Family Traditions: Paczki Recipe for Fat Thursday

When I was a child my family lived all over the place and it was difficult to travel to be together. I still have fond memories of watching the Braves play while sitting on my grand father’s lap, and of the entire family making spaghetti sauce( a story for another day).  As an adults, We made the choice to live here in Ohio so we could be near family. With that, we now have many family traditions and I thought maybe sharing them with you would inspire more memories being made. So here’s all about our Paczki making tradition.

What are Paczki?

Paczki are basically a polish donut. These donuts are rich and delicious with their powder sugar coating! In stores these are filled with jelly but I’m telling you that the homemade ones are so much tastier and if you ask anyone in our family they will tell you those aren’t real Paczki! How on earth do you say  Paczki  ?PUUNCH-kee, PUUNSH-kee, PUNCH-kee or PAWNCH-kee, depending on who you ask it will sound a little different.

When and Why We make Paczki

In Poland, they are made to be eaten on Fat Thursday but, we make ours on the weekend before Ash Wednesday. Traditional paczki were made at this time to use up all of the eggs, sugar, and lard, since consumption of these was prohibited during Lent. We mostly make them because its a tradition that we want to keep alive, we love to honor our family’s tradition, and it’s a great excuse to eat them morning, noon, and night. 🙂

How do I make paczki?

I have included our family recipe below. Shh don’t tell.. but the actual paper recipe I have was missing half the info so I added the steps and things we do, whats great is you can completely include you children in every step except the frying part! We spend all day making wait for it 4-6 batches!!!! Ok it wasn’t all day but it was about 6 hours including rise time.

 

Print Recipe
Fat Thursday Paczkis
This is a Traditional Polish Paczki recipe. Passed down in our family as we use it to create memories and fill our bellies before Ash Wednesday.
Course Dessert
Skill Level easy, kids can help
Prep Time 1-2 hours
Cook Time 3-5 minutes
Servings
dozen
Ingredients
yeast growth
Course Dessert
Skill Level easy, kids can help
Prep Time 1-2 hours
Cook Time 3-5 minutes
Servings
dozen
Ingredients
yeast growth
Instructions
  1. Dissolve yeast in 1/4 cups warm water (110-120*) and 1/2 tsp sugar
  2. Mix dry ingredients. Heat butter and milk to 110-120* add egg yolks and vanilla. Add to dry ingredients and mix well. Add yeast.
  3. Let rise until it has doubled in size. Cut into quarters, roll out one quarter at a time. Using a cup dipped in flour, cut dough into circles. Place between the folds of a towel and let rise again until doubled in size.
  4. Melt lard in a heavy pan (high edge) until hot. To test tempiture lightly sprinkle water into fat, if it sizzles then lard is hot.
  5. Drop dough circle into lard letting them brown lightly on oneside before flipping. Remove and place on cooling racks with paper towels below to collect excess lard.
  6. Before completely cooled put in ziploc or paper bag with a few spoonfuls of sugar and shake to coat.
  7. Store in ziploc bag or container. Or do what we do and enjoy them right away!
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