A fried pastry is always good! Many traditional cuisines fry pastry for special occasions. In the Italian tradition the fried thin pastry goes by many names crostoli, cenci, galani, sfrappole, bugie, stracci... the list seems endless. In Australia for some reason we have renamed the Italian fried pastry - storch...perhaps a form of stracci! In any case, I'm not making Italian fried pastry! I am making Norwegian fried pastry called Fattigman which is flavoured with cardamom. This recipe is the 48th recipe I have made from A Baker's Odyssey by Greg Patent.
6 large egg yolks
1/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon butter, melted
1 tablespoon brandy
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 cups plain flour
oil for deep frying
Beat the egg yolks with an electric mixer until thick and pale, about 5 minutes. Add the sugar gradually and continue to beat for another 5 minutes until the mixture is thick. On a low speed add in the butter, brandy, vanilla, cardamom and salt.
In a small bowl beat the cream until it thickens a little. Fold in the egg mixture and then with a wooden spoon mix in the flour. It will be a thick, sticky dough. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
The next day prepare to fry the fattigman. I used a deep frying pan which I filled with oil to about 2 - 3cm of oil. Use a deep fry thermometer to ensure the oil stays between 180C - 190C and heat the oil as you roll out the dough.
Dust a work surface with flour and divide the dough into quarters. Take one quarter and keep the others covered so they don't dry out. Dust with flour and roll out the portioned dough until very thin. It should be no more the 1/16 of an inch which is about 1.5mm. If you can get it thinner, all the better.
Flour the work surface to prevent sticking.
Traditionally fattigman is cut into large diamond shapes
with a slit in the middle of each piece.
The tip on the diamond is pulled through the slit. However I think it is perfectly ok to cut the fattigman anyway you wish,
Lower each pastry into the hot oil. Wait about 5 seconds then flip them over to brown on the other side. Flip them over again after about 5 or 10 seconds and keep repeating until the fattigman are blistery all over. It should only take 30 seconds in all. Remove to paper towel to drain.
Repeat with all the dough,
It is not traditional but you can give them a dusting of powdered sugar before serving.
These will keep for 2 to 3 weeks in an airtight container.