Last night, as I was skyping with the lovely Amanda, I mentioned the glorious box of deliciousness sitting on my table, filled with Fasnachts.

And she had no clue what the hell they were.

Apparently, I tend to forget that not everyone lives in the middle of Amish/Dutch country.

These are fasnachts:

Fasnachts are an enormously big deal to the Pennsylvania Dutch community and the general area of Lancaster, Pa. My grandmother is the sole reason I have access to these sweet, buttery babies, since she’s the only one crazy enough to wait in line at a Catholic church for over three hours to get them. Bless that woman’s never ending patience.

The pastry is traditionally  made the day before Lent starts, as a way to use up sugar, butter, lard, and other fats, so you’ll have less chance of caving. Once Amanda realized what the heck I was talking about, she talked about how they’re essentially like Paczki (Polish Donughts). Apparently, Paczki are filled with jelly or cream. Us Dutchies like to keep things simple, and are usually made one of two ways: with or without a powdered sugar coating.

As you can see, I prefer them without.

Pa Dutch food gets a bad rap for being bland and boring, but Fasnachts are the one thing that we really get right. And I mean, since another state has cornered the market on celebrating with copious amounts of liquor, brightly colored beads, and skin, why not ingest an immense amount of pastry? (Ben and I may have eaten 5 out of the 12 in less than a day. Whoops.) 

Do you observe Lent? What are you giving up this year? Will you celebrate/indulge beforehand?



  1. CrippledGirl says

    They sell them for two days (yesterday & today), which I’m assuming is to deal with the mass quantities they have to make. Professor Google said that Eastern Rite Catholics start today, on “Clean Monday”. *shrug* I just knew I wasn’t waiting to eat mine!

  2. Amanda says

    Ah ok! I was a little confused about the timeline. However, I commented with only a mere 3 hours of sleep and sans coffee. No wonder I was confused.

    I’m getting mine tonight for fat Tuesday. Yum!

  3. says

    I first learned about them while in school in Northeast PA and now they’re sold at almost all the grocery stores in Buffalo, NY where I’m from (they werent like 10 yrs ago when I used to work at these stores), so I’m stoked to get them even when I’m not near my school stomping grounds!
    Danielle recently posted…Lent 2012My Profile

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