Step1Choose your favorite funnel cake recipe. You may have inherited an original Pennsylvania German recipe or choose one from a website. Remember that you want a batter that is thick but not so thick that it comes out of the funnel spout in blobs.
Step2Assemble your equipment and layer a plate with paper towels. Once you start cooking your cake, be ready to turn it and then drain it so it doesn't get too greasy.
Step3Mix your batter according to your favorite funnel cake recipe and pour it into your pitcher.
Step4Pour 1 inch of vegetable oil into a 10-inch cast-iron skillet and heat it to 375 degrees F. This type of heavy skillet works well because it heats up quickly and evenly, but it may be easier to maintain a constant temperature in an electric frying pan.
Step5Cook one cake at a time because it will fill the whole pan. Hold the pitcher's spout about 8 inches away from the oil and pour about 3/4 cup of the batter into the hot oil in a scribble pattern, criss-crossing back and forth. This may take some practice, and the amount you pour will depend on the size of your skillet.
Step6Fry the funnel cake until golden brown, and then turn it with the tongs to brown on the other side. It should take about 30 seconds on each side.
Step7Remove the fried cake from the pan and place it on paper towels to drain. You can also pat some of the grease off with paper towels. Let it cool slightly, dust the cake with powdered sugar and serve it warm.
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