Sufganiot in Hebrew means doughnuts, and they are the Israeli food most connected with Chanukah (in addition to potato latkes). But they are a different kind of doughnuts than the ones you find in the U.S. The original recipe actually comes from Central Europe, probably Germany. They look like the jelly doughnuts you see at DD, but they taste soooo much better. I was planning on posting my amazing sufganiot recipe ahead of Chanukah, so that you guys can actually enjoy it during Chanukah, but I didn’t get to it. I promise I’ll have it up here next year.
In the meantime, I’m posting a different sufganiot recipe, which is very quick and easy to make, hence the name ‘Sufganiot Express’. In fact, these sufganiot are very similar to Italian zeppole. They have a free- form shape and we don’t fill them with jelly, but sprinkle them with powdered sugar (and serve some jelly on the side, just in case). We love these sufganiot just as much as we love the original ones, and since they are quicker to make, we tend to make them more often during Chanukah.
2 1/2 cups flour
3 tsp baking powder
4 tbs sugar
8 oz buttermilk
8 oz plain yogurt
1 tbs brandy
1 tsp vanilla extract
Oil for deep frying
In a large bowl mix flour, baking powder and sugar. Set aside.
In another bowl, mix the buttermilk, yogurt, eggs, brandy and vanilla.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry ones, stirring them well using a whisk, until you get a smooth batter.
Fill a pot with about 8 inches deep oil and heat on high heat. To check if the oil is hot enough, through in the pot a small piece of carrot. If the oil bubbles around the carrot, it is ready. Lower the heat to medium-high.
Using a spoon or an ice cream scoop, scoop some batter and very carefully slide it into the oil. Fry the doughnuts for about 2 minutes on each side. The doughnuts usually turn on their own, and it is ok. Just make sure they are cooked long enough.
Remove from the oil and place on a plate covered with paper towel.
Tip – You may want to check the first batch by cutting open one or two doughnuts, to make sure they are not raw in the middle. If so, cook the doughnuts longer on a slightly lower heat.
Plate the doughnuts on a serving dish and sprinkle with powdered sugar.
Alternatively, you may mix some sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl, and roll the doughnuts to cover them completely.
Enjoy, and Happy Chanukah to those who celebrate!