Who remembers their first time with a churro? I do. It was at the San Diego Zoo when I was a kid. To remember. You probably remember it too.
I’ve been a bit obsessed with churros since I was a kid. Fried bread coming out of the fryer with lots of grooves to capture a thick layer of cinnamon sugar. What’s not to like? I encountered my first heavenly churro in Spain, where you grab “xurros y chocolate” on the way home from the club, giving you just enough calories to get home.
I lived in Miami for a few years. And always made it a point to drive past the “churro intersection” in Hialeah. You could buy a bag of churros out your car window for a dollar. You just rolled down your window and yelled “churro, churro, churro” at a red light. Sweet, cold, but still delicious churros would come straight to you from an industrious entrepreneur.
It was inevitable that I would try my hand at making churros at home at some point. How hard could that be? Turns out to be very difficult. You need a piping bag, the right tip, and some skill in making pastry dough. It also requires some dexterity. You need to pour the dough from the bag into the hot oil while simultaneously cutting the churro dough to the right length without burning yourself and making sure your bag of dough doesn’t explode. Phew. I even asked for help – we both ended up with a few minor burns, mediocre churros and no easy way to satisfy my obsession.
Scott Porter, the founder of San Diablo Churros, is also obsessed.
He developed his passion in Mexico City, where churro stands can be found on almost every street. In the bohemian southeast part of town, they make a kind of hollow churros that are freshly filled with dulce de leche. When Scott returned to the United States, he, like me, was disappointed with the American version.
“I remember thinking at that time, I love churros, but I don’t understand why we have such mediocre churros in the United States,” Scott said. “And so it planted this idea that at some point it would be really irresponsible not to share this with the rest of the world. I think I would like to start a churro business and see what might happen.
Churros San Diablo came as the culmination of a lot of testing, trial and error until it was perfect, which included developing a dough closer to a choux pastry. The company name is a nod to the recipe’s Mexican origins and offers a playful note on the duality of Saintly Devils. “We incorporated a lot of those things into our experience,” Scott said. “So we have cinnamon spiced sugars. We have a secret menu with Diablo cinnamon sugar and Inferno cinnamon sugar with cayenne and habanero. We wanted to have fun with this idea that people always say, ‘Get away. These are so addicting. You tempt me. And then say, “These are the best things. Like falling from the sky.
San Diablo Churros was launched in various events, then as catering business with a food truck. You’ve seen them around town with their bustle and crew in bow ties. They have won the award for “Best Pastry in Utah” several times. Now, over six years later, Scott is thrilled to present his latest venture: the Churro Fiesta in a box.
The idea was to create a kit that could serve as a complete churro-making system at home, a system that could be made as a family or for a party. I had one myself, and the kit had the batter (just add water), cinnamon sugar, and even a surefire churro making tool for perfect piping. You can choose between dulce de leche, Nutella or berries for garnish. Add a few angelic/evil surprises to the box, and you have the perfect party. Bonus points if you also get Spicy Cinnamon Sugar. When I made mine, it took me about 30 minutes from start to finish with zero burns and perfect churros. Obsession accomplished.
Do you remember when I asked you how you first ate a churro? It was probably an opportunity.
“I think churros will always be something special. In people’s minds, there is nostalgia in the churro,” Scott said. “Everyone will find and have a favorite churro keepsake. They say, ‘I used to go to the fair with my grandmother, and she always gave me churros.’ “Every time we went to Disneyland we had churros.” “On my honeymoon at the beach in Cancun, we went for churros.” Either way, there is always a happy memory associated with churros, and it becomes a special occasion. And so, what we wanted to do was make the churro more accessible. AKA easy to make at home. For everyone.
The goal? Become the world authority on churro. Not serious.
“We want to be this essential resource [for people who want to make churros at home]. That’s why we give our Recipe“, said Scott. “We want you to create special memories in your home with churros. We provide you with all the equipment and supplies you need.
To this end, San Diablo Churros is also launching University of Churros (a series of how-to videos) and providing vegan and gluten-free kits. “I just love the idea of creating a new tradition for the holiday season,” Scott said. “So whether it’s Day of the Dead, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, or New Year’s Eve, all of those are times when we get together with family and friends.”
For me, I started planning my Day of the Dead celebration around churros. Who wants to come ?
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