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Zalaabeya - Yemeni Beignets زلابية

Updated: Feb 23, 2020

This is a treat mostly prepared for brunch or special occasions like Eid and Ramadan nights. There are many variations of this recipe. Although traditionally served with Yemeni honey or powdered sugar, these are also scrumptious with some jam or Nutella. Yum!.


2 cups room temp water

1/4 tsp salt

4 quarts vegetable oil for deep frying


1. In your stand mixer or in a regular bowl, add 1.5 cups water, 1/4 tsp salt, 1 tsp yeast, 1 tbsp white sugar and 1/4 cup vegetable oil. Mix well using whisk attachment or hand mixer.

2. Add flour in thirds while mixing then add remaining 1/2 cup of water.

3. Scrape the sides of your bowl then mix in 1 tsp of baking powder and 1/2 tsp of optional black sesame seeds. The mixture should look like cake batter.

4. Cover your bowl with a dish towel and allow to rise in a warm place for one hour or until it doubles in size.

5. Heat vegetable oil in your fryer (pot or deep pan) until a piece of bread fries when dropped in.

6. Spray an ice cream scooper with vegetable oil and use it to drop equal amounts of the batter into the hot oil.

7. Flip beignets after one side is golden brown - about one minute. Cook second side then remove and let the beignets cool on paper towels.

8. Serve hot with honey or other desired toppings.

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