3/4 cup flour
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 cup ricotta cheese
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Vegetable oil, for frying
Confectioners' sugar or cinnamon-sugar, for dusting
In a bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
In another bowl, combine the ricotta, pumpkin, egg, and vanilla; stir to blend well. Pour the pumpkin mixture into the flour mixture; stir until well combined.
Cover and set the mixture aside for 30 minutes to an hour.
Heat the oil in a deep fryer to 375 degrees F.
Drop tablespoons of the batter into the hot oil, a few at a time; don't crowd them. Fry the zeppole, turning occasionally, until they are light golden brown, 1-2 minutes per batch. Transfer the cooked zeppole to a paper-towel lined plate. While they are still warm, dust with confectioners' sugar or roll them in cinnamon-sugar.
Zeppole are best served warm.
Leftovers can be reheated the next day in a 350 degree F. oven for about 5 minutes. Re-dust the zeppole with sugar before serving.
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With the simple addition of pumpkin puree and some spices, you can turn traditional zeppole into something special for an autumn treat or to add to your Thanksgiving dessert table.