Hello, y’all! I ended up making the most DELICIOUS baked donuts for Fat Tuesday… as in a Tuesday that occurred nearly a month ago. I planned on posting this journey on Thursday of that week, but then snowpacalypse came and I lost power, got it back, lost water, got it back, and them stared out the window wondering when the bottled up fears and anxiety I had would dissipate. My eyebrow stopped twitching this weekend. No joke.
SO- what are Paczki? They are polish donuts that are often purchased by many-a-Metro Detroiters in a delightfully loud box on Fat Tuesday. These are a Polish tradition, so people often visit Hamtramck to purchase “legit” ones. We lived next to a Polish family growing up, so Paczki would magically appear on my dad’s windsheild each Fat Tuesday. There was a gallon ziplock bag filled with several individually wrapped packzi. I would request the lemon… in case that query was going to keep you up at night. The cut one in the picture below is a lemon paczki. LOOK AT IT. LOOK. So. Good.
I have not been in Michigan for Fat Tuesday since 2013. Sad fact- I had to check my LinkedIn profile to see when it was because it has been so long. I wasn’t logging donuts on my LinkedIn profile, but I was an adjunct professor and remembered the timeframe.
I feel like this post is going to have a lot of asides. Buckle up, y’all!
I have had a donut on most Fat Tuesdays to eat a delish piece of fried dough in solidarity with my Michigander friends and family. It was usually not lemon because options are limited. And this year wasn’t lemon because I did not want to make lemon curd. Therefore, this year was raspberry jalapeno.
I baked these, though there are plenty of recipes where you can fry them. It was my first time making a yeast dough for donuts. I always make cake donuts in the oven. The yeast dough required more advanced planning since the dough had to rise a few times.
When I filled the donuts I finally used this cool jelly filling tip I purchased a while back. At first I cut slits in the paczki and then filled them. I found it was easier (and more fun) to stab a hole in the donut with the jelly filling tip and fill them that way.
Finally, I decided to go all out and make a box for the paczki. It was as close as I could get to the the legit ones in Michigan.
I hope you enjoyed this post! I would have liked to share it sooner, but having donuts to emotionally eat when we got hit with water and power issues seemed fortuitous. I knew y’all would read it when I was ready to rock and roll again.