I was up at 2 a.m. today to get to the bakery by 3. Yes, THREE. It's Fat Tuesday and I offered to come in and help them get the Paczki's going. It was a round the clock adventure starting yesterday at the bakery but the shift they needed help with was the 3 a.m. shift (go figure).
Coffee in hand I stumbled into the bakery and could smell the sweet dough baking as soon as I opened my car door. yum....
OK- I had NEVER ever heard of a Paczki until I moved here, and frankly I don't really remember talk of them in college either. They are a Polish tradition and surpringly they are pronounced "PUNCH-KEY" not "Pachz-Key". why? who knows... It's like "Favre" I guess. lol
anyhow, they are pretty much a glorified jelly filled donut. The traditional way to make them is to deep fry them, and the true original ones apparently aren't very sweet. But, due to commercialization and grocery stores trying to make them more palatable, they became more donut and dessert like.
At my bakery, they are a little more 'healthy', because we don't deep fry them. Why not? Not because we are trying to save anyone calories or make a healthy alternative. no, it's because we don't have a deep fryer. So, we bake them = better for you = people delude themselves that they are eating a 'healthy paczki'. yeah, sure....
On the menu:Raspberry filled (covered in powdered sugar), Cream filled (dipped in chocolate), Lemon filled (iced w/ lemon icing), Custard filled (sugar glazed and re-baked)
Raspberry is the top seller and fav. I, however cant weigh in as I didn't eat a single one!! Yet another year goes by sans Paczki.