Saturday, May 18, 2024

Web Xtra: Deconstructing the Dish

Tacos, burritos, nachos, enchiladas, fajitas. Those ubiquitous Mexican (or Mexican­-esque) dishes are probably as familiar to even the least food­-conscious American as hamburgers, hot dogs, apple pie and lemonade.

Churros? Eh, not so much.

Too bad, because churros roll the best of doughnuts and beignets into one crisp, airy, ­sweet and ­irresistible package. Make that one fluted, golden, cinnamon and sugar­-dusted, chocolate-­dipped log.

Victor Meneses, chef at Delray’s Mexican­-with-­a-modern-­American­-twist restaurant, El Camino (15 N.E. Second Ave., 561/865-5350), has made these classic South-of-the-Border sweet treats a signature of his eclectic menu. And now it’s a signature you can put your own name to.




4 cups water

4 cups all­-purpose flour

8 eggs

1/2 pound butter

1/4 cup baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

Cinnamon sugar

1 cup sugar

3 tablespoon cinnamon

Chocolate dipping sauce

1/4 cup half and half

3 ounces sugar

3 cups Mexican bittersweet chocolate

1/2 tablespoon vanilla paste

2 ounces coffee­-infused tequila

For batter: Mix flour and baking powder and set aside. Bring water, butter and salt to boil in pot. Add flour-­baking powder mixture and cook over medium heat for two minutes, stirring constantly. (Dough should have the consistency of thick paste.)

Take pot off heat and add dough to mixer. Beat at medium speed for one minute to get steam out of the dough, then with mixer running add eggs, one at a time, until fully incorporated. Remove dough from mixer and chill until thoroughly cold.

For cinnamon sugar: Mix cinnamon and sugar together. Set aside.

For dipping sauce: Add all ingredients but tequila to a pot and cook over low heat, whisking constantly. When sauce comes together, remove from heat and add tequila. Pour into bowls to serve.

When ready to cook churros, heat neutral-­tasting oil in fryer or pot to 350 degrees. Place dough in pastry bag with fluted tip and pipe lengths into hot oil, frying for approximately two minutes per side or until golden. Remove churros from oil, place on paper towels and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.

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