Let's celebrate Mardi Gras / Fat Tuesday by making - and especially by eating! - some "crustoli" (typical carnival-ish Italian sweets). Alike all carnival-ish treats around the world, the crustoli are..... fried! But they are not too sweet. They are not too greasy. They are not too filling. They are crispy. They are tasty. They are gooooood!!!!!!!
2 cups flour
1/4 cup sugar
4 tbs softened butter
2 tbs dry white wine or grapa or marsala
1 tsp baking powder
sunflower oil (to fry)
powdered sugar (to dust)
1. Place the flour on a clean work surface. Make a well in the center.
2. Add the eggs, softened butter, a pinch of salt, sugar, baking powder and white wine in the middle of the well.
3. Use your fingertips to gradually blend until the dough starts to come together.
4. Then knead on a lightly floured work surface until smooth.
5. Form a ball. Cover and set aside for 1 hour in a cool place.
6. Roll out the dough with a well-floured rolling pin to a thickness of 1/8 inch.
(6. To make it easier, you can also use a pasta machine - that's what I did!)
7. Use a ravioli cutter to cut into strips, diamonds,... Every shape that comes in your mind is fine. The typical one is a little bit trickier when you do it for the first time: cut rectangles of 2 by 4 inch, then cut a slit lengthwise along the center of each pastry strip. Loop one end of the strip through the slit.8. Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat.
9. Fry the crustoli, a few at a time, for 1-2 minutes each side or until the pastry bubbles and the crustoli are golden and crisp.
10. Use tongs to remove the crustoli, allowing them to drain on a paper towel-lined plate.
11. When the crustoli are cool, dust them with powdered sugar to serve.