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Make your own: Shrovetide doughnuts

Author: Polona Prešeren

Date: 16. February 2020

Time to read: 3 min

Many Shrovetide customs and superstitions have been around since pagan times. On Ash Wednesday, for example, it was customary for a woman to be the first to enter the house and to dance. By doing so, they believed that their turnips would grow big. Folk tradition also says that during Shrovetide, people, livestock and spirits must not be hungry, so there should be plenty of delicacies on the table.

There is no doubt about the latter – Shrovetide has always been a time to celebrate with plenty of hearty food and drink. Perhaps that is the reason why this period was followed by obligatory fasting. Even today, people forget about their diets and enjoy in delicious icing-sugar dusted doughnuts, "flancati" or "miške".

The most typical Shrovetide delicacies are doughnuts, and people still like to compete whose will be bigger and filled with the most jam.

The most famous doughnuts come from an old inn in the village of Trojane, and these are a treat any day, not only during Shrovetide. They are certainly the most renowned doughnuts in Slovenia.

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In Trojane, the mass production of doughnuts started in the 1960s and developed over time. Initially, only a few dozen were fried a day, but because they were so good, their reputation spread rapidly and today, between 2,000 and 5,000 doughnuts are fried daily. Doughnuts are usually filled with apricot jam or, sometimes, with vanilla cream. They are traditionally dusted with icing sugar, although some are chocolate-coated and sprinkled with desiccated coconut. Below is the recipe for traditional Trojane doughnuts with apricot jam.

Recipe

Ingredients:

600 g white flour

1 tsp salt

5 egg yolks

80 g sugar

80 g butter

100 g raw butter

200–300 ml milk

1 tbsp rum

Grated lemon zest

Apricot jam for filling

Icing sugar

Preparation:

First, prepare a yeast mixture from crumbled yeast, a tablespoon of sugar, 2 tablespoons of milk and a little flour.

Put the rest of the flour into a bowl, make a small well in the middle and pour in the yeast mixture. Let the dough rise.

In a separate bowl, mix the lukewarm milk, melted butter, egg yolks, sugar, salt, lemon zest and rum, and add the mixture to the dough.

Knead into a soft and supple dough, and leave it to rise in a warm place for at least an hour.

Roll out the dough on a floured surface until about 1.5 cm thick and cut out circles measuring 5–8 cm in diameter.

Cover the doughnuts with a cloth and leave them to rise for another half an hour.

Heat up oil in a pan and fry the doughnuts, first on one side and then on the other. Take the doughnuts out of the oil with a skimmer and place them on a paper towel to drain. Use a syringe to fill the doughnuts with apricot jam. Arrange the doughnuts on a tray and dust them with icing sugar.

 

Source: Janez Bogataj, Taste Slovenia, 2007