Well well well… here we are in 2013! Now that we are a couple days into the New Year, hopefully you have had a few moments to slow down and take a breather after all the holiday festivities! I’m finally taking a break to sit, write, and think about all the things that this new year is going to bring… the chart topper being Baby Vander Schaaf coming in just a few short weeks!! I think its safe to say that this is going to be a GREAT year- despite the upcoming sleepless nights and countless other warnings of ‘New Parenthood’, most of the advice we have received has been more along the lines of, “the best thing you’ll ever experience.” Sounds like a good plan for 2013 to me!
We had a blast for our New Years celebration with a few close friends of ours- we went to Torii, a Japanese Teppanyaki restaurant with Jon and Katie to end the year with a bang- highly recommended for a fun evening out! Teppanyaki (for those who don’t know) is the style of cooking where they use an iron griddle to cook your meal right in front of you! If you’re lucky, you’ll even get a chef who will flip the food into your mouth as he cooks. I’m happy to say, you don’t eat your whole meal via the chef tossing it to you- otherwise I would have starved. I only caught 1 out of 4 flips!! Ouch. The group even got persuaded to try sake bombs for the first time! I was fine with my iced tea
After dinner, we drove around a while looking for an open frozen yogurt place. We tried >;;>;;3<;;<;; different froyo places before abandoning our quest for the sweet treat- no place was open!! It seems no one but us thinks that frozen yogurt is necessary on New Year’s Eve!? Sad Panda.
Frozen Yogurt IS going to happen for me and Baby Judah. And soon.
Anyways, fast forward to New Year’s Day, I was able to coax the secret family recipe for Olie Bollen from a dear family friend of ours- which I promptly set to preparing so that we could bring it to a few families who work with Joey on the dairy. Every year, they bring us tamales on Christmas Eve, and we reciprocate by bringing OlieBollen on New Years! Its a sweet deal.
This recipe is absolutely incredible.. it helps that I have mastered the skill of yeast doughs now, too. I made one batch of apple, and one plain for the families on New Years- they turned out awesome! Last year I made them too big and the insides didn’t get cooked all the way. Totes embarrassing. I’m happy to say that this year was a redeeming year for me in the OlieBollen department!
In fact, it was such a great recipe that I made ANOTHER batch this morning to take over to Joey’s family- they just got back from a family vacation to Hawaii late last night and totally missed out on all the fresh Oliebollen! If you’re Dutch, you know that is pretty much like missing Christmas. (The fam went to hawaii to celebrate my in-laws’ 30th anniversary! We were so bummed to stay home, but we decided to be safe and not fly over the ocean this late in the pregnancy)
So we got OlieBollen TWO days in a row. 2013, I love you.
Now, time for a Green Monster and maybe froyo for dinner?
By the way, HAPPY anniversary to K and Curtis! Today marks the third year of marriage for them- they are truly meant for each other and I’m praying that 2013 brings their family yet another year of God’s richest blessings!
***EDITED TO ADD***
Here is the Oliebollen recipe! I got permission to share this with you all, and hope you love it! I know we did.
recipe from Ann Jean Vander Veen
2 packages yeast (4 1/2 teaspoons)
1/2 cup warm water
1 tsp sugar
1 cup sugar
3 TBSP melted butter
3 cups warm milk
6-7 cups flour
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt
3 cups chopped apples, OR 2 cups raisins, OR leave dough plain (choose which flavor you’d like)
Mix together the yeast, warm water, and sugar in a small bowl until the yeast activates and rises. Set aside.
While the yeast is activating, beat together in a separate bowl the eggs, sugar, and melted butter. Once mixed, add in the warm milk and yeast mixture and stir ’til combined.
Then add: 6-7 cups flour (one at a time) stirring until completely mixed in with each cup. Also add the cinnamon & salt. (and the apples/raisins, if desired.)
Mix until combined, then let rise for 3-4 hours. My mom taught me a good trick for a prime ‘yeast-rising’ environment- it has worked for me every single time. Set your oven to preheat to the very lowest setting (my lowest setting is 170 degrees.) Once it has reached 170, turn OFF the oven, let a little of the heat escape, and set your covered bowl of dough inside the lukewarm oven for the duration of time it needs to rise. **You do not need to continually RE-preheat the oven to stay warm!**
Once the dough has risen, heat up vegetable oil in a deep saucepan (or deep fryer) to 350 degrees- once heated, drop by tablespoon into hot oil, turn when browned on one side, and remove and drain on paper towels. It is important to keep the size of the balls smaller- this allows the insides to get cooked all the way.
Roll fried dough in a mixture of cinnamon sugar, and eat!