Sopapillas, Finally

I’ve been wanting to master these for decades, the need heightened after making a few “sopapilla cheesecakes” and wanting something better than croissant rolls for the base of the dessert.

An opportunity arose and I’m taking it as  chance to take on two long-delayed nommies. The first, sopapillas. I hunted down this recipe in AllRecipes for sopapillas  and skimmed through the comments for potential issues. It had over 150 reviews with almost a complete 5 star rating. I’ve had great luck with their recipes in the past, so jumped in.

Because of carb doom lately, I only made a half batch to test and play with the techniques. The comments indicated that temperature was key at 375fahrenheit / 190celsius. Luckily, I had recently discovered my hot oil/candy thermometer. I bought the Crisco (I follow them to a “T” before making alterations to recipes.) and waited for the perfect window of moderate pain and empty kitchen and started in.

Batch A (on the left) rested for the recipe instructed 20 minutes, then rolled and cut with a pizza cutter (easier for my hands) and dropped in to the waiting oil at the perfect temp.

Batch B (on the right) was surprisingly easy to accomplish at the reviewer-recommended 45 minute dough resting time. I had finished Batch A and cleared the counters with time to spare for Batch B to start.

What I learned from my test:

  • I should have re-measured the temperature, I believe the oil was too hot at the end of both fry batches.
  • A wider pan would have been awesome. I could only do 4 at a time of the approximately 2″ x 2″ squares in the medium pot I was using. I dream of the giant 5″ x 3″ sopapillas of my favorite childhood restaurant, but I won’t ever bring myself to use that much oil for a sporadic-use recipe.
  • I’d dust each piece before dropping it in the oil. I ended up with the blechhhh of brown burned bits in the oil. Not cool, man. Not cool.
  • After the dough is dropped in, it sinks to the bottom. As it cooks, it rises, on its own, to the surface. It seems that the more surface exposed to the air, the more it would expand, or pillow out further. A few tests proved this to be true. The few that look circular are the ones I played the most with this effect the most.
  • I am also testing how they old up to storage, since the next batch will be made Saturday. 
  • Alongside another dessert, this half batch made PLENTY. So, a complete fresh dessert for $4 for honey, $4 for Nutella (World Nutella Day is NOT a weekend!), 2 cups of flour, 1/2 tsp of salt, 1 tsp of baking-something, 2 quarts of frying oil (although I’ll make use of this for other things, once I strain off oil through a cheesecloth).

I plan on inserting the recipe to prevent a frequent problem I am running in to, dead links. I’ll try and insert an image of the recipe here, if I can catch hubby’s eye for a few minutes. You can find the link above.


EDIT, before going in to make the final batch:
Note: I hated the oil flavor on the sopapillas so am switching from canola to coconut. Healthier anyways and I got a vat of the good stuff on sale at Costco. (Marry me, Costco!) Also, I’ll be putting the sopapillas directly ON the paper towels this time to drain. Every little bit of oil removing absorption. NECESSARY!