Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Elephant Ears

I grew up in and around Ottawa, Ontario Canada. It is a beautiful city and I have many MANY fond memories of living there. One of the biggest is going to Winterlude. If you're unfamiliar with Winterlude go ahead and click here and check it out... I'll wait... 

For a quick break down, Winterlude is a winter festival in Ottawa that takes place the first three weeks in February with attractions all over the city, the biggest being skating on the Rideau Canal. You bundle up, strap on your skates, and take a trip down the largest skating rink in the world while looking at snow sculptures and sipping on hot chocolate. 

When you're tired from skating you head over to a BeaverTails shack and get yourself a piping hot, fresh from the fryer, coated in cinnamon and sugar doughy treat. To me, nothing says winter more than sitting in a snow bank eating a BeaverTails pastry with my mitts on so my fingers don't freeze off!

Since we moved almost 8 years ago I haven't made it back for Winterlude. I know some year soon I will because I want my kids to experience it. In the mean time, I remembered that my grandma had a recipe for something very similar, which she called Elephant Ears! I dug around in the stack of cookbooks I have from her and found it today and got to work. My kids had their first yummy fried dough treat while watching the snow softly falling. Our kitchen might not have the caché of the world's largest skating rink, but at least they're getting a taste for one of my most beloved childhood memories (BTW, they LOVED them!). I can't wait to take them for a real BeaverTails pastries someday.

Elephant Ears

2.5 cups warm water (80-90˚F)
3 cups all-purpose white flour
3 cups whole wheat flour
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp dry active yeast

vegetable oil
butter, melted


1. Mix the flours together and set aside.
2. To the warm water add the sugar and yeast. Stir and cover, let sit for 10 minutes.
3. Add water/yeast mixture to the flour mixture and mix until it forms like bread dough (add more flour/water as necessary).
4. Take the dough out of the bowl and knead for about 5 minutes.
5. Put the dough back into the bowl and cover with a tea towel and let rise for 3 hours.
6. Take the dough out of the bowl and knead again for a few minutes and then shape into a log.
7. Cut the log into 1" slices and roll out with a rolling pin to between 1/4" and 1/2" thick.
8. Heat about an inch of oil in a deep frying pan to 375˚F.
9. Gently place a piece of rolled out dough into the oil. Fry until lightly golden brown flipping to cook both sides. This only take a minute or so.
10. Remove from the oil and place onto paper towels to drain.
11. Melt butter and brush over one side of the beaver tail. Place dough butter side down into a mixture of cinnamon and sugar to coat and enjoy!

For some other great toppings why not try Nutella and whipped cream, maple syrup or even garlic butter and shredded cheese!


  1. You are amazing! Love your recipes! I live in Ottawa and my son looooves Beaver Tails! Great to have a recipe we can try at home. Thanks!!