Never heard of Paczki? I hadn’t either until a Zanesville grocery store started selling it a few years back. My father loves his sweets (I’ve seen him polish off an apple pie in 24 hours) so of course we tried some of these delicious treats. I’ve been hooked ever since. See wikipedia for more info.
So here comes another fact about me – I love to cook. It is so rewarding to me to take ingredients which alone are nothing and create something delicious (well most of the time it is). I love trying new recipes and searching through thrift store cookbooks. I’m smitten with Smitten Kitchen – her recipes and pictures are amazing and I love that she is honest about whether or not the end product actually tasted good.
So when I realized Fat Tuesday was coming up I thought to myself I wonder if they sell Paczki in Columbus. I’m sure they do, but instead I got the bright idea that I would just make my own. I scoured the internet for a recipe that didn’t include 20 egg yolks (holy heart attack!) or whiskey (don’t have any of that just lying around…unforunately! teehee) and finally found one that seemed perfect. I changed a few things that I thought would make it better. The result?
Oh they are light and fluffy and sugary and delicious. Well the second batch was anyhow. Thank goodness I changed the recipe because the way it instructed caused the Paczki to split in half while cooking leaving me with two half cooked halves. Not so pretty but, well, still tasty.
Since I did so much recipe searching, I found the best method of filling is to poke a hole in the side of Paczki after cooking and use a pastry tube to insert the jam (or custard) into the center. I don’t have a pastry tube so I innovated with a chopstick and sandwich baggie with a corner cut out of it.
Worked like a charm!
So I won’t make you wait any longer for this recipe. It is time consuming but well worth it. And people will think you are AMAZING when you tell them you made it yourself.
Oh and don’t use a hand mixer for this. It is worth the extra effort to get the stand mixer down from the top of the refrigerator or else you will fight the hand mixer the entire time and it will win.
- 1 1/2 cups milk
- 2 (1/4 ounce) packages dry active yeast
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup soft butter
- 3 egg yolks
- 1 whole egg
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 4 1/2 cups flour
- oil (for frying)
- confectioner’s sugar
- Scald milk and allow to cool to lukewarm, add yeast and stir.
- Beat sugar and butter until fluffy, add eggs, salt, & vanilla.
- Add flour and yeast-milk mix gradually, beating well.
- Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk.
- Roll out dough, on a floured surface, 3/4 inch thick.
- Cut out 1 1/2 inch circles.
- Let rise again for 1-1 1/2 hours until doubled in size.
- Heat oil to 375°F (medium heat).
- Fry, turning once, to a medium golden brown.
- Let cool. Poke hole in side (chopsticks work well!) and use pastry bag to fill with jam. Dust with confectioner’s sugar & enjoy!