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Picarones

picarones Dessert
Picarones
  • Prep 20 min
  • Total 1 hr 20 min
  • Ingredients 12
  • Servings 15

Picarones may look like donuts, but they are quite different to make. The very soft rings of sweet potato and squash dough are thrown into bubbling pans of oil, and served soaked in molasses syrup, just like Buñuelos! Eat them with your hands (licking your fingers when you're finished is ok). MORE + LESS -

Ingredients

1
lb sweet potatoes
1
lb pumpkin
2
teaspoons anise seed
1 3/4
tablespoons active dry yeast
1
tablespoons sugar
4
cups all-purpose flour
Vegetable oil for frying

Syrup

2
chankaka pieces
2
cinnamon sticks
6
cloves
1
fig leaf
2
star anise

Directions

Hide Images
  • 1
    Peel sweet potatoes and cut into medium size squares. Peel and chop the pumpkin. Put the pieces into a heavy saucepan with the aniseed; add water to cover sweet potato and pumpkin. Cook over medium high heat until soft. Drain, reserve liquid. Process in food processor or mash sweet potatoes and pumpkin to form a soft puree.
  • 2
    Cool water to lukewarm. In a bowl place one cup of the cooking water and the sugar; add the active dry yeast, stirring until dissolved. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes in a warm place, until yeast forms a sponge.
  • 3
    Stir in potato and pumpkin puree in a large bowl; add the activated yeast. Stir in flour, mixing with your hand, add 1/2 cup of the cooking water, until the dough is no longer sticky, but feels soft and silky. Cover with a kitchen towel and let rest in a warm and quiet place, until it doubles or triples in volume, for at least two hours.
  • 4
    When dough is ready, heat a good amount of oil in a big saucepan to deep fry the Picarones.
  • 5
    This is a fundamental step and requires skill and training. Picaroneras do this effortlessly, but with a little practice, you can get similar results. Have a bowl with cold water nearby; with one wet hand, take a portion of dough and before dunking in the hot oil, with your thumb try to make a ring. Then, with a long wooden stick, turn the Picarones. This goes on, all the time. These require a portion of Picarones at a time.
  • 6
    To make the syrup: Cook in advance, needs to be at room temperature. Grate or chop the Chankaka. In a heavy saucepan place Chankaka with cinnamon sticks, cloves, fig leaf, and anise stars. Stir in water to cover Chankaka, and cook over medium heat until the Chankaka is dissolved and thick syrup forms. Drain, discarding solids. Cool. Place in jar to have syrup ready to moisten the Picarones.

Expert Tips

  • For a different syrup flavor add an orange (rinsed), if desired.

Nutrition Information

No nutrition information available for this recipe
More About This Recipe
  • Picarones may look like donuts, but they are quite different to make. The very soft rings of sweet potato and squash dough are thrown into bubbling pans of oil, and served soaked in molasses syrup, just like Buñuelos! Eat them with your hands (licking your fingers when you're finished is ok).

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