Chef Alejandra Schrader is making a tasty Venezuelan version of beignets.


  • 2 lbs of yucca (fresh, not frozen)
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup fresh white cheese (queso fresco), shredded
  • 1 tbsp tapioca flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • Oil for frying (about 1 liter)

Ingredients for Mela'o (Syrup) - Make ahead

  • 10 oz. small piloncillo (sugar cane cones)
  • 1 cup of water
  • 4 cloves
  • 1 stick cinnamon
  • 1 tsp orange peel, grated


1. Bring water to boil in large pot. Peel yucca and cut in about 1 1/2” chunks and cook in water until fork tender, about 25 min. Drain and cool down.

2. In a food processor, combine yucca chunks, egg yolks, cheese, tapioca flour, sugar, and salt. Process until all ingredients have incorporated and dough is consistent and smooth.

3. Using your hands, make 1 ¼” balls of yucca dough. Your hands should be slightly moist for better results.

4. Heat oil in medium pot (ideally you would use cooking thermometer and bring temperature to about 365 degrees). Fry buñuelos until golden brown. Remove from oil carefully and place on platter lined with paper towels to drain excess oil.

5. Serve buñuelos while hot and cover generously with syrup.

Directions for Syrup

1. Combine all ingredients in a medium sauce pan. Cook over medium heat until cones have dissolved and syrup is thick and golden brown. Remove from heat and set aside.

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