For me, holidays are nice…but often stressful. Although it’s a time of amazing food, fun parties with friends, and great music, it’s also a time where I’m forced to hang out with frustrating relatives, attend obligatory events, and take a whole lot of work on my plate. I also end up self reflecting and comparing myself to those around me. Thoughts starting with “I want that” or “I wish that was me” or “why is everything so difficult for me” stream through my head and build up. It’s part jealousy, part letting myself down, and part wanting to feel like my life is progressing faster than it is.
What do you do when you’re frustrated with life? Well, I guess do something that reminds you of calmer, more fun filled times. Something that brings back memories and makes you realize that life isn’t so bad. So…I asked myself what cheers me up? Food. Okay, what kind of food? Carb loaded food. So I just made funnel cake in December to remind me of summers chillin’ on the boardwalk where I can people watch, lounge with friends, and laugh hysterically with powdered sugar all over my face.
Funnel cakes are delicious. The little crispy wisps are covered in powdered sugar and the sugar melts when the cake is hot, creating a sticky glaze that you want to lick off your fingers. Now that I think about it, funnel cake is probably one of my favorite desserts. Especially the ones from Point Pleasant, NJ…right on the boardwalk. It’s where I spent SO many nights as a kid and teenager, joking around with my friends and family. They were good times with less stress…so I’m going to focus on that and try to feel less stressed out this holiday season!
Vegetable Oil (varies)
1 1/2 cups milk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups flour
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon salt
Powdered sugar, to taste
Fill a large pot with about 2 inches of vegetable oil. Bring oil to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
In a large bowl, mix all of the dry ingredients.
In another large bowl, whisk together all of the wet ingredients (milk, eggs, vanilla). Add the dry to the wet and mix until smooth.
Using a funnel or pastry bag (I use a ziplock with a corner snipped off), carefully pipe the batter into the hot oil. Start in the center and quickly swirl yourself out until you get your desired size. Fry until golden brown on one side, then flip and cook the other.
Remove and drain on paper towels.
While still hot, dust with powdered sugar, cinnamon sugar, or fruit/whipped cream. Enjoy!