• Jacqueline Liger

A Mardi-Gras deliciousness

Isn’t it fascinating how connected we are with our past? A certain aroma in a garden or kitchen, a distinct flavor, or a particular time of year floods us with feelings and sensations forever tied to a lifetime moment stuck in the past. For me, such memory triggers are particularly tied to being abroad. I catch myself getting sentimental whenever I encounter heartfelt traditions from my childhood in Italy.

I am always moved by memories when Mardi Gras rolls around. The last day of Carnevale, this colorful Italian tradition is filled with parades, parties, pranks, masquerades, music and endless food.

Beads, feathers, confetti, masks, vibrant fabrics: all invited to the party!

But Carnevale wouldn't be Carnevale without delicious, warm and soft “Castagnole” (doughnut holes)! Making them is a tradition in my family that, even though it requires deep frying, I’m not ready to give up. This year I decided to finally introduce my boys to it, and here is the result!

Simple, quick, low budget and absolutely delicious, these doughnut holes bring me back home and to wonderful moments spent in my family’s kitchen waiting for spring to come. This dessert needs no formalities, just people to share its warm and sweet sentimentality with... and yes, a nice toasty espresso would be nice as well! Buon Appetito!

Doughnut Holes


1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour I 1/3 cup sugar I 2 teaspoons baking powder I 1/2 teaspoon salt I 1/2 teaspoon of Cinnamon I 1 large egg I 1/2 cup whole milk (I've used almond milk) I 2 tablespoons unsalted butter (I have used lactose free butter) I oil for frying I 1/4 cup sugar for rolling the doughnut


Combine all dry ingredients flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and cinnamon into a bowl. In another bowl, you can combine the egg, the milk and the melted butter and mix. When ready add to dry ingredients and keep mixing.

When ingredients are combined, in a pot heat oil to 375°. When temperature reaches, drop a small portion of the dough into the oil and let it fry until brown. I used a ice cream scoop to make the portion of each donuts and discovered that when ready they will turn on their own. Keep doing it until done with the dough.

Place the doughnut on a paper towel and allow them to drain and cool down for a few seconds. Immediately after roll the donuts into the sugar and plate them.

© 2019 by Jacqueline Liger I www.jacquelineliger.com