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Thursday, June 27, 2013

Papanași (Romanian ricotta-based sweet fritters)

This is my mom's recipe of the classic Romanian papanași. Usually done with cow's milk cottage cheese / fresh cheese, she sometimes made them with something like home-made ricotta (which she obtained by curdling the milk with a tablespoon of lemon juice). This is why I believe you'll come closer to that taste if you use store-bought ricotta instead of the grainier traditional cheese. 
There are more complicated regional variations of these (served with jam and whipped cream), but at least in the Moldova of my childhood, everyone ate them with liquid cream and white sugar dusted on top of them (like you can notice, if you look carefully, in the picture above).
Easy as nothing. Enjoy :)

Last year: Pizza with goat cheese, caramelized onions and raspberry sauce.
Two years ago: Spicy shrimp and wild rice soup (Chinese).

Ingredients (serves 3-4):
  • 500 g ricotta
  • 2 eggs
  • 15 g sugar (1 tablespoon)
  • a pinch of salt
  • 100 g wheat semolina
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • sunflower oil for frying
  • liquid cream and sugar / jam for serving

Mix the ricotta with the eggs and sugar. Mix the semolina with the baking soda and salt. Mix the dry stuff with the wet stuff and the batter is done.
Heat the oil in a large pan, then drop large tablespoonfuls of batter in it:

Turn them after 4-5 minutes (on low-medium heat):

And fry for another 4-5 minutes. Transfer to a large serving plate and repeat with the remaining batter.
To serve, put 4 on each plate, drizzle 2-3 tablespoons liquid sweet cream on them and dust with caster sugar (or red fruit jam). Dig in! :)


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