Special equipment: a large electric fryer
In the bowl of an electric mixer, sprinkle the yeast over the warm water. Stir to dissolve. Add the sugar, salt, eggs and evaporated milk. Beat until blended. Add 2 cups of the flour by big spoonfuls. Beat until smooth. Add the shortening, and then beat in the remaining 1 1/2 cups flour. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 3 hours.
In a large electric fryer, preheat the oil to 360 degrees F.
Roll out the dough to a 1/8-inch thickness on a lightly floured work surface. Cut the dough into 2 1/2-inch squares.
In batches of 8, fry the squares in the hot oil until lightly browned on both sides, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain on paper towels. Sprinkle heavily with confectioners' sugar.
Adapted from "Home Cooking with Trisha Yearwood" by Trisha Yearwood © Clarkson Potter 2010. Provided courtesy of Trisha Yearwood. All rights reserved.