When I was growing up, the warm days of early fall meant lots of festivals and fairs with amazing things to eat. I remember sausage and pepper sandwiches, fresh-squeezed lemonade, cannolis and — my all-time favorite — fried dough. I don't mean funnel cakes, which are made by drizzling pancake-like batter directly into hot oil in a swirly patttern. This is actual yeasted dough that's been allowed to rise once, fried in pieces and dusted with powdered sugar.
In Endicott, New York, where I grew up, it's known as Pizza Fritte because it's traditionally made with pizza dough. It comes in a large circle about the size of a paper plate, and it's always dusted with powdered sugar. When my husband and I moved to Burlington, I was delighted to discover that a version of it existed here, known simply as Fried Dough and served up with a choice of sweet toppings.
This year we missed the Champlain Valley Fair. We were all too busy with school and work to coordinate a family trip. I was feeling deprived of my yearly dose of fried dough, so I decided to give it a go in my own kitchen. Guess what? It was easy and fun. Now it can be fried-dough season any time!
I like this dough recipe because it comes out just a tiny bit sweet when it's fried — the perfect crispy, chewy base for honey and butter, powdered sugar, a chocolate drizzle or — my new favorite — sprinkles!
I love fair season for one reason — the food.