Unfortunately, this chubby girl has been trying to shed a few pounds and is resisting temptation. I guess I shouldn't say "unfortunately". It shows will and determination to not give into my craving, but boy am I tempted. My waistline will thank me later. My foodie heart may not forgive me. Damn if I do. Damn if I don't.
I was introduced to these tasty little delights while dining at a local Pizzeria. I describe them as an Italian version of doughnut holes only lighter. They are best served fresh out of the oil and dusted in powdered sugar and freshly grated lemon zest. My mouth is salivating at the thought of them.
This is an image of Giada De Laurentis's version of Zeppoles via The Food Network. Here is her recipe.
- 1 vanilla bean
- 1/2 cup sugar, plus 3 tablespoons
- 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
- 1 stick butter
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 4 eggs
- Olive oil, for frying
DirectionsCut open the vanilla bean lengthwise. Using the back of a knife, scrape along the inside of the vanilla bean to collect the seeds. Scrape vanilla bean seeds into a small bowl. Add the 1/2 cup sugar and cinnamon and stir to combine. Set aside.
In a medium saucepan combine the butter, salt, 3 tablespoons of sugar, and water over medium heat. Bring to a boil. Take pan off the heat and stir in the flour. Return pan to the heat and stir continuously until mixture forms a ball, about 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer the flour mixture to a medium bowl. Using an electric hand mixer on low speed, add eggs, 1 at a time, incorporating each egg completely before adding the next. Beat until smooth. If not frying immediately, cover with plastic wrap and reserve in the refrigerator.
Meanwhile, pour enough oil into a large frying pan to reach a depth of 2 inches. Heat the oil over medium heat until a deep-fry thermometer registers 375 degrees F.
Using a small ice-cream scooper or 2 small spoons, carefully drop about a tablespoon of the dough into the hot olive oil, frying in batches. Turn the zeppole once or twice, cooking until golden and puffed up, about 5 minutes.
Drain on paper towels. Toss with cinnamon-sugar. Arrange on a platter and serve immediately.
You'll have a party in your mouth devouring these delicious bites of heaven on a plate! Enjoy one for me while you're at it.