When we moved to Israel, we adopted the tradition of making sufganiyot for Chanukah instead of latkes (levivot).
One year, my friend and I offered to make sufganiyot for the Chanukah party at our kids’ gan (preschool). It seemed like a lovely idea at the time. Two hours into the deep frying, we were having some regrets! Eventually, we finished all 200 sufganiyot (we made them slightly larger than donut hole size) and they truly were delicious. Even the sabras asked for the recipe.
Aside from a great recipe for the dough, the sufganiyot were especially good because we figured out a quick and easy way to fill them with jelly. We got a 10 mL syringe from the pharmacy (just ask — they’ll give them to you for free) and filled it with 4-5 cc’s of seedless, ever-so-slightly watered down strawberry jelly. Then we inserted the tip of the syringe into the side of the donut — and let it rip!
My kids love helping with this part now, and even my littlest one can push the button on the syringe. I’m sure it’s not a completely novel idea, but it’s definitely our favorite Chanukah hack.
Oh, and our other “hack”? Buying a deep fryer. My husband thinks it’s an absolutely essential kitchen appliance. I’m not sure I’d go that far (I have other appliances I really can’t live without), but it definitely makes the sufganiyot-making process much easier and faster.
- 1 T dry yeast
- 4 T white sugar
- 3/4 c lukewarm milk or water
- 2-1/2 c white flour
- 1 t cinnamon
- 2 eggs, separated
- 2 T butter or margarine
- Strawberry jam (the kind without seeds), ribat chalav (caramel), or chocolate spread
- Powdered sugar
- Vegetable oil — lots and lots of it
- Syringe or pastry tube
Mix yeast with 2 tablespoons of sugar and milk or water. Let it sit until bubbles form.
Sift flour and mix in remaining sugar, cinnamon, egg yolks and yeast mixture.
Knead dough until ball forms. Add butter/margarine, and continue kneading until absorbed.
Cover the dough with towel and let it rise overnight in the refrigerator.
Roll out the dough to a thickness of about 1/8 – 1/4-inch. Using a juice glass or 2-inch round cookie cutter, cut dough into 24 rounds. Let them rise for another 30 minutes.
Heat at least 2 inches of oil in a large pan to about 375 degrees. (Or use a deep fryer — much simpler!) Drop the doughnuts into the hot oil, about five at a time. Turn them to brown on both sides. Drain on paper towels.
When cool enough to handle, use a syringe or pastry tube to pipe jelly into the center of the donut. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and enjoy!
What’s your favorite Chanukah recipe? Are you a sufganiyot person? Or do you prefer latkes? Perhaps your family has another favorite oily treat! Please share your favorite recipe in the comments section.
This post originally appeared in 2010, but I keep getting requests for it, so I’ve bumped it back up toward the top of the blog.