It's true. An entire day of the year is named after our family. Or your family, too, if your last name is Shrove.
Last year I actually made Fasnachts, and I wrote a photo essay to document the event.
Step one: Find a couple of cute guys to be your sous-chefs.
Step two: Mash some 'taters. Lots and lots of 'taters.
Step three: After all the mixin' is done, think, "This is way too runny." Reread the recipe. Add another cup of flour.
Step four: Melt several galoops of lard. (That is an official culinary measurement.) Feel your arteries harden and your waist begin to bulge. This is the authentic frying agent of choice, for the whole point of fasnachts on Fasnacht Day is to rid your pantry of lard before Lent begins the following day. Of course this really is a moot point when you actually have to go out to the store to buy lard for the first time ever just for the sake of the donuts and never, ever keep it on hand.
Step five: Decide that you don't need to follow the recipe which says that you must roll out the gooey dough and cut it into squares or rectangles. Surely, you can just drop them into little dough puddles in the lard.
Step six: Realize when fasnachts come out raw in the middle that perhaps recipe writer knew what she was talking about after all and make the big, big mess needed to roll out gooey dough. Cut into squares (representing the four Gospels) or triangles (representing the Trinity). Holy mess.
Step seven: Sigh with relief when the next batch comes out golden brown and fully cooked.
Step eight: Sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar so that your blood sugar will rise and your heart will race, pumping your blood at a high pressure through the arteries, thereby counteracting the effects of the lard.
Step nine: Distribute four fasnachts to your Four Fasnachts.
Step ten: Fry up all your dough until your kitchen smells like a truck-stop and your shirt and floor are covered with flour and lard and you are left with a donut mountain.
Step eleven: Wonder where in the world the sous-chefs ran off to now that it's time to clean up.
So what to do this year? After revisiting my essay, I'm fairly certain that we're going to skip the authentic fasnachts this year. Are you disappointed?
It's all about pastry, right? Why limit yourself to just one kind?
This year's pastry of choice: cinnamon rolls for lunch. And then to complete the day in Fasnacht style, waffles and authentic maple syrup for dinner. And a trip to the gym tomorrow.
Hey, Fasnacht Day only comes once a year!