Apple Buñuelos (Apple Fritters)

Sometimes looking like doughnut holes, sometimes like fried dough, buñuelos are delicious fried fritters that can take many shapes. In this version from Pati Jinich of PBS’ Pati’s Mexican Table, apple slices are baked in a buttery cinnamon-sugar syrup, then coated with batter and deep fried. They’re simply irresistible.

Prep
45 mins
Bake
12 to 18 mins
Total
2 hrs
Yield
25 to 30 apple buñuelos
Apple Buñuelos (Apple Fritters)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Lightly grease (or line with parchment) two baking sheets.

  2. To bake the apples: Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat, or in the microwave. Once melted, immediately add the tequila, brown sugar, and canela (cinnamon). Stir to combine.

  3. Place the apple slices on the prepared baking sheets and brush with the melted butter mixture. Flip the slices and brush the other side with the remaining butter mixture.

  4. Bake until the apple slices are soft, about 13 to 18 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool completely.

  5. To make the batter: Whisk the egg yolks until creamy and pale. Add the 2 tablespoons oil and beer and continue whisking until well combined. Gently fold in the flour.

  6. In a separate large bowl, using a whisk or a mixer with the whisk attachment, combine the egg whites and salt, and whip until soft peaks form.

  7. Slowly add the sugar and continue whipping until stiff peaks form. Gently fold the whipped egg whites into the egg yolk mixture, stirring until no streaks of white remain.

  8. To fry the buñuelos: Heat 1” of oil in a deep casserole or cast iron pan over medium heat, for at least 5 minutes. If using a thermometer, the temperature should reach 375°F. You can also test the oil by dropping a teaspoon of batter into it; if the oil actively bubbles all around it, it's ready. The bubbles shouldn't be either too slow or too aggressive (in a way that you can't see what’s being fried).

  9. Set a cooling rack over a baking sheet or cover a baking sheet with paper towels.

  10. One by one, dip the apple slices in the batter and gently place into the hot oil. Work in batches, adding apples without overcrowding the pan. Fry for 1 to 2 minutes per side, until puffed up and golden brown.

  11. Use a slotted spoon to flip the slices over and fry on the other side for 1 to 2 minutes more. Transfer buñuelos to the prepared rack or baking sheet to drain.

  12. Repeat until you've used all the apple slices.

  13. Sprinkle the buñuelos generously with confectioners’ sugar before serving; they're best enjoyed warm.