Hot!Fat Tuesday - Paczki

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ChiTownDiner
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2007/02/09 16:42:34 (permalink)

Fat Tuesday - Paczki

Fat Tuesday is coming up in less than two weeks - February 20th. Paczki or Punch Key or Pooch Key are an annual treat at my home and workplace. All local bakeries in the Western Chicago Suburbs offer them as well as the chain supermarkets on this day only. I have had them all and find the best (of the establishments I've tried) to be from Ingram's Busy Bee Bakery in Downer's Grove, Illinois. They feature 23 varieties of which I have ordered the following:

1. Apricot
2. Bavarian Creme w/ Powder
3. Bavarian Creme / Chocolate Icing
4. Chocolate Custard
5. Lemon
6. Pineapple
7. Poppyseed - my favorite!
8. Raspberry
9. Apple
10. Blueberry
11. Cherry
12. Peach
13. Fresh Strawberry
14. Cheese & Blueberry
15. Cheese & Cherry
16. Cheese & Chocolate Chip
17. Cheese & Raspberry

Not Ordered
1. Buttercream
2. Chocolate Buttercream
3. Fudge
4. Prune
5. Cheese
6. Cheese & Strawberry

Busy Bee stopped accepting orders on the Thursday before last year and the Chicago Tribune reported that they had sold over 10,000 that day. At 6am (opening), the line snakes around the corner but pre-pays - we move to the head of the line! Yee Haw!

For the uninitiated, a Paczki is similar to a solid donut, bismark, pershing etc. Some are filled by the injection method, some ar sliced and layered with filling.

Anybody else partake in this custom and if so, any flavors missing from the list?
#1

52 Replies Related Threads

    Ashphalt
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2007/02/09 17:34:03 (permalink)
    I'd never heard of these until a few years ago. We don't have a big Polish concentration in Eastern New England. But the BigY Supermarket chain out of the Springfield area (which is the Polish center) opened nearby and offers about 6 or 8 flavors this time of year.

    I'm tempted, but then I wonder if it's worth trying a supermarket version.
    #2
    sizz
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2007/02/09 17:48:52 (permalink)
    Pooooooooooooooooooooonchki Day yes! thanks for the reminder

    My kids don't know much about being Polish but two things that they do know is (one) we don't eat meat at our Christmas eve dinner and (two) Poooooochki Day a day we can eat as many doughnuts as we want.
    Here in San Jose CA our Paczki believe it or not comes from the many Vietnamese bakeries we have in our community.
    As the world turns, in Vietnam before the war, bakeries there were influenced by the French Colonialists. Today these bakers are working there trade in the French traditional flare to the benefit of San Jose....... Zadowolony Paczków dzieñ..ChiTownDiner

    #3
    tkitna
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2007/02/09 23:30:03 (permalink)
    Our local Krogers has had a large selection of Paczki's doughnuts for the last month or so and i've indulged. I bought a few boxes of the powdered bavarian creme and the powdered apple. Good doughnuts, but I was getting ignorant in my intake and had to cut back.
    #4
    ChiTownDiner
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2007/02/10 09:31:34 (permalink)
    fpczyz - Great pics...I'll raise one up (of many) on the 20th!
    #5
    6star
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2007/02/10 10:00:35 (permalink)
    Our local Wally World SuperCenter has Powdered Bavarian Creme and Raspberry. (I got some last night.)
    #6
    shortchef
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2007/02/10 10:48:16 (permalink)
    Riesbeck's market here in Wintersville makes their own. Lots of flavors. But you have to buy a whole box of eight. To me, that can be a couple of servings. So I have managed to leave them alone until now, when I saw that picture....
    #7
    Trishkaidekaphobia
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2007/02/11 07:19:47 (permalink)
    Thanks fpczyz for the gorgeous photo. Yum, yum, yummy!

    When my mother was alive, she made paczki two or three times a year. I was her assistant, i.e. "the sugarer". Fron the time I was 7 or 8 until my early thirties, it was my duty to roll the freshly fried paczki in granulated sugar and then stack them on plates/in containers.

    Here in Southern Ontario (that's in Canada for the uninitiated) paczki show up on Mardi Gras (Fat Tuesday) in Zehr's and Loblaw's supermarkets. They're o.k. They have all sorts of interesting fillings like strawberry, raspberry, lemon, vanillla cream. Polish and German bakeries also have traditional (better) paczki all year round.

    The traditional filling IS prune. Or sometimes rosehip jam, as made by Blikle Café in Warsaw. They are covered either in a glaze or granulated sugar. Icing sugar is a North American invention.

    P.S. Paczki CAN be frozen in tupperware containers. It messes with the sugar, but you can just re-roll them when thawed if you like. So buying a whole box need not be a problem!
    #8
    ChiTownDiner
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2007/02/20 09:20:20 (permalink)
    fpczyz - Opened the day with a raspberry and cheese closely followed by a poppyseed. Lots of choices still to go...amazing how many folks were in the bakery at 5:15am this morning. Nineteen counter folks working and each had a customer!
    #9
    ChiTownDiner
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2007/02/20 09:22:42 (permalink)
    Also - they just added a 24th flavor - Peanut Butter and Jelly!
    #10
    sizz
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2007/02/20 12:29:03 (permalink)
    good morning and Happy Poooooooooooooch Key DayI just got back from 3 different doughnut shops .............. it's 8:AM and all I could find were 9 raspberry filled and 2 custard ...................... now I have to wait for the 3 grand-kids to show up and we'll sit down and enjoy this wonderful Polish tradition.... Frank
    #11
    tmiles
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2007/02/20 13:29:31 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Ashphalt

    I'd never heard of these until a few years ago. We don't have a big Polish concentration in Eastern New England. But the BigY Supermarket chain out of the Springfield area (which is the Polish center) opened nearby and offers about 6 or 8 flavors this time of year.

    I'm tempted, but then I wonder if it's worth trying a supermarket version.


    I've tried them twice, but not this year, or ever again, as they were STALE. I got my money back the second time (with an attitude).
    Big Y has, IMO, gone way down hill. Their bakery is a shadow of its' former self with about a third of the cases filled with decorations, rather than baked goods. They have, IMO, entered an ever tightening spin, and from the outside looking in, I doubt that they will recover. They have higher prices, stale baked goods, and service that is not as good as the competition.
    #12
    Big Ugly Mich
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2007/02/20 13:44:10 (permalink)
    It's ELECTION day here in Wisconsin. I bet they did that to guarantee a low turnout.
    #13
    pcdiva
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2007/02/20 22:38:29 (permalink)
    Since I'm back in middle GA, I didn't get my paczki or any King cake for Mardi Gras. But I'm not Catholic, so I am enjoying all of the fish specials regardless of the day of the week.
    #14
    lennonlover2005
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2007/02/23 03:04:49 (permalink)
    We have the Biggest Paczki madness go on in the Hamtramck area of Detroit.It has a large Polish population. The Polish bakeries there open at 5 am and the line starts forming at 3 am. The paczki are warm, fresh and heavenly. Just about all of Michigan celebrates this day! (Fat Tuesday)

    The best bet is to get them from local bakeries. The chain places like Kroger's make horrid ones!

    To our Canadian friends...make the trip next time to Hamtramck and then take some back with you....(within customs guidelines of course!)
    #15
    MikeS.
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2007/02/25 01:09:52 (permalink)
    I found some of these donuts at our local grocery bakery, unfortunately they were per-boxed 6 to a box. I would have liked to try different flavors but because of this I bought a custard filled.

    They were heavily coated in powdered sugar but once I scrapped all that I could off they were very tasty. I wish they carried them year round.

    I couldn't tell that they were anything more special then a good quality well filled donut.

    MikeS.
    #16
    dfb
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2008/01/16 16:33:33 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by sizz
    Here in San Jose CA our Paczki believe it or not comes from the many Vietnamese bakeries we have in our community.


    If you don't mind sharing, please let us know Vietnamese bakeries sell paczki, and which bakery you think make the best ones. I'm in the San Jose area and would like to get some. I miss paczki day.
    #17
    ChiTownDiner
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2008/01/16 17:10:30 (permalink)
    I just got me order together...ah, another year, another 6 dozen! Three weeks from yesterday!
    #18
    ayersian
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2008/01/16 17:14:31 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Ashphalt

    I'd never heard of these until a few years ago. We don't have a big Polish concentration in Eastern New England. But the BigY Supermarket chain out of the Springfield area (which is the Polish center) opened nearby and offers about 6 or 8 flavors this time of year.

    I'm tempted, but then I wonder if it's worth trying a supermarket version.


    I wish that we had seen this this time last year to warn "No! Whatever you do...don't be lured in by the Big Y paczki!" Perhaps bakery-made versions are better, but as for the Big Y variety, they are not worth the calories ingested!
    #19
    Lindseyup67
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2008/01/16 21:42:42 (permalink)
    Unless I am missing something after trying them.....these are basically no different than jelly donuts.....?????
    #20
    pigface
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2008/01/16 21:58:30 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Lindseyup67

    Unless I am missing something after trying them.....these are basically no different than jelly donuts.....?????

    Yes you need a real Polish bakery, Not the corner Krogers, or Valumart
    Yea ... they're Jelly or custard donuts, just think extra egg yokes & fat ... Limit to one per year, last year I had a custard, so this year it has to be PRUNE
    #21
    ann peeples
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2008/01/16 22:16:16 (permalink)
    Cant wait!!National Bakery makes thousands of them every year-my favorite IS prune!!
    #22
    tmiles
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2008/01/17 12:59:02 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Lindseyup67

    Unless I am missing something after trying them.....these are basically no different than jelly donuts.....?????

    The ones that BigY supermarkets sell here in Massachusetts, are IMO, just that. They come in a nice box from "your polish baker" and "recipient of Poland's highest civilian honor" but the only addr that shows on the box is BigY's. They are sold year around, although the box does mention Fat Tuesday. Maybe it is because I have not had "real" ones, but I am not impressed.
    #23
    pcdiva
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2008/01/19 02:12:27 (permalink)
    Since I am a Southern girl with Irish and Scottish heritage, my favorite part of the day was trying to figure out how you got the pronunciation of "Poonch-key" from the group of letters (various spellings) listed on the boxes. But Gaelic is twisty turny in "English" too. And my boss would always spring for them, so we knew coffee break would be yummy. No one here in GA to my knowledge makes them. (commercially) and Dunkin Donuts or Krispy Kreme just wouldn't be the same. Enjoy one for me, okay!
    #24
    sizz
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2008/01/22 23:05:58 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by pcdiva

    Since I am a Southern girl with Irish and Scottish heritage, my favorite part of the day was trying to figure out how you got the pronunciation of "Poonch-key" from the group of letters (various spellings) listed on the boxes. But Gaelic is twisty turny in "English" too. And my boss would always spring for them, so we knew coffee break would be yummy. No one here in GA to my knowledge makes them. (commercially) and Dunkin Donuts or Krispy Kreme just wouldn't be the same. Enjoy one for me, okay!

    #25
    ayersian
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2008/01/23 19:48:52 (permalink)
    tmiles and Lindsay: Now this is the stuff of RF nightmares --



    Beware the Big Y paczki, for they are terrible... Chris
    #26
    dfb
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2008/01/27 18:55:19 (permalink)
    Hi Sizz,

    Where do you get your paczki fix in San Jose? I'm in the San Jose area and would like to get some. Please let me know.

    #27
    Russ Jackson
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2008/01/27 19:09:12 (permalink)
    My favorite are the prune ones. Tough to find but try them if you get a chance.....Russ
    #28
    sizz
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2008/01/27 22:32:30 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by dfb

    Hi Sizz,

    Where do you get your paczki fix in San Jose? I'm in the San Jose area and would like to get some. Please let me know.



    here you go............. Two of the best ........... in the San Jose area
    Donut Wheel, Cupertino http://www.jatbar.com/reviews/Cupertino/Donut_Wheel.asp

    http://www.jatbar.com/reviews/San_Jose/Happy_Donuts.asp
    also if your new to San Jose check out this website........ http://www.jatbar.com/
    enough good joints in the Bay area to eat at till the day you die............ Frank
    #29
    syrupy08
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    RE: Fat Tuesday - Paczki 2008/02/05 13:37:54 (permalink)
    In the news last night in Detroit they had coverage of Paczki day in Hamtramack, (which is known for it's large Polish population even though there are less Poles their than there used to be.) They mentioned a bar the was serving a Jagerpaczki, which is a Paczki filled with Jagermeister. I guess the next step will be to fill the pastry with Nightquill and called it a day
    #30
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