfredo sauce with spaghetti and loukoumades.
To answer the question that is coming, loukoumades are a traditional Greek dessert that consists of small deep fried dough balls served with honey, cinammon and sugar. They sounded delicious but he’s never actually made them, he’s just watched his mother do it all these years, so I decided to give it a shot and play with dough and boiling oil and make some doughnuts.
So with that, I took the family recipe and here’s what happened…
- 2 cups of warm water
- 1 tablespoon of dry yeast
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 1 teaspoon of sugar
- 4 1/2 cups of flour
*oil for frying
*honey, cinnamon and sugar for serving
Mix the water, yeast, salt and sugar and 2 cups of flour together. Mix until it’s a sloppy consistency. Cover and leave in a warm area to rise (until double in size). Mix in the rest of the flour, and mix well. Cover and leave in warm area until it doubles in size again. In a large saucepan, fill about 3/4 of the pan in oil (canola oil, vegetable oil) and heat until very hot. Wet a spoon and scoop a small amount of the dough, dip GENTLY into the oil. Fry a few balls (5-10) at a time… Fry until the balls swell and become golden. If they fry too quickly, reduce heat. Scoop them out and place them on a plate with paper to absorb the oil. Heat honey in a small saucepan to make it less sticky. Pour honey and sprinkle cinnamon and sugar over them and serve while hot.
I had never used yeast before. I knew I needed to dissolve it in warm water, but I’m not sure if it was too warm or not warm enough, because I didn’t quite get the doubling in size effect. And I didn’t get the sloppy consistency either when I mixed it all together. I contemplated adding more water, but I didn’t want to stray away from the recipe and potentially make matters worse!
However…I persevered because I had a dessert to prepare and serve (only if it was good). I dealt with one more speed bump which was to figure out the correct temperature of the oil for a golden brown color rather than the color of “burnt”. Once I got the temperature correct, I pulled one out, cut it in half and took a bite. It wasn’t quite as light and fluffy as I had hoped, so I called in my roommate for the official Greek inspection. They weren’t quite like his mother’s but I got the approval that they passed inspection!
So with that, the loukoumades were drizzled with honey, sprinkled with cinnammon and dusted with icing sugar and since every one of the 40 or so were gobbled up…well, enough said, right? Well, the one we left out for Santa was gone the next morning, so I guess he approved too!