Last year, we wandered into our favorite donut place in the area to pick up lemon drops, chocolate drops and assorted other donuts. In the “bakery case” part–I beheld a marvel–a tray of apricot cheese paczki. (pronounced sort of like poonch-key)
I had heard, of course, of these over-sized delights described as “Polish Jelly Donuts” made for Fat Tuesday. I had even seen a few pathetic packages at various grocery stores. I had yet to try one.
But, that apricot cheese paczek (the singular of paczki) rocked my world. Once a year (mostly-there are rumors of bakeries that have them daily) paczki take over the minds, hearts and stomachs of people all over the country–particularly in the midwest or anywhere you find a large Polish community.
Spunky Dunker’s-our dealer-I mean the donut shop we purchase these delights from has a huge list of flavors–from the traditional prune or poppyseed to buttercream filled or cheese and fruit filled.
But, how to describe? Imagine a rich brioche dough-formed extra-large jelly donut style and deep fried. Then split and spread with large amounts of luscious fruit filling, reassembled, and then sprinkled liberally with powdered sugar, glaze or frosting. Some places pipe the filling in as with a jelly donut but many have to resort to the slice in half to fill and reassemble to get the optimal amount of filling inside.
We went Saturday–hoping to pick some up for Sunday so the children could enjoy them. We don’t have the children on Paczki Day this year. None were to be had except a Chocolate Bavarian. We placed our order which we could pick up the next morning. (oh and I had to taste test that single chocolate bavarian on the way home) We could see masses of women working to fill orders in the back. I imagine today is even busier.
When we picked them up Sunday, we realized the boxes were HEAVY. Each dozen weighed close to 10 lbs. Right. Healthy.Ok, so not healthy but YUMMY. I promise.