The eight-day Jewish festival of lights began yesterday, December 20, at sundown. On the first night of Hanukkah, millions of Jews in Israel and abroad lit Hanukkah candles. The candle’s light symbolizes a beacon of hope–reminding us of the Hanukkah miracle–when the Jewish temple’s menorah stayed lit for eight days, despite the Jews only having enough oil to light it for one. Sufganiyot (in the picture above) are ball-shaped doughnuts that are first deep-fried, then pierced and injected with jelly or custard, and then topped with powdered sugar.They are widely consumed in Israel in the weeks leading up to and including the Hanukkah holiday.
- 2 tablespoons active dry yeast
- 1/2 cup warm water (100° F, 40° C)
- 1/4 cup plus 1 teaspoon sugar, plus more for rolling
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 3 cups vegetable oil, plus more for bowl
- 1 cup seedless raspberry jam
- In a small bowl, combine yeast, warm water, and 1 teaspoon sugar. Set aside until foamy, about 10 minutes.
- Place flour in a large bowl. Make a well in the center; add eggs, yeast mixture, 1/4 cup sugar, butter, nutmeg, and salt. Using a wooden spoon, stir until a sticky dough forms. On a well-floured work surface, knead until dough is smooth, soft, and bounces back when poked with a finger, about 8 minutes (add more flour if necessary). Place in an oiled bowl; cover with plastic wrap. Set in a warm place to rise until doubled, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
- On a lightly floured work surface, roll dough to 1/4-inch thickness. Using a 2 1/2-inch-round cutter or drinking glass, cut 20 rounds. Cover with plastic wrap; let rise 15 minutes.
- In medium saucepan over medium heat, heat oil until a deep-frying thermometer registers 370 degrees. Using a slotted spoon, carefully slip 4 rounds into oil. Fry until golden, about 40 seconds. Turn doughnuts over; fry until golden on other side, another 40 seconds. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a paper-towel-lined baking sheet. Roll in sugar while warm. Fry all dough, and roll in sugar.
- Fill a pastry bag fitted with a #4 tip with jam. Using a wooden skewer or toothpick, make a hole in the side of each doughnut. Fit the pastry tip into a hole, pipe about 2 teaspoons jam into doughnut. Repeat with remaining doughnuts.