Bonnie Boyer's Fasnacht (Pennsylvania-Dutch Fried Doughnuts)

Recipe courtesy of Bonnie Boyer
Show: My Grandmother's Ravioli Episode: Please Pass the Pig Stomach
TOTAL TIME: 4 hr 30 min
Prep: 20 min
Inactive Prep: 3 hr 50 min
Cook: 20 min
YIELD: 3 dozen
LEVEL: Easy

ingredients

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Directions

Special equipment: 2 brown paper bags, 3-inch cookie cutter

Place the potatoes in a medium saucepan, cover with cold water by 2 inches and season generously with salt. Bring to a boil over high heat, then lower the heat to maintain a gentle simmer and cook until very tender, about 15 minutes. Reserve 1 1/2 cups of the potato cooking water. Drain and mash the potatoes until smooth. Set the mashed potatoes aside and cool slightly.

In a medium bowl, stir together the mashed potatoes, reserved potato cooking water, sugar and yeast. Cover with a tea towel and let the mixture rise for 20 minutes; it will look foamy.

Using a sieve, strain the mixture into a large bowl, smoothing out any lumps. Stir in the eggs and melted butter. Stir 5 cups of the flour, one cup at a time, until a dough starts to form. Gently knead the remaining 1 cup of flour in until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and forms a large ball. Cover with a tea towel and put in a warm place to rise for 3 hours.

Dust some flour onto a baking sheet. On a well-floured surface, roll out the dough to 1/2-inch thick. Using a 3-inch cookie cutter, cut out the doughnuts and set on the prepared baking sheet. Cover lightly with a tea towel, and let rise for 30 minutes.

Line a baking sheet with a split paper bag. In a deep fryer or Dutch oven, pour enough oil to fill no more than halfway up the side. Heat the oil until a deep-frying thermometer inserted in the oil reaches 365 degrees F.

Gently place the doughnuts into the oil, two at a time. Cook until golden brown, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer the doughnuts to the prepared baking sheet to absorb some of the oil. Place the doughnuts in the remaining paper bag with a heaping spoonful of sugar and shake gently until the doughnuts are thoroughly coated. You may leave some plain to slice in half and spread with molasses if using. Serve immediately.

Notes

A viewer or guest of the show, who may not be a professional cook, provided this recipe. The Food Network Kitchens have not tested it for home use and therefore cannot make any representation as to the results.

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