Wednesday, March 2, 2011


You're probably familiar with beignets - fluffy little doughnuts covered in powdered sugar, served at Cafe du Monde and other places in Louisiana. You're less likely to be familiar with calas, Louisiana's other fried bit of business - a ball of fried dough that uses up last night's leftover rice.


My recipe is scaled to one egg, which is enough for two people (more than twice what you see pictured):

2/3 cup cooked rice (not hot, but room temp is fine if you feel like cooking some rice and spreading it out to cool on the counter like I mighta done this morning)
1 egg
5/6 teaspoon baking powder (obviously you have to eyeball this - just fill a teaspoon and knock some back out)
1/6 cup sugar
a dash of vanilla extract or whiskey, optional
1/6 to 1/2 cup flour

Combine, adding just enough flour until it sticks together like cookie dough - you need it to stay in balls when you drop it in the deep-fryer, not spread out like a pancake.

Divide into about 6 portions and deep-fry for 6 minutes or so, flipping once. Serve hot with powdered sugar, syrup, or powdered sugar mixed with whiskey.

The rice adds structure to the interior - you can see that from the one cut in half - and some crunch on the exterior where it fries.

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