Photo credit/Jessica Fiess-Hill
Every year, just before Easter, we have a large family get-together. We all get an invite to my aunt’s house for special dinner. The whole family can not wait for this special day to arrive. We all set our plans around this special day. You may ask yourself what is so special about this invitation. The answer is Fastnacht Kuchen. That is a special pastry that is made just before Easter to celebrate the Easter holiday.
To start making these tasty treats, you need a large flat place to place the dough, so they can set for several hours before cooking. You then lay the dough out and cut the dough in pieces about the size of a silver dollar. Since we are feeding as many as twenty-five people and we don’t want anybody to leave hungry, we make upwards of five hundred of those little morsels. You may think that is a lot but knowing about how much the people like that meal, it may not be enough. Time will tell.
We then go into the garage and clear it out of everything and set up a table for cooking. We take two deep frying pans and melt cooking oil in the pan until the liquid is about an inch and a half deep and at a frying temperature. While we wait for the process to begin we set up a table a coating of paper towels on it to absorb the run off grease.
Now that everything is ready, the magic begins. The dough is placed in the grease, one at a time and let to float. It does not take long and that dough puffs up a turns a golden brown, It takes less than two minutes for this to happen and they are then taken out of the grease and placed on the paper towels to cool off. When that is done, they are then picked up one a time and placed in bag filled with a mixture of cinnamon and sugar and given a healthy shake so that that are covered with those tasty crystals. Then they are taken out of the bag and placed a pie rack to cool down. The smell in the air while this is taking place varies from burning grease to something very inviting..Every ones taste buds are brought to their peak as those morsels cool down.
What seems like hours, we then sit down and proceed to devour fashnacht kuchen. Everyone raves about the meal and wonder why we only do this one during the whole year. When you realize how much work is put in their making, the mess and the smell of burnt grease you realize once a year is enough. But it is well worth any inconvenience that you have to partake of this wonderful meal.
Story by Synapse House Member, Tom W.