Oliebollen are a Dutch dessert.
They are bite-size doughballs that usually have fruit in them such as pieces of fresh apple and / or raisins. The balls are deep-fried in oil or lard, and sprinkled with sugar. They are particularly popular at New Year.
Oliebollen first were probably made on whatever day bread was being made. You’d maybe make up a bit extra bread dough while you were at it, then make these for treats out of the extra bread dough.
By the 1600s, there were actual recipes for Oliebollen that were separate from leftover bread dough.
A recipe from a Dutch cookbook called “De Vertandige Kock”, 1669, had you make a dough from wheat flour, and add raisins softened first in water, chopped fresh apple, almonds, cinnamon, white ginger, cloves, melted butter, yeast, and milk, till you have formed a very thick batter. You allowed this batter to rise, then formed and fried the balls.
“Oliebollen” means literally “oil balls.”