Fried cookies are drop cookies or filled cookies that are cooked in oil. Sometimes referred to as simply “fried dough,” these cookies are often dusted with powdered sugar after being cooked. They are best when served immediately.
Since electric home ovens were not commonplace until the twentieth century, preparing cookies in a frying pan was the norm for centuries. In that sense, little fried cakes led the way in cookie development. Over the ages, krusczyki (a Polish fried pastry), zeppole (an Italian fried pastry), rosettes (a thin, molded, and fried crispy cookie, hailing from Scandinavia) and fattigmann (a Norwegian fried dough cookie) – all traditional treats cooked in oil – paved the way for cookies to eventually become an everyday treat.
These days, cookies that are fried are becoming increasingly popular. When fried in properly hot oil, dough absorbs only a tiny amount of fat. Favorite cookie recipes (like chocolate chip cookie dough or oatmeal cookie dough) are modified to be suitable for frying by adding a bit of liquid. The dough is rolled in batter and deep fried to create a rich and crispy treat. The biggest mistake made in modifying a recipe to be a fried cookie is in adding too much liquid, making the dough too moist. Thin dough oozes out of batter when deep fried. Modified cookie dough is best moistened just beyond the dry and crumbly texture.
When you’re finished frying cookies, remove the pan from the heat and cover it, allowing it to cool. Covering also prevents the kitchen air from further oil fume saturation.