pumpkin pie spice apple frittersEveryone has their own traditions during the holidays, and my family is no exception. Although we don’t often have extended family over for Thanksgiving dinner because everyone lives out of town, I always make sure my kids are treated to a turkey, whipped potatoes, and all of the delicious side dishes they love.

I also have another Thanksgiving tradition. Because it comes at the time of year when apples are falling from the trees, I always make a big batch of homemade apple fritters on Thanksgiving weekend. I usually buy apples for the fritters from the local fruit stand, but this year I was able to pick apples from our 6 apples trees and use them to make my annual fritters. Just knowing they were my own apples makes the tradition even more special.

I tweaked the recipe I usually use too: because it’s fall and Pumpkin Spice is such a big deal right now, I subbed the cinnamon in my apple fritter recipe for Pumpkin pie spice. It’s actually a pretty easy substitution, but it makes all the difference when it comes to the taste of the fritters. When they’re in the oil puffing up, the entire house smells like heaven.

Fall apple fritters are so easy to make anyone can try them, and maybe when you’ve made them once, you’ll start your own Thanksgiving tradition. Here’s the recipe for glazed apple fritters from the kitchn.com. I’ll walk you through the steps just so you can see how simple it is to make them.

Pumpkin Spice Apple Fritters

Recipe from the kitchn.com

Ingredients: For the apple filling:
2 1/2 pounds (about 5 whole) Granny Smith apples
2 teaspoons lemon juice
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

For the dough:
1 packet of active dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)
3 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/2 cup whole milk
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/3 cup unsalted butter, softened
Olive oil, for frying

For the glaze:
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
3 to 4 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

 

 

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Prepare the apples

Your apples will have to be cut up into small pieces to use them in apple fritters, so you need to core, peel, and chop apples into small pieces. A great Kitchn tip is to submerge them in ice-cold water with 2 teaspoons of lemon juice to prevent them from browning. Once in water, set aside or put in the refrigerator until you’re ready to use them.

 

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Prepare your dough

Using the whisk attachment of a stand mixer (or by hand) whisk together yeast, 3 cups of the flour, sugar, salt, and cinnamon in the bowl of a stand mixer. Next, add the dough hook and turn the mixer on low speed. Add in the milk, followed by the eggs. You’ll need to continue mixing until the dough turns into a ball, and keep in mind that you’ll be adding more wet ingredients so don’t worry if the dough seems dry.

With the dough hook still mixing, add in melted butter one tablespoon at time. Allow each tablespoon of butter to combine into the dough before adding another. The dough will seem sort of greasy for a moment or two but don’t worry. You can add in a dash of flour 1 tablespoon at a time until dough comes back together before adding in tablespoon of butter.

Transfer your dough to a lightly oiled bowl, turn to coat, and cover with a clean kitchen towel. Let the dough rise in a warm spot until doubled in size, 1 to 2 hours. You can also speed up the rising process by putting your dough in your oven to proof. I set my oven to 100 degrees, turn it off, and put the dough inside. You can cut rising time in half.

 

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Prepare the apple filling

While your dough is rising, heat the butter for the filling in a skillet over medium-high heat until butter melts. Drain the apples and add them to the pan with the butter. Sprinkle with sugar and pumpkin pie spice, and cook until tender. Add in apple cider vinegar and cook until liquid is reduced by half. Set aside to cool.

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Apple fritters, assemble

Take your dough out of the bowl and roll it onto a floured surface. I use a large rectangle cutting board so I don’t have to scrape dough off my counters. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough into a 1/2-inch-thick rectangle. Starting from the end closest to your body, scatter 3/4 of the apples over the surface of the dough, then roll it up in a long tube. Be warned: this is the messy part.

Roll up the tube so it looks like a snail’s shell. The finished dough will look like a large ball with apple chunks popping out all over it.

Using a rolling pin, roll out the apple-filled dough ball to a 1/2-thick rectangle. Some apples will pop out and slide to the counter, and you can put them back in by adding them back in and rolling them out with the rolling pin.

Use a spatula or pizza roller to cut the dough into 2 1/2-inch squares to make 12 fritters. Fold the fritters into themselves like a tiny apple blossom, pulling all four corners into the center.

Place the shaped fritters on a parchment-lined baking sheet and loosely cover with plastic wrap. Let rise for about 30 minutes or until the fritters puff and almost double in size. I put them back in the oven for ½ hour, just to help them rise.

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Make the glaze

Sift powdered sugar into a medium bowl. Stir in the milk and vanilla until smooth. Set aside. If you need to, warm in the microwave in 10-second bursts if the glaze starts to harden.

 

Deep-fry the fritters

Heat 6 to 7 inches of oil to 360°F in a large Dutch oven. I like to use olive oil or coconut oil to cut down on the grease factor. You can also use a deep fryer.

Meanwhile, line a wire rack with paper towels.

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Carefully lower 3 to 4 fritters into the hot oil. Fritters will float and not sink. Fry on one side for 30 to 60 seconds or until golden brown, then flip the fritter and fry the other side for 30 to 60 seconds or until golden brown.

Remove fritter with a spider or slotted spoon and drain on prepared wire rack. Repeat with the remaining fritters. (Between batches, make sure the oil temperature returns to 360°F and remove any floating pieces of dough or apples.)

Let fritters cool slightly, then brush the glaze on top. If you’d prefer to have them without glaze, they are good like that too.

You can serve immediately, but these are amazing for a Thanksgiving morning breakfast if you want to reheat them.

It’s a little time consuming, but a lot of fun to make your own apple fritters. Here’s a few small kitchen gadgets and small appliances I use when making my Thanksgiving fritters.

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You can use a deep fryer to cook your apple fritters

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Use a slotted spoon to scoop up your fritters
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I like to use a cast iron pan for any type of deep frying

 

Happy Thanksgiving!

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