Happy 30th birthday to Tova Small…and thanks for throwing a rockin’ 80’s birthday party. But who knew that getting all dressed up and playing Nintendo would lead to frying dough! I thought Tova’s husband, Adam, was joking when he said he was going to make funnel cakes. I mean, are funnel cakes even from the 80’s? Either way, I was in! Adam bought a Carnival Funnel Cake kit from Bed Bath and Beyond a few weeks ago and he figured that his wife’s birthday party was the best time to break it out. You won’t ever see me objecting to frying something and I had to pull out my camera to take pictures along the way. We had way too much fun! Of course, heating up canola oil would later lead me to deep-frying a few other items, as I obviously enjoy doing, but for now, let’s focus on this funnel cake. The funnel cake kit is hilarious! It contains the original cake mix, an apple-cinnamon mix, pouring pitcher, metal frying ring, cooking tongs, and a sugar shaker. Everything you obviously need to make the perfect funnel cake…right?

Things got a little complicated when Adam didn’t have a thermometer. I have been there myself! It’s hard to gauge how hot the oil is and 350 degrees is really hot! So Adam mixed the batter and when we thought the oil was ready, we poured in the first batch. It turns out that the pouring process is a bit more complicated then we expected. First of all, the oil was not hot enough so the batter just filled with oil and never puffed up. Second, the pouring pitcher has a very wide spout and the batter was coming out very thick. What we were left with was an oily mess of semi-cooked funnel cake.  Somehow, we found someone who would eat the cake (ahem, Craig Weitzman) . He did not look so good when it was all over! His eyes were glazed and he was sluggish. Too much canola oil, I presume.

Say hi to Adam, everyone! Hi Adam!

With each batch we tried, the oil was getting hotter and hotter so we assumed we were getting closer to the 350 degree mark. The directions on the box say to circle the batter around the ring mold three times then criss-cross through the center to fill the hole. This method didn’t work out too well because the batter was getting too thick. Thanks to Craig’s wife, Ariella, we figured out that we needed to drop in less batter…and Ariella became the “pourer,” if that’s even a word. The funnel cakes began cooking evenly and were puffing up to perfection. Once they came out of the fryer, they were quickly sprinkled with powdered sugar and passed around to a room full of nostalgic children of the 80’s.

They may not be too pretty, but they tasted great! Sometimes it’s the ugly food that surprises us, right?

Once we were done frying funnel cakes, the search was on for other food items to fry! I wasn’t in my own kitchen so I didn’t know if we would find anything good, but Justin found chocolate donuts (double fried, yum!) and I found granola bars. Both were amazing! All in all, a great birthday party with good friends, good food, and lots of frying!

Just for fun, here’s what I wore to the party. Enjoy! My hair was insane.