Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Elephant Ears

It really is the food that draws me to the fair. I love the elephant ears! They're my favorite! Drizzled with butter and sprinkled with lots of cinnamon when still warm, I think I can smell them the moment I enter the gate. I like to save them for last though, first walking through barn after barn viewing the animals, building after building full of flowers, quilts and other displays. I try to see just how long I can hold out before I must go get one. Enjoying a hamburger and fries for lunch, I stroll through the carnival and midway games, check out the vendor booths, all the while looking forward to savoring the cinnamon flavor of a chewy, sweet elephant ear.
I saw sheep in jailbird clothing.
The cutest little babies!
Someone spinning wool.
Spooning pigs.
A little girl in a pen.
Old Glory made of vegetables.
Shelf after shelf of preserves.Hundreds of prize-winning dahlias. Racks of pretty sweaters for sale.
Chickens strutting their stuff.
Melons that seemed fun.
This one reminded me of Bud!
There was a grandmother's fan quilt.
People trying out a mattress.
Friends trying on cowboy hats.
And so very much more.

Make your own Elephant Ears!

1 1/4 cups milk
1/4-1/2 cup butter
1 package active dry yeast
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup water (105 to 115 degrees F.)
5 1/2-6 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon sal
1 dash freshly grated nutmeg
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
vegetable oil (for frying)
Powdered sugar or cinnamon sugar
Heat milk with butter until butter melts. Set aside to cool to lukewarm. Stir yeast and 1 teaspoon sugar into warm water and let stand until foamy, about 5 to 10 minutes.
In a large bowl, combine milk and yeast mixtures with 2 1/2 cups flour, salt, and nutmeg. Stir until smooth. Cover and let stand until bubbly, 30 minutes.
Stir in beaten eggs, then add additional flour to make a soft but not sticky dough. Turn dough onto a floured board and knead until smooth, supple, and elastic, about 8 minutes.
Return dough to bowl, cover, and let rise in a warm spot until dough is doubled, about 1 1/2 hours. Punch down and divide into 4 pieces. Divide each piece into 4 or 5 pieces.
Put several inches of oil in a large, deep pan such as a chicken fryer or heavy dutch oven. Heat to about 360 degrees F. Work each ball of dough with the hands, shaping into a large disk, about 10 inches long and 6 inches wide.
Fry one at a time, turning once, until nicely browned. Drain on paper towels and sprinkle with powdered sugar or cinnamon sugar while hot. Serve at once.

Serving Size 1 elephant ears 88g
Recipe makes 16 elephant ears
Calories 245
Calories from Fat 44
Total Fat 5.0g
Saturated Fat 2.6g
Monounsaturated Fat 1.4g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.4g
Trans Fat 0.0g
Cholesterol 49mg
Sodium 189mg
Total Carbohydrate 43.3g
Dietary Fiber 1.3g
Sugars 9.6g
Protein 6.4g
Held in Lynden each summer, the Northwest Washington Fair runs this year from August 11th through the 16th. Driving Directions and calendar of events are available on their website. If you go to the fair this summer, take a moment to see if you can smell the cinnamon on those elephant ears as you walk through the gate.

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