Traditional Spanish pastries, "Buñuelos de viento" on All Saints Day

By Chef H. Delgado

October 31, 2022

This week I bring you one of my favourite traditional sweets.
It is a fried dough ball made with flour, eggs, water, milk and butter, usually filled with whipped cream, custard, chocolate ganache or other creams or jams.
This delicious dessert is one of the stars of the bakery when Halloween or All Saints' Day celebrations arrive here in Spain. But it is also typical during Lent and Christmas.

I have found several theories about the origin of this traditional dish that I would like to share with you. So before we get cooking, let's see where these addictive sweet balls come from.

The first theory refers to their Roman origin. The name "Buñuelo" derives from the word "Puñuelo", which refers to a small ball of dough that the Romans kneaded with their hands. In the writings of the Roman 'Cato the Elder', during the 2nd century BC, a similar dessert called 'globos' is mentioned.

There is also a theory that Sephardic Jews have been making fried dumplings from wheat flour called 'Bimuelos' to celebrate Hanukkah since the 10th century. The introduction of these buns into the celebration of All Saints' Day is a Christian modification due to their proximity to the Jewish Hanukkah.

The legend of Almogía

Legend has it that they originated in Almogía in Malaga in 1090 when the Sevillian king Mohamed ben Abad Al Motamid surrounded the town's fortress. Seeing that both food and wood for the ovens were in short supply, a baker called 'Abdelaziz ben Drisi el Jabazún' counted the stores and decided to make pancakes of flour dough and water. He then took them to the top of the castle and put them in the cauldrons of boiling oil that were used to throw at the attackers.
This recipe became one of the favourite desserts of the inhabitants of Granada and Seville.

Although the first written version with the name 'Buñuelos' in Spain is found in the cookbook for the kings. Francisco Martínez published a book entitled 'Arte de la cocina, repostería, panadería y conservas' in the 17th century.

"Buñuelos de viento" recipe

  • Preparation time 20 min
  • Cooking time 30 min
  • Total time 50 min

Ingredients for 48 "buñuelos"

  1. 4 eggs
  2. 150 g / 1/3 lb / 5,2 oz flour
  3. 50 g / 0,1 lb / 1,7 oz butter
  4. 125 ml / 1/2 cup water
  5. 125 ml / 1/2 cup milk
  6. 4 tablespoons of sugar
  7. A piece of lemon zest
  8. 1 tablespoon cinnamon powder
  9. 500 ml / 2 cups sunflower oil

For the filling

  1. 250 ml / 2 cups cream
  2. 3 tablespoons sugar

Method

  1. In a saucepan, boil the water, butter, sugar, lemon zest and a little salt. When it comes to a boil, remove the lemon zest, add the flour, and start stirring with a spoon until the dough is compact and comes away from the sides. Remove from the heat and leave to cool.
  1. Once lukewarm, add the eggs one by one until well blended.
  2. Let the dough rest for 2 hours.
  1. Place a deep frying pan or saucepan with the sunflower oil over medium heat. When it is hot, about 140 degrees, spoon the dough into small balls and add them to the oil to fry.
  2. When they puff up and rise to the surface of the oil, turn up the heat a little until the patties are golden brown. If the dough is well done, you will see that they will turn over on their own.
  1. Remove with a  spoon and leave to drain over kitchen paper.
  2. When they are hot or cold, as you prefer to eat them, sprinkle them with the cinnamon and sugar mixture.
  3. Finally, fill them with whipped cream. Make a small cut with a small knife and pour the cream into a piping bag.

You can fill them with whatever you like. Even without filling, they are delicious.

Thank you very much for reading this recipe. I hope you liked it and will cook this delicious Spanish cuisine recipe soon.
Have a sweet All Saints Day!

I'm Chef H. Delgado

Love for the product, take care of the technique, elegant execution, and above all, nature and environment respect, are my values ​​as a professional.
It is a pleasure for me to invite you to discover the best dishes and ingredients of Spanish cuisine.

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