Pumpkin Beignets

Photo by Carolyn Nicholas / Unplash

Recipe courtesy Kevin Fonzo, chef/owner, K Restaurant, Orlando, FL

Fonzo makes these addictive savory fritters to garnish his creamy pumpkin soup, but they can also be served as an unconventional appetizer or side dish.

  • 1 small pumpkin (about 2 pounds), peeled, seeded and cut into large chunks
  • Water, for steaming
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1½ cups milk
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon ground allspice
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon chopped chives
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
  • Oil for frying

In a large covered saucepan over high heat, steam the pumpkin in 1 inch of water with the cinnamon stick until tender, adding more water if it evaporates. Drain and cool the pumpkin to room temperature. Chop it roughly (approximately ¼- to ½-inch pieces).

In a large mixing bowl, make batter by combining the eggs, milk, baking powder and salt. In a separate bowl, combine flour, allspice, cinnamon and pepper. Add the flour mix to the batter, ½ cup at a time, while mixing. Mix until smooth. Stir in the chives, parsley and pumpkin.

Fill a heavy saucepan (or other pan used for deep-frying) with 3 inches of oil and heat to 375°F. Using a tablespoon, drop the batter into the oil one spoonful at a time, taking care to prevent the beignets from sticking to each other and avoiding oil splashes. Turn the beignets occasionally as they float, so all sides brown evenly. Cook for approximately 5 minutes, or until a wooden skewer inserted into them comes out clean. Remove and drain on paper towels. Season with salt and pepper.  Serves 4–8.

Pair It

“You want something with good acid to cut the fat, and something that complements the fall spices,” says Fonzo. “I would stay towards a German or Alsatian Riesling, or a Gewürztraminer, like Domaine Paul Blanck.”

Published on January 21, 2016