On “Fastnachtstagen”, or carnival days, people like to eat and drink as much as possible. Carnival food includes a range of sweet, fatty, and sour treats which can be traced back to the origins of “Fastnacht”. Traditional food is just as much a part of the Swabian-Alemannic “Fastnacht” as the traditional costumes. Like the “Fastnacht” itself, these “Fastnacht” recipes have their origin in the Christian calendar. “Aschermittwoch” (Ash Wednesday), the Wednesday following “Fastnacht”, is when Lent begins; a 40-day period of fasting and prayer in preparation for the Easter festival. Since eating anything that comes from animals or fish was forbidden during Lent, in the Middle Ages stocks and perishable goods were consumed before Lent began. This is how many of the treats came into being. To show you how good they are, here is a recipe for our sweet “Fasnetsküchle” (carnival cakes).
Ingredients for four people: 500 g flour, half a teaspoon of salt, 80 g butter, 2 eggs, 15 g yeast with two tablespoons of milk and one tablespoon of sugar mixed together in a cup, one pound of fat for baking, confectioner's sugar for sprinkling.
Sieve flour into a bowl and mix it with salt. Create a well in the middle and add the yeast mixture. Mix together until it becomes a viscous dough. Sprinkle some flour over the dough. Leave the dough in a warm place for 15 to 20 minutes. The dough is ready when cracks appear in the flour layer. Add all the other ingredients, stir first, then knead. Leave the dough again until it has doubled in size. Cut out small round cakes from the dough, bake them in hot fat, and sprinkle them with sugar while they are still hot.