“The woman who made the diples [fried dough] was like my grandmother — she wore a bib apron 24 hours a day,” Chef Michael Psilakis told Food & Wine Magazine.
Psilakis is a New York City-based restaurateur best known for his appearances on television shows, including Ultimate Recipe Showdown, Iron Chef America, The Best Thing I Ever Ate and No Kitchen Required.
He has owned and operated a number of popular restaurants around New York and once cooked for President Barack Obama at the White House.
Below he shares his very own recipe for “diples,” or crispy fried dough dipped in honey or syrup. See the ingredients and instructions and enjoy this batch of Greek sweetness in your own home today!
- 1 cup honey
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- Two 1-inch strips of orange zest
- One 3-inch cinnamon stick
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (Buy your Greek extra virgin olive oil here)
- Pinch of salt
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
- Vegetable oil, for frying
- 1 cup chopped toasted walnuts
- Ground cinnamon, for sprinkling
1. In a large saucepan, bring the honey, water, sugar, orange zest, cinnamon stick and lemon juice to a boil. Simmer over moderate heat until slightly thickened, 10 minutes. Discard the zest and cinnamon stick.
2. In a medium bowl, using a wooden spoon, beat the eggs with the olive oil and salt. Add the flour and stir until a stiff, shaggy dough forms. Turn the dough out onto a work surface and knead until smooth, about 2 minutes; add more flour if the dough is sticky. Cut the dough into 4 pieces, cover with plastic wrap and let stand for 20 minutes.
3. Roll 1 piece of dough at a time through a pasta machine, working your way from the widest setting to the thinnest. Transfer the dough strip to a well-floured work surface and dust with flour. Cut the strip into 4-inch squares. Repeat with the remaining dough.
4. In a large pot, heat 2 inches of vegetable oil to 360°. Working with 8 squares at a time, roll each square into a loose cigar and drop it into the hot oil. Fry over moderate heat, turning once, until golden and crisp, about 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pastries to a paper towellined baking sheet to drain. Repeat until all of the dough is fried.
5. Rewarm the honey syrup. Using tongs, add a few pastries at a time to the honey syrup and turn to coat. Transfer them to a large bowl and sprinkle lightly with chopped walnuts and cinnamon. Repeat until all of the pastries are coated. Carefully transfer the pastries to a serving platter and pour any remaining honey syrup on top. Serve right away.
** NOTE: If you choose to prepare ahead of time, these glazed pastries can be kept overnight at room temperature in an airtight container
Featured image / Martin Morrell, Food & Wine Magazine
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