Our fourth Disney Dinner (which was thankfully not a disaster!) was The Princess and the Frog themed. We started, as always, with a drink…Bayou Queen Punch. I made one adjustment to the recipe…since we’re not millionaires, I substituted ginger beer for the ginger juice, which was prohibitively expensive. The drink was refreshing and perfect for summer!
Our main course was Tiana’s Famous Gumbo. I’ve made gumbo before, so this wasn’t totally new, but the preparation was a bit different for this recipe, and I really liked it!
For dessert, I made “Man-Catching Beignets.” It’s not the first time I’ve made this variety of donut, but it’s been so long, I’m not sure any of the children really remembered them, so they were looking forward to trying them…beignets are definitely a hit here!
This was an excellent dinner after a disappointing previous attempt…now I just have to decide what we’re having next!
I made beignets last Tuesday for our family Mardi Gras celebration (my first attempt at frying doughnuts of any kind), and I was pleasantly surprised by how easy it was, as well as how much fun! Make the dough a day ahead and refrigerate it for best results.
2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 1/2 cups warm water
1/2 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup evaporated milk
7 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup shortening
1 quart vegetable oil for frying
1/4 cup powdered sugar for dusting
In a large bowl, dissolve yeast and 1 tsp. sugar in warm water. Let stand 5-10 minutes. Add remaining sugar, salt, eggs, and evaporated milk; blend well. Mix in 4 cups of flour and beat until smooth. Add the shortening, and then the remaining 3 cups of flour. Cover and chill overnight or for up to 24 hours.
Heat oil to 360 F. Roll out dough 1/8 inch thick. Cut into 2 1/2 inch diamonds or squares. Fry until golden brown. Drain on paper towels.
Dust hot beignets with powdered sugar.. Serve warm.
I decided to go all out for Mardi Gras this year! We had pączki for breakfast (store bought…one of these years I’ll make them from scratch), red beans and rice with andouille sausage for lunch, beignet for an afternoon snack (my first-ever attempt at making donuts, and a very successful one at that!), jambalaya for dinner, and a King Cake for dessert. It was a delicious day!