Sopapilla

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These luscious fried breads fill restaurant bread baskets throughout the Southwest. Omit the cinnamon sugar and honey to serve them as a savory accompaniment.

Difficulty: Medium

Hands-on: 45 minutesTotal: 1 hour 55 minutes

Serves: 12

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • ½ tsp. kosher salt
  • ½ cup water
  • 1¾ tsp. active dry yeast (1 package)
  • ½ cup whole wheat flour
  • 3 cups bread flour
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup honey
  • 1½ Tbsp. grated orange zest
  • 3 Tbsp. orange juice
  • 1 Tbsp. grated lemon zest
  • 3 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 whole star anise
  • 4 cups canola oil

Directions

  • Combine butter, milk, and salt in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, then set aside to cool.
  • Meanwhile, whisk together water and yeast and rest 10 minutes until foamy. Add cooled butter mixture and whole wheat flour. Stir together to form a smooth paste. Add enough bread flour to form a firm dough. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead 8–10 minutes. Add flour only to reduce stickiness. Return to bowl, dust with flour, cover with a warm, moist towel, and rise until doubled in volume, about 1 hour.
  • Mix together sugar and cinnamon and set aside. Combine honey, orange zest, orange juice, lemon zest, lemon juice, and star anise. Warm gently over low heat. Keep warm.
  • In a heavy, high-sided frying pan, heat canola oil to 350°F. Turn dough onto floured surface and with a rolling pin, roll to ¼" thick. Cut into 2" squares. Fry in hot oil, 1–2 minutes on each side, until evenly browned. Drain on paper towels, dust with cinnamon sugar, and serve immediately with honey mixture for dipping.