Lemon Poppy Seed Beignets 

May 4, 2023
Created by Chef Callyn Graf
Serves 12-15 2x2 inch pillows
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 tsp active yeast
  • 1 Tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 whole lemon zested
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 Tbsp poppy seeds
  • 2/3 cup whole milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 3 Tbsp unsalted butter melted
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 1/3 cups all purpose flour plus more for rolling out
  • high heat neutral oil for frying such as canola or vegtable oil
  • 1 cup powdered sugar

Add the warm water, yeast and 1 tablespoon of sugar to a standing mixer bowl and whisk until combined. Let sit for about 5 minutes or until the yeast starts to bubble a bit. 
In a separate small bowl add the remaining 1/3 cup sugar and lemon zest to the bowl. Begin to massage the two ingredients together, releasing the oils of the lemon to infuse. 
Then add the sugar, lemon mixture, poppy seeds, milk, eggs, and melted butter to the stand mixture bowl and whisk until combined. 
Replace the whisk attachment with the dough hook attachment and add in the salt and flour. Mix on medium speed until smooth and the dough has pulled away from the inside of the bowl, about 2-3 minutes. 
Cover the dough with plastic wrap or a towel and let sit at room temperature until it has doubled in size, about 1.5 hours.  
Prior to rolling out the dough set up a stove top fryer using a wok or wide, mid side pot. Fill about 2/3 of the way up with fryer oil and heat to 335° (at altitude) 350° at sea level. 
Transfer the dough to a large clean surface dusted with flour and roll out until it is 1/2” to 3/4” thick and cut into 1 1/2” to 2” squares or rectangles. 
Add 5-6 of the beignets to the set-up fryer and cook for 1 1/2-2 minutes per side or until golden brown. 
Cook in batches until the beignets have all been fried and set on a sheet pan lined with paper towels to drain. 
Coat heavily in powdered sugar and serve. 
*Alternatively, the dough can proof in the refrigerator overnight. It will need to come to room temperature the next day and must be left out about one hour prior to use. 
**For a stronger lemon flavor, add 1 teaspoon lemon extract with the melted butter.