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Print this Recipe    BEIGNETS

1 package active dry yeast
1-1/2 cups warm water (100-115 degrees F)
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1 cup evaporated milk
7 cups flour
1/4 cup vegetable shortening
oil for deep frying
confectioner's sugar for dusting (or burying, depending on taste)

Put the warm water into a large bowl, then sprinkle in the yeast
and a couple teaspoons of the sugar and stir until thoroughly
dissolved. Let proof for 10 minutes. Add the rest of the sugar,
salt, eggs, and evaporated milk. Gradually stir in 4 cups of the
flour and beat with a wooden spoon until smooth and thoroughly
blended. Beat in the shortening, then add the remaining flour,
about 1/3 cup at a time, beating it in with a spoon until it becomes
too stiff to stir, then working in the rest with your hands. Cover
the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight in a greased
bowl.

Roll the dough out onto a floured board or marble pastry surface
to a thickness of 1/8 inch, then cut it into rectangles 2-1/2 inches
by 3-1/2 inches with a sharp knife. Heat the oil in a deep fryer
to 360 degrees F. Fry the beignets about 3 or 4 at a time until
they are puffed out and golden brown on both sides, about 2-3
minutes per batch. Turn them over in the oil with tongs once or
twice to get them evenly brown, since they rise to the surface of
the oil as soon as they begin to puff out. Drain each batch, place
on a platter lined with several layers of paper towels, and keep
warm in a 200 degree F oven until they're all done.

Serve 3 beignets per person, sprinkling heavily with powdered sugar,
and serve hot with cafe au lait.

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