Oh did we say a late night snack as well? If you come across a local, and suggest dessert, one word will likely be spoken – Churros! And Churros served up more ways than you can count on two hands.
If you are donut fan, Tim Horton’s, Dunkin’ Donuts or the famous New Orleans Beignets, we think you might have met your match in a local churro. This deep fried batter has a distinct shape and even better flavor, and it is the sweet snack of choice when you find them fresh. Local malls, street vendors and special events serve up these freshly made little babies with your topping of choice. Cajeta (caramel), chocolate, cinnamon and cane sugar, or if you are lucky vanilla.
Churros are a deep fried dough – similar to a choux, that is either filled with one of the above ingredients, or dunked in a cinnamon/cane sugar mixture. They are cooked on the spot, and served hot! Those donuts that sit on a shelf all day just aren’t as appealing once you sink your teeth into these fresh donut like desserts. Beignets seem a bit dull with just an icing sugar coating.
Unlike a round donut or a square beignet, churros are long, round strips of yumminess. Some people like to think of them as fritters, but they are even better than that. The dough consists of just flour, sugar and oil, but how you dip them is up to the vendor and up to you.
Playa del Carmen – In the main square by the ferry pier, a local vendor sells churros nightly. These are sold with a dusting of cinnamon and sugar. No other options…and only in the evening.
Playa del Carmen – Plaza Las Americas Mall – All day churros while the mall is open can be found here. Pick your favorite dipping, or opt for the classic cinnamon and sugar coating. Cheap and cheerful and made on the spot, so wait a few minutes for a fresh one!
Playa del Carmen – On 5th Avenue between 2nd and 4th street is a tiny, tiny shop called Churros Bueno. Now they do have lots of fillings, but they are expensive as the price of churros go. For visitors you may laugh at the price of 2.50 USD but this is double any other vendor that sells churros. People go for their vast selection of fillings which seem worth the extra 1.50 USD.
Puerto Morelos – In the town square in the Colonia, west side of Hwy 307, you will find the Churro vendor, with a line up. This little cart is found daily from 6 pm to 11 pm, with fresh churros flying out of this cart. Again, cinnamon and sugar dusting only, but the best of the best.
Cancun – At any of the local malls all day long…these stands have the most dipping options around!
Merida – In the largest town square – historical district- during the evenings. Cinnamon and sugar coating most evenings with a few surprises offered other evenings.
What You Need
Oil – for frying and dough
Nutella – for chocote fans
How to Make ‘Em
In a saucepan heat 2 1/4 cups of water, 6 tbsps of canola oil, 1 tsp of salt, to a boil. Remove from heat and add 2 1/4 cups of white flour. Stir well until all ingredients are blended.
Sift 1 cup of cane sugar and 1 tbsp of cinnamon onto a flat plate, ready for your cooked churros. Set aside.
In a deep saucepan or frying pan put 3 cups of oil over medium high heat.
Scoop the dough into an icing bag with a 3/8 inch star tip. When the oil is hot, using half a teaspoon of dough to test the heat (if it starts cooking immediately, your oil is ready), push the dough through the star tip directly into the hot oil. Pieces should measure about 5 inches, but it will depend on the size of your saucepan or frying pan.
Fry the dough on both sides for 2 minutes each side, until golden brown. Using a set of tongs, take each churro out one by one and place on paper towel to remove any excess oil.
Take each churro and dip the entire ‘donut’ into the sugar and cinnamon mixture. Dust all sides before serving. Serve on a plate or a basket!!
If Nutella is your kinda thing, place nutella in a bowl and heat in the microwave for 30 seconds or until soft. Use this for dipping.
Note” If you are not used to cooking with hot oils, or are not used to deep frying, we recommend you buy your churros when on vacation. Heated oils can be dangerous and can cause injury if mishandled. If you are used to making donuts, or any deep fried items at home, add these babies to your list.
Happy eating as we thing this dessert is the perfect Dessert Storm!
Check out our ebook, Eat Your Way Through the Riviera Maya, for more local recipes.