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Healthy Snacking

A healthy batch of churros.

With all the hustle and bustle of the school year upon us, you might feel compelled to snack on foods that are not the best for your body or your mind. Fortunately for us all, there are alternative recipes including this Vanilla and Chocolate Churro that will surely leave you satisfied and nourished.

Over the summer I had roomates with special dietary needs, which forced me to find healthier alternatives to cook, but I didn’t want to stop eating some of the snacks I love, like churros.

When you eat a churro, you may think to yourself, There’s no way this can be healthy or nutritious, which is true and remains true for most desserts, since they are filled with butter and sugar. The great thing about this recipe is that it requires only a quarter of the amount of butter required in a typical recipe and hardly any sugar, thanks to okara, a soybean/tofu product that’s high in fiber. It’s a nutritious way to substitute for things like butter or eggs. The okara on its own also adds a distinct crunchy texture and taste, eliminating the need to completely deep-fry the churros.

Vanilla and Chocolate Churros

What you’ll need:

  • ¼ cup of water
  • ½ cup of butter (unsalted)
  • 1 cup of all purpose flour, sifted
  • ½ cup of okara*
  • 2-3 eggs, beaten well
  • Vanilla extract
  • Powdered sugar for dusting

(For the chocolate churros, use the same ingredients listed, but add 1 tbs. of cocoa powder to the flour.)

What to do:

1.Begin by heating vegetable oil at 320 degrees in a pan about 1- 1½ inches deep.

2.Separately, heat the water and butter and bring it to a boil.

3. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the sifted flour and okara. Blend it well until the mixture becomes doughy and ball-like in shape.

4. Stir constantly and continue to cook for one minute. A thin film will form at the bottom of the pan and when it does, remove the pan from heat and place the batter into a bowl.

5. Gradually add the beaten eggs in 3-4 doses, stirring after each addition.  Stir in the vanilla extract.

6. Fill a pastry bag or plastic sandwich bag with the batter. Using the pastry bag, squeeze out the batter into the pan with the heated oil.

7. Let the batter fry, rotating each side, for about two minutes or until the batter’s a golden brown. Remove the churros from oil and place them onto a tray lined with paper towels.

8. Let the churros cool and let the oil drain off onto the paper towels. Lastly, sprinkle them with sugar and enjoy!