2 1/4 teaspoons of active dry yeast

1 1/2 cups warm water (110 to 115 degrees F)

1/2 cup sugar

1 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

1 cup evaporated milk

7 cups of plain flour

1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg

1/4 cup of shortening (I use Crisco)

vegetable oil for deep frying

confectioner's sugar for dusting (rolling in, depending on taste)

Put the warm water into a large bowl, then sprinkle in the yeast and a couple of teaspoons of the sugar and stir until thoroughly dissolved. Let proof for 10 minutes.  Add the rest of the sugar, salt, eggs and evaporated milk. Gradually stir in 4 cups of the flour and the nutmeg and beat with a wooden spoon until smooth and thoroughly blended.  Beat in the shortening, then add the remaining flour, about 1/3 cup at a time, beating it with a spoon until it becomes too stiff to stir, then working in the rest with our hands.  Place in a greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap or bowl lid and refrigerate overnight.

Roll the dough out onto a floured board to a thickness of 1/8 inch, then cut it into rectangles about 2 1/2 inches by 3 1/2 inches with a sharp knife.  Heat the oil in a deep fryer to 360 degree F.  Fry the biegnets about 3 or 4 minutes per bath.  Turn them over in the oil with tongs once of twice to get them evenly brown, since the rise to the surface of the oil as soon as they begin to puff out.  Drain each batch, place on a platter lined with several layers of paper towels, and keep warm in a 200 degree oven until they're all done.