Saturday, January 8, 2011

Apple "Fritters"

These charming little rolls are fun to put out as part of a buffet spread - I included warm artichoke and mushroom spread, along with crackers and a plateful of these "fritters."  Then just add cocktails, or, for a fun non-alcoholic beverage, root beer is a really nice compliment to the cinnamon/apple flavor of the fritters (try the ginger root beer from Zevia, which uses stevia instead of sugar, and is therefore vegan).  Unlike traditional fritters, these rolls are never actually fried, hence the quotation marks around the title.

For the filling:
  • 1 tablespoon vegan butter
  • 3 cups peeled and diced Granny Smith apple
  • 1/2 cup apple juice
  • 2 tablespoons vegan sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
For the dough:
  • 2 packages dry yeast (about 4 and 1/2 teaspoons)
  • 1 cup warm non-dairy milk (between 100 and 110 degrees)
  • 5 cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 2/3 cup vegan sugar
  • 3 tablespoons melted vegan butter
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 Ener-G eggs
  • Cooking spray
For the glaze:
  • 1 cup vegan powdered sugar
  • 4 teaspoons melted vegan butter
  • 1 tablespoon apple juice
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1. To make the filling, melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Add the apple, and saute for 3 minutes.  Add 1/2 cup apple juice, 2 tablespoons sugar, and 1 teaspoon cinnamon; reduce the heat and cook until the liquid is almost all absorbed - anywhere from 3-8 minutes, depending how fast your liquid evaporates off.  Remove from the burner and cool.

2. To make the dough, dissolve the yeast in the warm milk; let stand for 5 minutes until very foamy.  Lightly spoon the flour into dry measuring cups and level with a knife.  Add 3 and 1/2 cups flour, 2/3 cup sugar, 3 tablespoons melted butter, the salt, and the Ener-G eggs to the yeast mixture, stirring until smooth.  Add an additional 1 cup flour and stir until a dough forms.

3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes, adding enough of the remaining flour 1 tablespoon at a time, to prevent the dough from sticking to your hands.  For a quick kneading reminder, see this link:

4. Place the dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray, turning so the top of the dough is coated as well.  Cover and let rise for 1 and 1/2 hours - it should be doubled in size by the end.  As always, my favorite place to let dough rise is an unheated, closed oven where it will be warm and free from drafts.

5. Punch the dough down and let it rest for 5 minutes, then divide into 24 equal portions.  Working with one portion at a time, roll into a 3-inch circle on a lightly floured surface.  Spoon a little less than a tablespoon of the apple filling into the center of the circle, and gather up the dough to form a ball over the filling, pinching the seam to seal.  Place, seam side down, in a muffin cup coated with cooking spray.  Repeat the procedure with the remaining dough and filling, making sure to keep the dough you're not currently working with covered, to prevent it from drying.  Cover and let the rolls rise for 40 minutes.

Note: you'll have a little leftover apple filling, after rolling up all the dough.  The leftovers are delicious stirred into a bowl of hot oatmeal for breakfast.

6. Bake at 400 degrees until lightly browned.  Be sure to watch carefully while the fritters cook; the original recipe I was following said bake-time would be 20 minutes, but I burned my first batch, following those instructions.  Instead, my fritters were perfect at about the 9 minute mark.  Remove them from the pan and cool on a wire rack.

7. Once the fritters have cooled, prepare the glaze: combine the powdered sugar, 4 teaspoons melted butter, 1 tablespoon apple juice, and 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon in a bowl; drizzle over the rolls.  I actually found it easier to "frost" the rolls more like cupcakes, since the glaze was thick and hard to drizzle evenly.

This recipe probably concludes my bread-making ventures, at least for a little while, and I intend to return to proper dinner recipes in the week ahead - stay tuned!

Nutrition Info:
24 servings (1 roll), Calories 191

Tasting Notes:
It was a hard to wrap my taste buds around these little morsels - at first bite, I felt that it was too bread-y, and thought the apple filling might have been more at home inside a sweet muffin batter.  On second bite, the apple filling and the apple glaze combined in a burst, and I liked it just the way it was.  Overall, quite yummy, and my only disappointment stems from places where the original recipe seemed wrong (the amount of time it would take for the liquid to evaporate in the filling, the bake time required, the amount of powdered sugar needed in the glaze etc.).  Next time I might also use a sweeter apple like Braeburn or Pink Lady.  Luckily, using a little bit of improvisation, I got a darn tasty little product, midway between a bread roll and a dessert - and leftovers will surely be breakfast in the week to come.



  1. Thanks for the shout out! Sounds like the Zevia Ginger Root Beer was a perfect combination with these tasty pastries!

    We have a coupon on our Facebook page for your next purchase! Enjoy!

  2. Thanks so much! I love your root beer and ginger ale, and will definitely try your other sodas soon.