I bought more dishes over the weekend. Many, many more. And some adorable potted plants. This tiny little shop in Bandra, called Ceramic Corner, is my new heaven. A good friend introduced me to it and I cannot thank her enough! Shelves and shelves of beautiful ceramics, in every shape, size and colour. Jugs and bowls. Plates and mugs. Pots and spoons.
I really am the dish lady.
The reason I went there this particular weekend, was I wanted to try churros at home, and needed a nice a plate and dip bowl to photograph them on. I came home with two bagfuls of much more than that 😀
And even better than the plates, is the fact that these churros are not deep-fried, but baked. Crisp and cinnamon-y Spanish treats right at home 🙂
When I first thought about making churros at home, I knew there was no way I was deep-frying them. Way too much guilt and I’m personally not a fan of most things deep-fried. This recipe was just what I was looking for. I halved it and still got about 20 finger-length churros. And they’re all gone 😀
They’re very quick and very easy to make except I had some trouble piping these on to the tray because I don’t have the right piping tip. What I ended up with the first time was a tray of odd, flower-patterned lines of batter which unfortunately got way too brown. Oddly, while I was wondering how to pipe it better, the husband finished off the entire tray!
I then decided not to use a tip at all, just the round attachment at the end of a piping bag or bottle, where you’d normally fit the tip. It was the perfect size and worked great! No ridges like regular churros do, but really, don’t they still look great? Yes, I think so too 🙂
I also reduced the temperature from what the original recipe states for the second batch. You need to bake these and then turn your oven to the ‘broil’ setting or whatever setting you use when you grill veggies. This helps the churros get crisp and golden-brown. In all, it’s a lot of cooking and a ton of scope for burnt churros so I’m glad I baked it at a lower temp!
The second tray was just perfect, and yes, this time I finished it off 😀
I rolled them in cinnamon sugar while they were hot and then dipped them in chocolate sauce. OM NOM NOM.
Crisp and soft at the same time, without all the oil soaked dough! What a way to spend Sunday afternoon 🙂
I’m going to share this recipe the way I scaled it down and adjusted temperatures and all of it. For those with over-efficient ovens like mine, watch your churros carefully!
What you’ll need:
1/2 cup water
1 tbsp brown sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/6 cup unsalted butter (roughly 3 tbsps)
1/2 cup flour
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
For the cinnamon-sugar to roll the churros in, simply combine cinnamon powder and powdered sugar in the proportions you like. I used a roughly 70/30 proportion of sugar to cinnamon.
What to do:
1. Preheat your oven to 180 C and line a baking tray with wax/butter paper. You could just use a greased tray too but the churros might get difficult to take off the tray.
2. Combine the water, sugar, salt and butter in a medium-sized saucepan and heat on medium-high till its well blended and the mixture starts to boil.
3. Remove the pan from heat, add the flour and stir well till completely incorporated and the mixture starts balls up into a dough. No kneading required, just the mixing will make this happen.
4. In a small bowl, whisk the egg and vanilla essence then add this to the above dough.
5. Mix well till you have a soft batter that resembles mashed potatoes and the egg is completely incorporated.
6. Spoon the batter into a piping bag or bottle and like I said, not using a tip worked great for me! The original recipe specifies exactly what kind of tip is ideal.
6. Pipe the batter onto the tray in straight lines, depending on how long you like your churros.
7. Bake for 10 minutes till they puff up a bit, then switch to the broil setting for about 5 minutes. Watch your churros like a hawk at this stage, you may need to broil for a lesser duration.
8. When the churros are golden-brown, remove from the oven, but don’t let them cool down more than 30 seconds. The cinnamon-sugar sticks better while they’re warm. If they do cool down more than needed, smear a bit of melted butter on them first. Just roll them in the cinnamon-sugar enough to coat, place them on a plate and dip in chocolate sauce or eat as is :).