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Frittelle alla Veneziana, Frittole (Carnival fritters, dough balls, with yeast, with Grappa, pine nuts and raisins)
Originated from: Northern Italy/ Veneto
Occasion: Carnival
Contributed by: Mary Melfi

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3 cups flour*
1 large egg
1 cup warm water*
1 3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 package dry fast acting yeast (2 1/2 teaspoon)
1/8 cup Grappa
1/8 cup pine nuts
1/4 cup raisins

*Measurement is approximate

Vegetable oil for deep frying
Icing sugar for dusting


1. Warm up water (Should be "tepid").

2. Place fast acting yeast in the warm water.

3. Let the yeast rest for 10 minutes. If the water foams up, then the yeast is good for use.

4. Beat the eggs.

5. Add the milk to the eggs.

6. In another bowl mix the flour, sugar, salt, pine nuts and raisins.

7. Add the liquid ingredients to the solid ingredients. The result should look a bit like pancake batter -- thick and doughy. If the dough is too soft add more flour, if the dough is too hard, add a touch more milk.

8. Place the batter in a container with a lid.

9. Cover the container with a towel or blanket.

10. Let the dough rest for 2 to 3 hours.

11. Heat up the oil.

12. Wet a tablespoon in water. Scoop up the batter with the wet tablespoon and drop off the tablespoon of batter into the hot oil. Repeat two or three times.

13. Cook the fritelle, turning them over, until they are golden brown.

14.. Remove with a slotted spoon when they are ready.

15. Drain on paper towels.

16. Continue until all the fritelle are done.

17. Cool.

18. Before serving, dust with icing sugar.


These fritters are relatively easy to do. Unlike some of the dough balls that use baking powder, they double in size once they are fried. Still, unless one has some childhood associations or one really loves fried foods, this style of sweet, is not for everyone. For different versions of this fritter visit: www.istrianet.org/istria/gastronomy/osteria/fritole.htm. Photo: by the contributor.

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