If there’s one recipe that is quintessentially fall – correction, early fall, then this must be it. You’ll find these fritters dense with apples yet light and pillowy, tart yet sweet. Both ugly and beautiful, they are a contradiction of the best sort: fried and smothered in cinnamon-spiced glaze. They bring to mind a dozen clichés, but especially the one about not judging a book by its cover.
I don’t know what took me so long to make these. My husband is always picking up pre-packaged grocery store fritters (which evoke from me an eye roll and a judgmental look). Perhaps it’s the frying. I don’t do it much. I will concede to frying donuts because they are 100% worth it, but everything else seems like a gamble. After making these, I’m a changed woman. I would gladly put on my fry hat every day for these fritters. They’re easier to make than doughnuts – and better? I’m going to say better. I might just beg you to make them.
I recommend using Granny Smith apples for these fritters. If you are an avid baker, then you already know these apples are tart and dry which is perfect for cakes and pastries. If your apples are too juicy, then the liquid will cook out during frying and result in an undercooked fritter. This recipe uses a smart technique to avoid this sad result: toss the apples with the flour so excess moisture is soaked up – problem solved!
The fritters cook for 2 to 3 minutes on each side. I expected more work and toil for delicious apple fritters, but these were done in a snap!
My secret ingredient for making these fritters taste beyond heavenly is boiled apple cider. You can use regular apple cider as a substitute (and the fritters will still be delicious) but the concentrated boiled cider makes them blue ribbon-worthy! You can find concentrated boiled cider here and always here.
My wish for you this fall? Hot apple fritters and lots of ’em.
Homemade Ugly Apple Fritters
- 2 large Granny Smith apples peeled and chopped into 1/4-inch pieces
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 cup boiled cider or apple cider
- 1/2 cup apple cider
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- 3 cups vegetable oil
- 2 cups confectioners’ sugar
- 3 tablespoons boiled cider or 1/4 cup apple cider
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- Make the fritters: Spread chopped apples in single layer on paper towels and pat dry with additional paper towels.
- Whisk together flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, sea salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg in large bowl. Stir the apples into the flour mixture.
- In a separate bowl, whisk ciders, eggs, and melted butter in medium bowl until combined. Stir cider mixture into flour mixture until incorporated.
- Heat the oil in a large heavy-bottomed pot or in a Dutch oven over medium-high. Insert a thermometer into the oil and heat to 350 degrees. Scoop fritter batter by the 1/3 cups-full, and spoon it into the oil; press the heaps of batter lightly with back of spoon to flatten (this helps them cook evenly). Fry, adjusting burner as necessary to maintain oil temperature between 325 and 350 degrees, until deep golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer fritters to a paper towel-lined baking sheet. Bring oil back to 350 degrees and repeat with remaining batter. Let fritters cool 5 minutes.
- Make the glaze: whisk confectioners’ sugar, cider, cinnamon, and nutmeg in medium bowl until smooth. Add milk to thin glaze if it is too thick to drizzle. Top each fritter with 1 heaping tablespoon glaze. Let glaze set 10 minutes. Serve warm.
- Store leftovers in an airtight container.