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Apple fritters of nonna Sara. Carnival’s tastes

Apple fritters of nonna Sara. Carnival's tastes

I have to confess something.

During Carnival, I don’t love to dress up.
On the other hand, I love all the sweets of this period.

Apple fritters of nonna Sara. Carnival's tastes

Me and the Carnival season

I love the masks of the Italian tradition: Arlecchino, Pulcinella, Colombina.
And the beautiful costumes of the Venice Carnival.

The important thing is to admire and not have to dress up.
I didn’t even love it when I was little.

There has always been little harmony between Carnival and me.
For me, adventures came from the pages of the books I devoured, not from wearing a princess costume. Over the years, I loved no one of the dresses that I have worn to look like a child like the others.
Each time, I would choose outfits that either clunked my movements or didn’t fit me well.

Or maybe it was me who saw myself that way. I don’t know, but that feeling spoiled the mood and the party.

Spring Fairy

The memory is a nightmare.

Sometimes I rethink my super pinky maxi dress, covered with tulle, leaves, and branches that were supposed to make me a spring fairy.

Ah! And how could I forget the charming hat? I remember it, adorned with branches that flew off my head with every step. And, above all, that made me look more like a deer than a mild spring fairy.
I still get anxious at the thought.

I had to walk while holding my hat steady with one hand and maneuvering branches and flowers with the other. It was the height of my bad mood because of a dress.

I am sure, neither before nor since, has there ever been a spring fairy with a tragic impulse to pyromania.

When I was a child was enough an apple crumpet to celebrate the Carnival.

The traditional masks of Bologna

Do you know the traditional masks of Emilia-Romagna?
The most famous are Doctor Balanzone, Fagiolino, Sganapino, and Sandrone.

The mask of the doctor, the most prominent, contains a reference to the learned law graduate who gets by as best he can.

Fagiolino originated from puppetry, a popular form of entertainment in Bologna since ancient times; Sganapino is similar to Fagiolino, only he is a street urchin; instead, Sandrone is the somewhat ignorant peasant who turns out to be as cunning as a fox.

The fried sweets of the Bolognese Carnival

As I told you, what I especially love about the Carnival season are its sweets, almost always fried.

Frappe or sfrappole (on the blog, you can find my home recipe), zeppole, castagnole, topini, frittelle. In Bologna, people also make sweet fried tagliatelle.

My grandmother Sara used to fry big trays of sfrappole, sprinkled with alchermes, that my cousins and I would devour for merenda.

Often, in the quiet of a kitchen all to ourselves, Grandma would take an apple and, with a knowing look, set a bowl on the table. Nonna Sara called them spirited pancakes because she used to add a little Marsala liqueur in the batter. But rum or no spirit is fine, too.

The future starts today. What flavor do you want to give it?

Buona cucina, Monica

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Apple Fritters Recipe

Apple Fritters Recipe

serves 4
List of the Ingredients

1 or 2 floury apples
00 flour, 180 g
baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon
sugar, 50 g
2 eggs
dry Marsala or other liqueur, 2 tablespoons
filtered juice of half a lemon
grated peel of half a lemon
several tablespoons cold water, preferably sparkling water
salt and clove powder, a pinch of both

for garnish, powdered or granulated sugar
for frying, seed oil


In a bowl mix flour, sugar, baking powder, clove scent powder and grated lemon peel.

Add eggs and water and mix until the batter is soft but not too runny.

Peel apples, remove the center core with a fruit digger, and cut slices almost 1 cm thick (not too thin or they will break, not too thick or they will not cook well).

Completely dip into the batter one slice at a time, several times, then fry in the hot oil.

Fry one or two pancakes at a time for a couple of minutes.
As soon as they become golden, lay the pancakes on paper towels. Continue until you run out of apple slices.

Sprinkle with powdered or granulated sugar.

Eat them hot!

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