Wednesday, December 24, 2008


This is a clipping from my grandmother's recipe book, which, according to my mother, came from the Jamestown, ND newspaper sometime before 1934, when my grandfather died of pneumonia. This recipe is interesting, because one, it assume the reader can cook and bake, and two, it assumes you'll find some business for 10 egg whites (like containerizing them and freezing them for the rest of eternity -- that's what I'm planning), and three, that you'll know what sort of flavoring might be good.

Any way, this was a staple christmas favorite in my family from the 1920's until well before my grandmother passed in 1993 (at 97). It's a bit of a simple dough deep fried and coated with sugar. I don't think my grandmother used lard (my mother says peanut oil, but I am thinking crisco), but I did. The recipe was lost in a pile of stuff at my mother's, but after a fairly long search today, I found this little scrap of paper.

And it says:

Fattigmand (sic, Fattigmann is more common)
10 egg yolks
2 eggs, whole
10 teaspoons sugar
10 teaspoons cream
Any flavoring can be used

Beat yolks and whole eggs; add sugar and beat. Add cream, and enough flour to roll like cookies. Roll very thin; cut in diamond shapes, punch holes with end of knife, and fry in deep (very hot) lard.

So I made them. It wasn't until I took a stab at poke holes in the dough with tip of knife and heard the scrape of the knife against the board that I began to hear my grandmother talking in my head ... "Keep the board clean, with a thin dust of flour, roll this really thin. Make sure the oil is hot, you can tell by the way the water boils off as soon as it hits the oil". I could all of the sudden smell the smeels of her kitchen -- the mysterious starting to roll back, exposing themselves.

Now if I could just find the recipe for the sticky buns ...
Note: It turns out my memory of events was a bit off, my ex-wife claims that she's never seen these, which means my grandmother had stopped making them before 1983-ish.

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