Churros / Fried Batter

Growing up I got dragged to my mother’s ancestral summer home in Bohol. achurro1Part of the bargaining that would occur prior to the trip would include how many cans of broas (lady fingers) and how much tablea (chocolate) I would be able to bring back to Manila. The home that we stayed while on these holidays was in the middle of a small cacao plantation just by the main road. Cacao fruit were plentiful on the trunks of the trees whenever we visited during the summer. The cacao was eventually harvested and the beans converted into little cocoa cakes known as tablea. The tablea made a memorable hot chocolate, unlike the refined Hershey cocoa versions that came in cans at city groceries. And the best things to dunk in the hot chocolate were either crisp broas (since they were from nearby and wickedly fresh) or back home, some freshly fried up churros. One of my readers recently sent me an email asking if I had a recipe – and frankly, I had never cooked them before but started to search around.

Turns out these are incredibly EASY to make. If you want the churros for achurro2the cooking impaired version follow this simple recipe… Boil up two cups of water with ½ teaspoon salt and a pat of good butter. Measure out two cups of sifted all purpose flour into a metal or pyrex bowl. Pour the water over the flour and mix with a spatula – the dough will be rather thick. If too thick add a bit of hot water. Heat up oil in a pan for deep frying, put the dough into a pastry bag and pipe out some of the soft dough onto a floured sheet and fry until golden brown. Yum. Easy and delicious. If you like, sprinkle with a powdered sugar and cinnamon mixture. If you want to make the dough a little richer, and have a bit more taste, add a whole egg to the dough and mix thoroughly before frying. This is absolutely declicious with a cup of hot chocolate made with tablea. This is one of the cheapest snacks I can think of to make… if you are ordering it at a restaurant, you are getting fleeced.

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31 Responses

  1. Mmmm… churros! I used to love getting fleeced at Dulcinea. Thanks for posting that recipe! I will definitely try it sometime soon.

    Wonder where I could get tablea chocolate here in Silicon Valley. The Mexican version has a hint of cinnamon. While it IS delicious, it’s not the same…

  2. Fantastic Marketman! Your churros make my stomach grumble. I discovered this trick for making pretty churros: pipe the batter through an icing bag with a star-shaped tip.

  3. Karen, I couldn’t find my tip with star shaped end… so they look like long sausages!

  4. yeah . . . I always make churros especially when the rainy days are here, with the hot choco made from cocoa tablets. . . yum yum. Dulcinea have churro stands around malls now, but quite expensive, rather make a lot at home. . . Try milk in place of water. . . I have this churro maker sent to me from Australia, the brand is Bernar Churrera, it’s made in spain though. . . its really helpful, it is a 6in. cylinder metal pipe where you fill the dough in, at the bottom end there is a cover with a hole and a slide with different shapes where the dough passes through, at the top end the cover is with a screw type knob which pushes the dough.

  5. Churros and hot chocolate…yum!!! Thanks for the recipe, like Fried-Nuerons, I also get “fleeced at Dulcinea”. Haha! Have never tried them myself…also because I don’t have an icing bag…I know I really should get one, can’t be McGyver forever…

  6. thanks for that recipe MM. i’ve been looking for a recipe of churros for years, ‘coz this isn’t available in any stores here. like others, I had tried churros only in Dulcinea — 6 years ago! at last, now, i can do it myself…Yummmy!

  7. antonio pueo makes really good chocolate. I have never tried their tablea, but I always get their unsweetened cooking chocolate, made of pure cacao. It’s great, because it’s really chocolatey and I can put as much or as little sugar as I want…or splenda. Unfortunately, it’s not readily available in supermarkets. So far, I have only seen them selling this in food expos (such as WOFEX at the world trade center). Have you tried the hot chocolate of “Xocolat”? They’re in the new are of the Promenade in Greenhills. IMO, they have the best hot chocolate, hands down. Much better than the over-rated Max Brenner.

  8. Your story about the tablea reminded me of that I spent vacation with my grandmother who owned a cacao farm. She made a lot of tablea and I mean a lot. The tablea part was exciting but it was making them that tortured me. My grandmother made us suck on all the cacao seeds (the same way you suck on santol and mangosteen seeds) in order to get as much of the juice and the fibrous thing off the seeds. Then she washed them, driend and roasted them for processing. I remember I got a hell of a stomachache that I couldn’t have the finished product…sigh.

  9. Karen, they do have Pueo tablea in some groceries like Landmark in Makati. I have heard of Xocolat but have not yet tried it, but now I will make it a point to go! Chris, I can’t imagine sucking on all those seeds…I would get a stomachache too! Ouch!

  10. Yes, another Blogger (Lori, Dessert First) wrote about Xocolat and it looks really good. Another place with good hot chocolate is the Pen lobby. One big pitcher of hot chocolate that will leave you full and satisfied, not just a cup.
    We used to make hot chocolate, tableas and semi-sweet cocoa mixed together for added chocolate flavor, sometimes bittersweet chocolate chips when we ran out of cocoa, cooked slowly in heavy cream and carabao’s milk over a double boiler. We’d eat it with ensymada’s since making churros was too “oily”.
    I was in Jolo last December and the family cook of our host made something very similar to the recipe you mentioned above Marketman. Since she didn’t have the piping, it came out much thinner and longer, so she’d create random round shapes, and the name of the pastry was called “bracelets”. They were nice and crunchy, good with the strong Jolo coffee. I’m sure they would go nicely with hot cocoa too!

  11. To Fried-Neuron:
    a good substitute for chocolate tablea is the unsweetened baking chocolate that comes in 1 oz. blocks. They can be found in the baking section of supermarkets in the US. Use 1 cup water for 1 oz. block, 3 T sugar or to taste, pinch of salt. Mix and stir over med. heat and boil for a few minutes. Add milk.

  12. Making this milk instead of water probably results in a smoother and richer confection. Joey, if you don’t have a piping bag you can use the corner of a zip-lock plastic bag…just snip off the corner and squeeze dough through the hole. You can even fit a steel tip into the corner.

  13. Got churros from a churreria near the Puente de Triana in Seville where they make them in really long coils they look like cow’s intestines. They give you the option of a sprinkling of sugar or salt. I tried salt but didn’t really like the taste. Had to throw the whole coil in the trash bin. There’s a Mexican woman selling them illegaly in the connecting tunnel near the 7 train tracks in Grand Central. They cost only 1 dollar for 3 pieces. They may be unsanitary but they’re not any worse than eating fishball from the sidewalk carreton. Ah, life’s little guilty pleasures.

  14. Michael, if you have a large frying pan or deep fryer you can make the long version – great if you don’t live in 90% humidity weather where they will get soggy… I have to buy myself a churrero that squeezes it out nicely.

  15. I remember my lola used to cook chocolate in a brass pot with some cornstarch and then beat it with a wooden batidor and serve the thick goo in demitasse cups. As a kid I was more partial to drinking Milo or Ovaltine. Now I make it in a Mexican chocolatera. An earthenware pot, which I’m sure contains huge amounts of lead, and use their version of the batidor, a more elaborately carved contraption with twirling serrated rings. I know I could just as easily make it using a saucepan and wire whisk but since the Mexicans have been doing it that way since the Aztecs they must know what they’re doing. I’m not too fond of the Spanish version though. I find it too thick to drink. I prefer Padre Damaso’s chocolate ah(aguado) to chocolate eh(espeso).

  16. pourriez vous me contacter par e-mail SVP car j’ai acheter un appareil à “Chichis” à la foire exposition de nancy il y a plussieurs année dont je suis très contente mais malheueusement j’ai une pièce très importante de la pompe (le pas de vis ui mantien les embouts) qui a cassé et j’aimerais pouvoir m’en procurer un autre . Merci d’avance , Mme Blies Sylvie, 13 chemin des cités sainte-anne, 54300 lunéville, france, , merci de votre réponse que j’attend avec impatience

  17. I don’t speak French well enough to answer this so here is my wife who is more fluent… bonjour, Mme BLIES. Si je vous comprends, vous cherchez un autre appareil pour faire les “churros” ou les beignets fins de pate cannelee et en forme de boucles, typiquement trouves en Espagne. Cet appareil s’appelle “la Churrera” et on peut le acheter, nous croyons le plus proche pour vous, en Espagne. C’est dificile recommender ou vous pouvez l’acheter chez vous car on habite aux Philippines. Nous esperons qu’on a bien entendu votre question. Si non, est-ce que vous peut le demnadez encore? Merci beaucoup.

  18. re: piping out churros, found a gadget at Taj (the indian store in san antonio village in Makati) called a vada maker Php 300+, a cylindrical metal contraption that pipes out rings of dough, think this would work well for churros as well but then again, a piping bag or even a ziplock bag works just as easily!

  19. Hi guys ,

    I know that we are all chocolate lovers here especially the ones that was prepared by our grandmother, the hot choco drink and champorado especially when its raining. Then the tinapa and rice, I really miss those times thats why I would like to introduce our new addition to our product line, Dutche Chocolate Powder/ Tablets. This all natural chocolate tablet is made from pure alkalized (Dutch process) cocoa powder. Its various uses make it very saleable especially among hotels, bars/cafes, restaurants, bakeries and households.

    We also have it in Sweetened Dutche Chocolate Tablet(Tablea) so that our consumers doesn’t have to add sugar and thus saves time especially for those who are always on the go.

    Dutche Chocolate Powder also comes in handy as fondue, churros dip, choco drink, pastries, cakes, brownies, champorado, icing , etc.
    Please feel free to contact me at 6569060/09228106217 for your orders/sample requisition. You can also email me at or for faster transaction.

  20. hello,

    we have cacao trees at home but i dont know how to make these tableas. Can you share those procedures with me? I want to make my own tablea.

  21. Wilson Cariega mentioned buying a Churrega in Australia. Can he, or other readers, provide me with the address of an Australian supplier?

  22. The best churros I’ve had so far (trumping Dulcinea) must be those made at a small store in Cagayan de Oro City. I think the store was called Mai Crafts or something; I just remember that it was beside the Bo’s Coffee bldg. Two churros plus a cup of hot tsokolate are so cheap. Even the natively-made cream liqueur served there is just divine ;) Damn, they were good.

    here’s to finding great things is unexpected places.

  23. marketman, what kind of chocolate do you recomend to get the most authentic tasting chocolate dipping sauce? I tried using some imported dark chocolate from Cooks Exchange…tasted really good but i was looking for a more rustic authentic taste. any ideas?

  24. anne, any really good dark chocolate should work fine, but it’s probably the cream or milk that you are mixing with the chocolate that is the issue. If you want a really rich dipping sauce, use high fat cream with the chocolate. Locally, in the Philippines, the traditional pairing is with a thick tablea tsokolate drink, that is a bit grainer and rougher and often much sweeter than elsewhere.

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