Fattigman (Norwegian Cookies)

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Fattigman (pronounced “futty-mun”) is a deep-fried Norwegian cookie that my sister made sometimes when I was a kid and that was also served after the Sunday school Christmas program. Fattigman means “poor man’s cookies” or “poor man’s donuts.”


– 6 egg yolks
– 1/3 cup sugar
– 1/2 cup cream
– 1 tablespoon brandy (or 1 teaspoon brandy extract)
– 1 teaspoon cardamom (or nutmeg; my mother often substituted nutmeg in recipes that called for cardamom)
– 1/4 teaspoon salt
– 2 to 3 cups flour

Beat egg yolks and sugar on high speed with an electric mixer for five minutes. Stir in cream, brandy, and cardamom. Mix in enough flour to make a stiff dough. Roll dough very thin and cut into two-inch by two-inch pieces. Cut a slit in the middle and pull one of the points through the slit. Deep-fry until golden brown. When cool, sprinkle with powdered sugar. I put powdered sugar in a plastic container with a cover, add some fattigman and shake gently to coat them.

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