I was itchin' for a "family night" treat yesterday and decided to get ambitious and make this Apple Zeppole and Serious Vanilla Ice Cream. First I will say, both recipes are incredibly delicious. Just a few tips though, on the Zeppole:
-Use a tart apple like a golden delicious or granny smith; it will bring out the flavor of the apple more.
-I added some incredible Saigon Cinnamon my sister found me to the batter with delicious results. (If you ever have the chance to try Saigon Cinnamon, do! You know how cinnamon typical has that woodsy smell and taste until added to something? Saigon Cinnamon tastes sweet all on its own, and has a phenomenal smell. -She found it at her Costco...but she lives in San Antonio.)
-Keep the temperature of your oil closer to 300 degrees. These need to cook at a lower temperature, longer, so the insides are not gooey.
-I served the Zeppole dusted with powdered sugar along-side my ice cream, but I imagine the whipped cream would be tasty as well (especially if I used my Saigon Cinnamon).
You're probably wondering just how in the world you're going to be able to afford to make the ice cream when vanilla beans average $11/bottle in the supermarket and you only get two beans, so I'm going to share my secret. About a month ago I decided I was tired of missing out on all those recipes calling for vanilla beans because I simply couldn't afford to buy them. Besides that, what if the recipe turned out awful? Then I'd just spent five bucks on a bean to throw it in the garbage! So, I got on Amazon and started looking around. To my utter amazement I was able to find packages of vanilla beans that averaged .41/bean (yes, you read that right)! Of course, how could I ever use a package of 54 beans (that's the size they came in to get that price) before they were no longer as fresh? I hit up my sis and the two of us split a package. Now, we're on this vanilla bean kick together and lovin' it!