Canary Island Doughnuts

This is a San Antonio specialty.

Filling
1 pound (about 1 large) boiled or
    baked sweet potato, mashed
1 1/2 cups chopped toasted almonds
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup milk
2 tablespoons Pernod
1 teaspoon aniseed, toasted and ground
1 teaspoon lemon zest
Pinch of cinnamon

In a medium bowl, combine all filling ingredients. Refrigerate at least 1 hour or overnight.

Pastry
8 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon lemon zest
3/4 cup Crisco?, chilled
1/4 cup unsalted butter, chilled
Ice water

Sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt into a large bowl. Sprinkle in the lemon zest. Cut in the shortening and butter with a pastry blender or fork. Add ice water a tablespoon at a time, adding only the minimum needed to barely hold the dough together. Wrap the dough in plastic, and refrigerate it for at least 1 hour or overnight.

Roll the dough out 1/4 inch thick on a floured pastry board or counter. With a biscuit cutter, cut out 4-inch rounds. Top each round with about 2 tablespoons of filling. Fold the round in half, pinch the edges to seal them, and crimp them with a fork.
Add vegetable oil to a heavy saucepan to a depth of at least 4 inches, and heat to 350 degrees F. If the oil smokes before reaching the correct temperature, it cannot be used for deep frying. Use only fresh, unused oil. Fry the doughnuts until they are lightly browned, about 2 to 3 minutes. Drain them, and sprinkle them with sifted confectioners’ sugar. Serve them immediately.

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