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Olie-Koecken (Knickerbockers)


  • 2 tablespoons active dry yeast
  • 1 cup milk
  • 12 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 5 cups flour
  • Confectioners' sugar
  • Lard or vegetable oil


  1. Heat 1/4 cup milk to lukewarm; proof the yeast in the milk.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar. Beat the eggs to a froth, then beat in the remaining milk.
  3. Combine this with the butter and sugar.
  4. Add the salt and the proofed yeast.
  5. Sift in the flour. Work this into a soft dough; cover and set aside to double in bulk.
  6. When the dough is ready, punch it down, and if it is too sticky to handle, dust your hands and the work surface with a little flour — 2 tablespoons should do it. Knead well and form into walnut-size balls weighing approximately 1 ounce.
  7. Let the balls of dough rest for 10 to 15 minutes, or until well risen.
  8. While the balls of dough are rising, bring lard to 375 degrees F in a deep fryer.
  9. Add dough balls and fry evenly until golden brown on all sides.
  10. Drain, cool, and roll in confectioners' sugar.
  11. Stack pyramid fashion and garnish with little sprigs of boxwood.

You can use an olie-koeck or ebelskiver pan. Heat the pan on top of stove and put 1/4 teaspoon of lard in each compartment. Let the fat come to a smoking boil, then add your balls of dough. Roll them occasionally so that they fry evenly on all sides. When golden brown, they are ready. Drain, cool, and roll in confectioners' sugar.

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