Fastnachts, it’s a tradition

I’m a little late to post this, but better late than never, right!? Ash Wednesday was just a few days ago, Wednesday, March 1, which means that lent season began.  I can’t help but get into the spirit of lent. The day before Ash Wednesday is known in my area of the country as Fat Tuesday. It’s a Pennsylvania Dutch tradition to have fastnacht’s the day before Ash Wednesday. Why you may ask? Well let’s first begin with what lent even is.

Lent is modeled after Christ’s 40 day fast in the desert enduring the temptations from Satan. Sunday’s do not count during this season. The lent season ends on Good Friday. So does this mean that those who practice lent also fast? No way! But what is typically done, is individuals choose something that is valuable to them to give up – TV, beer, junk food, etc. It is this act of giving up some of our indulgences that help us be more attuned to the Lord’s voice, and to resemble in a sense the suffering that Christ went through. It helps us remember what exactly Christ did for us and that the joy of eternity is present through the sacrifices Christ made.

Alright, back to Fat Tuesday. Fat Tuesday began as a way for Pennsylvania Dutch housewives to use up all of the lard before the fast began. Fastnacht is a German word meaning “the night before the fast”. Hey, if there is a day dedicated to eating junk food, I am all in! Because, I love junk food :). It is absolutely my guilty pleasure. Thankfully I run…a lot!

This year for lent, as with the past several years, I decided to give up dessert. If you know me, this is an incredibly hard feat! The past several years I made it about a week then gave in. We’ll see how long I make it this year :). So far, so good, though! And you better believe I participated in Fat Tuesday. I did not get a Fastnacht, but I got a huge ice cream sundae with a brownie in it. I truly think the size of my sundae was sufficient to last me for at least a week :).

So, what have you given up for lent, if anything?

I will leave you with the easiest, quickest donut recipe. So, in case you  missed Fat Tuesday, you can easily whip up a batch of these!


  • 1 box cake mix (any flavor)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 1 package vanilla instant pudding mix
  • 1 cup water


  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream


  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Spray donut pan. If you don’t have a donut pan, use a muffin tin (although they won’t look like a donut, but they will be smaller in size and contained in the container).
  2. Mix in Kitchen Aid mixer with whisk attachment, or whisk by hand in large bowl: cake mix, large egg, vanilla pudding mix, water until well combined.
  3. Pour mixture into re-sealable Ziploc bag. Snip off edge of Ziploc bag. Squeeze batter out into donut pan, or into muffin tin until 1/2 full.
  4. Bake for 12-14 minutes or until the donuts spring back when you touch them. Let cool in pan for 5 minutes, before removing.
  5. While cooling, make the glaze. Whisk together the powdered sugar and heavy cream until well blended. Once donuts are cool, using a fork, dip the donuts into the glaze. If desired, flip the donut over so the entire donut is covered. Remove from glaze and set on wire rack with a sheet of parchment paper underneath (this will catch the glaze drips).
  6. Enjoy!




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