In 2012 I was fortunate to launch this website. And I’ve been so happy to work on lots of food writing assignments this year, as well as learn more about food photography. It’s been a great year and I want to thank all of your for your wonderful support. I can hardly wait to see what 2013 will be like. I wish each and every one of you a fantastic new year!
For years, my family has made sure to eat plenty of black-eyed peas on New Year’s Day to ensure good luck and fortune all year long. Some years we eat cooked greens, as well. It’s so interesting to discover the different New Year traditions carried out in various regions and cultures.
I’ve recently learned of a little fried treat called Bunuelos. They remind me of a cross between a flour tortilla and a sopapilla. Bunuelos are quite popular to have on New Year’s Eve to bring good luck in the year ahead. Some folks like to couple the bunuelos with a creamy cup of hot chocolate.
I just had to give this a try. I invited the family over and fried up a batch. They were wonderful! I was quite inexperienced, some were shaped like hands, others were heart-shaped, and some resembled various continents around the world. But how can you go wrong with fried dough? My family ate them and they liked them. I was a little concerned when some of the dough disks started to puff up larger than I thought they would; I feared they would explode, but all went well. They were a hit.
No one may know why bunuelos are considered to bring good luck but it’s a nice way to try! Have a happy, safe New Year. Enjoy food made fresh!
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
¾ cup milk
¼ cup butter; lard or shortening may be substituted
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 eggs, beaten
Shortening, lard, or oil for frying
Extra sugar and cinnamon to sprinkle on bunuelos as they come out of the skillet
Mix flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon; set aside. Place milk, butter, and vanilla in medium saucepan and bring to a slow boil over medium heat. Remove from heat. Temper the beaten eggs with 2 or 3 tablespoons of hot milk mixture before adding the eggs to the rest of the hot milk; this will keep the eggs from cooking in the hot liquid. Whisk together until well blended. Slowly add milk and egg mixture to dry ingredients. Mix until dough ball forms.
Turn dough onto floured surface and knead 2 to 3 minutes. Divide into 20 balls. Heat oil, lard or shortening in skillet, (oil should be about 1 inch deep). Roll dough balls out into 6 to 7 inch circles. Fry in hot grease over medium to medium-high heat. You will know if grease is hot enough when bubbles puff up on the bunuelos. Brown one side and flip to brown other side. Remove from skillet and stand upright in bowl lined with paper towels. Sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar mixture while still hot. Repeat. Makes 20 bunuelos.