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Fritule, Croatian Doughnuts Flavored with Brandy and Lemon Zest Recipe
 
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Fritule, Croatian Doughnuts Flavored with Brandy and Lemon Zest
Flavors of Croatia
Total time: 30 to 60 minutes

Prep. time: 20 minutes
Rising time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: A few minutes

 
Difficulty: Easy
Chef's Note
These are like little doughnuts. At Christmas time you'll find a plate of fritule in every Croatian household, even the most modest. Grownups and children alike can't get enough of them!

There are several versions of fritule. On the Solin, the recipe did not include rakija (brandy) or lemon. It was so cold that the rakija was kept for drinking, and the cook saved the lemons for fish!

The cooking time is very short, but be sure the doughnuts are nicely browned before removing them from the hot oil, otherwise they'll take on strange shapes. It's advisable to fry just a few balls of batter at a time, shaped with two dessert spoons - too many and they may stick together.

Jacline La Fleche - Christmas on the Solin
Ingredients
- 6 tsp. (2 packets) of dry yeast
- 125 ml (1/2 cup) warm water
- 250 ml (1 cup) + 1 pinch sugar
- 1.75 liters (7 cups) all-purpose flour
- 500 ml (2 cups) boiling water
- 125 ml (1/2 cup) rakija, plum brandy or other brandy
- 2 tsp. vanilla
- 1/2 tsp. grated nutmeg
- 250 ml (1 cup) raisins
- Zest of 1 lemon
- Oil for frying
- Icing sugar
Method
  1. Mix the yeast with the warm water and a pinch of sugar and set aside until risen and foamy. Place the flour in large bowl, forming a well. Add the hot water gradually and blend with a wooden spoon. Keep stirring until the dough begins to form a ball.
  2. Continue beating as you gradually add the 1 cup sugar, brandy, vanilla, nutmeg, raisins and lemon rind. Blend in the yeast mixture and then let the batter rest for 15 to 20 minutes. Meanwhile heat the cooking oil in a deep pot or fryer (the oil should be at least 6 cm / 2 1/2" deep).
  3. When the oil is hot enough (test by dropping in a small piece of the batter, which should sizzle, but not burn), drop in the batter by well-rounded 1/2 tablespoon measures. You will have to dip the measuring spoon in water between spoonfuls of batter to clean it off. You may also have to coax the batter off the spoon.
  4. Do not overcrowd the frying pot. Ensure the fritters are turned so that all sides are golden. When browned, transfer with a slotted spoon to paper towels, let cool slightly, then roll in powdered sugar. Arrange on a serving platter.
 
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