I have eaten many a Beaver Tail™ but have never tried to make something similar at home. Until now. And I’m wondering what took me so long! For the uninitiated, Beaver Tails™ are sort of like an oblong-shaped, flat donut. Basically fried dough. Beyond that, they can be topped with sugar, icing, chocolate, jam, pie filling, cinnamon or just about any other topping (I’ve seen banana split beaver tails!).
Note: This recipe is my own version and does not reflect the official trademarked recipe for Beaver Tails&trade
Aside: When I was looking around on the internet to see if the recipe that was forwarded to me was representative of the other beaver tail recipes out there, I came upon a recipe that was clearly for actual beaver tails. Um … gross. Just to be clear, I’m taking about a sinful, yeast-based, donut-like, decadent treat here. No animals will be harmed in the making of this sweet delight :)
Beaver Tail-shaped Fried Pastries
Summary: These are …
- For the Dough:
- 1/2 cup warm water
- 5 tsp. dry yeast
- pinch of sugar
- 1 cup warm milk
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 2 eggs
- 1/3 cup oil
- 4 1/4 – 5 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- oil for frying
- granulated sugar for dusting
- In a large mixing bowl, mix together the yeast, warm water and pinch of sugar. Let stand for a couple of minutes to allow yeast to swell and dissolve.
- Stir in the remaining sugar, milk, vanilla, eggs, oil, salt and most of flour and mix to make soft dough. Knead for 5-8 minutes (by hand or with a dough hook), adding flour as needed to form a firm, smooth, elastic dough. Place into a greased bowl.
- Cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap. Let the dough rise in a warm spot about 30-40 minutes. Gently deflate the dough.
- Pinch off a golf ball sized piece of dough and roll it out into an oval. Let it rest, covered with a tea towel, while you are preparing the remaining dough.
- Heat about 4 inches of oil in heavy dutch oven, wok or deep fryer. The temperature of the oil should be about 385 F. Test by tossing in a tiny bit of dough and see if it sizzles and swells immediately. If it does, the oil temperature is where it should be.
- Stretch the ovals into a “tail”, thinning them out and enlarging them as you do. Add to the hot oil 1 or 2 at a time, depending on your fryer size (do not crowd).
- Turn once to fry until the undersides are deep brown. Lift beaver tails out with tongs and drain on paper towels.
- Fill a large bowl with a few cups of white sugar . Toss beaver tails in a sugar or sugar/ cinnamon mixture, shaking off excess. Alternately, toss in white sugar, sprinkle a little cinnamon and then squeeze some fresh lemon juice over it (known as a “Killaloe Sunrise”) .
- Other ideas: Spread with Nutella, Maple butter, Apples mixed with cinnamon, Cream Cheese Frosting.
- Here’s a picture of a Killaloe Sunrise Beaver Tail on Flickr.
Prep time: 15 min | Cook time: 15 min | Total time: 1 hour 30 min
Number of servings (yield): 8