This is the recipe that started it all. Being: Walking tacos, Corn dogs, Caramel apples. I had it in my head that I could make Elephant Ears. I did spend a summer working in one of the junk food carts here and there for different festivals, art fairs and carnivals. I saw this first hand.
Plus I kinda like deep frying stuff. Seeing something burn and fry into an edible delight is a weird hobby of mine. Ingredients instantly become edible. I mean!! I love it.
This ended up being a two step (and multiple day) process for me – but you can do it all in one day. I promise.
# Crisco (Important. Must be shortening.)
# Vegetable oil (for frying, not pictured here.)
Start by melting your shortening in a pan on the stove. (Recipe calls for 6 TBS)
Add 1 1/2 Cups Milk.
Add 2 TBS sugar.
Stir to combine and help the shortening melt.
It’ll look like this when it’s melted and ready to set aside, remove from heat and let cool to approx 110 degrees F. (I used a meat thermometer to help me figure out when that was.)
Get ready to combine your dry ingredients together, if you have one of these goddesses on hand … bring her out. Pet her nicely. Kiss her. Take her photo.
I like to think this one has a name … so I whisper sweet nothings into Better Betty’s ear.
When your milk/shortening and sugar mixture is cooled down – add 2 packages dry yeast and let sit and get happy and bubbly.
When bubbles and happiness (it’ll rise) are going on add the mixture to your mixer bowl.
Add 4 Cups flour.
(And a teaspoon salt, no photo.)
Mix it up!
You made dough!
Generously flour a work surface and plop the dough onto it.
Knead until you have a nice smooth, elastic ball. A lot of recipes call for kneading for about 8 minutes. Sure – that sounds fun to write in a recipe and some people (ehum, Mother.) will set a timer and actually do that … I have better things to do for 8 whole minutes than spank dough. Unless I’m angry, then I usually knead it for 15. And it’s cheap therapy.
But when the sun is shinning and you have 5 other recipes/dishes to make and photograph … you can cut that waaaaay down and still get wonderful results.
Just being honest.
Place back in bowl and cover with towel (or plastic wrap) and let rise for 45 minutes.
It’ll look like this:
From here you can skip ahead to rolling out balls and frying them or if you’re short on time – cover it and stick in the fridge. For the record I had mine covered in the fridge for 4 days.
When you’re ready to fry them, get your vegetable oil out and a frying pan. Pour about 1 Cup oil into the pan and heat up. Nice and hot.
While it’s heating up, grab a ball of dough and on a floured surface (I did it on top of my slipmat) and roll out.
Place the dough carefully into the hot oil and watch it bubble. It’ll (should) happen fairly soon. If it doesn’t – your oil isn’t hot enough yet.
Leave it for a minute or so, turn it over.
Drain on paper towels and quickly sprinkle with cinnamon/sugar.
Transfer to wax or parchment paper to serve.
For a time saver look what my dear friend and reader did today:
Instead of making the dough and waiting for it to rise, etc she just used Jumbo Biscuits – rolled em out and then fried em up. They’re smaller and a bit dough-ier she said but they look amazing (and I, myself, love a little extra dough.) Thanks for sharing, Heidi!