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Oct 16, 2000 06:43 PM

Starving Lithuanian

  • g

I'm a born and raised in Marquette Park Lithuanian. I moved to Kentucky several years ago and I haven't had anything good to eat since. Does anyone know who will ship: Lithuanian sausage, bacon buns, rye bread, minced ham, Vienna Hot Dogs, Hot Dog buns with Poppy seeds. I love Kentucky, but they don't know anything about these things and I'm wasting away to nothing. I have converted several "rednecks" into enjoying kugelis on special occasions, but stuffing my own sausage casing is something I haven't mastered yet.

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  1. There is a Silver Bell bakery in New York but am uncertain if they would ship the lovely dark bread. Would you share the kugelis recipe with us?

    11 Replies
    1. re: Allan Evans

      Those of us who make kugelis are very particular about certain things and the ingredients are not exact.

      First, I don't know how to make it with less than five pound of potatoes. They have to be the white baking potatoes (firmer texture, less moisture). You need someone who can grate very quickly because the potatoes will begin to turn brown in a hurry. As your designated grater is busy, fry about one pound of bacon (I like the thick sliced) and a couple of large onions. Fry the bacon first until crispy and add the onions. Do not throw out the drippings, that's the best part.

      After the potatoes are grated, drain out as much of the liquid as possible and stir in the bacon and onions. Add a couple of eggs and one small can of condensed unsweetened milk. The more eggs you add, the firmer your kugelis will be so it's a matter of taste, I like mine not quite so firm. Add salt and pepper to taste.

      Now the trick is, you need glass loaf pans. Teflon pans will not give you that beautiful crust. Grease the pans with Crisco. That's right, I said Lard. I buy one small can every holiday season and only use it to grease my kugelis pans.

      Pour in the batter and bake at about 350 - 400 until you see the lovely crust.

      It's great with your turkey dinner and for leftovers, you can slice it and microware or fry in butter and serve with sour cream.

      1. re: Geri

        Lard is lard. Crisco is vegetable shortening. Not the same. Recipe sounds great though.

        1. re: rjka
          Clifford Abrams

          Agreed. But have you ever tried to get real, fresh lard--as opposed to the hydrogenated stuff sold in bricks? Might as well be Crisco. Anyone know a source in Chicagoland?

          1. re: Clifford Abrams

            I live in LA now, and the little Mexican markets out here have real lard.
            I miss Chicago food alot... luckily, I can make most Lithuanian food myself. However, there was this minced chicken thing (restuffed into the leg) they sold at one of the delis... anyone know what I'm talking about?

        2. re: Geri
          Rachel Perlow

          I thought the name sounded familiar. Except for the bacon and the condensed milk it sounds like a standard jewish style potato kugel. Anyone had both who can confirm or deny?

          Does sound like a good recipe - I'd probably use schmaltz (rendered chicken fat) instead of the bacon drippings and crisco!

          1. re: Rachel Perlow

            The difference is mainly in the fat (obviously the Jews didn't use bacon, lard or milk). The authentic grease was goose fat, but here it became chicken fat. How wonderful to get the traditional Lithuanian version. Thanks ever!

          2. re: Geri

            Grating the potatoes is time consuming and doesn't remove enough of the water from the potatoes....My grandmother was born and raised in well as my mother who didn't arrive in the U.S. 'till long after the war...
            They didn't grate the potatoes..that doesn't remove enough water, plus you have to rush to avoid brown discoloration...Instead, they used a powerful juicer..which removes nearly all the liquid neatly and leaves you with a fabulous, finely grated, non-watery potato filling...In addition, they always used 3 lbs. red and 5 or so lbs. of Idaho white potatoes...
            It was/is always cooked in a speckled roasting pan...greased with butter...heavily..the richness it provides is unbeatable...of course you have to add the remaining Some people add farina ..ACK!!!Don't do that!!! Great kugelis isn't easy to slice... If you make it correctly, ...It should be a heavy-thick-pudding texture that is soft, but far from mushy...slightly firm...If you can slice it hot and have it retain a perfect square shape while transferring to the plate with the haven't done it correctly..Don't knock the juicer till you try it... Removing moisture, grating in 1/2 the time..not too shabby...
            Yes, in Lithuania they grated the potatoes..but any good cook can appreciate a new long as you don't sacrifice the authenticity of the taste...
            Sincerely, Roz

            1. re: Roz

              hello,i just wanted to know if you could email this recipe to my email address if it ok.that recipe sound good.hope i could make it.i wanted to know how you make it for two people because i'am only one that eat that here.thank you very much i been trying to look for this recipe but i could not find it.i am so dum i never thought about looking online.thank.

            2. re: Geri

              toss in an egg yolk or two in the grated potatoes to keep them from browning.

              1. re: Geri

                My late father in law's recipe for Kugelis is legendary among all remaining relatives. First, start off with 10 lbs russet potatoes. Grate into large container, add/stir in crushed vitamin C to prevent the natural browning/oxidation of the potatoes, as you grate. Meanwhile, brown 1 lb bacon/diced. Save grease, add 2 sticks butter and let melt. After potatoes are grated, put in cheesecloth and squeeze out much but not all water. Let water stand in separate bowl for at least 10 minutes. Then pour off the water and keep the starch at the bottom. Add 8 large eggs, 1 large can EVAPORATED MILK, NOT sweetened condensed milk, and 2 tsp salt. Mix well, add bacon/grease/butter mixture and add to potatoes, and mix well. Pour into greased 9or10" x 13"x 2" heavy-walled/heavy duty/(cast iron is best) pan. Bake at 350 for 70-75 minutes. Check with toothpick in center for doneness.

              2. re: Allan Evans

                In looking for the silver bell bakery, I came across
                your plea. We too cherish this bread that we got in Kingston NY, but found unavailable in Raleigh NC.

                There is hope however because we found their web site:

       The Web site is still under
                construction, but there is a phone number at the site.

                Bon Apetite!

              3. r
                Rachel Perlow

                I remember seeing something on Food Network where they toured the Vienna Hot Dog factory, but I can't find it listed on their site. However, Vienna Beef has a website, here's their FAQ page (, which includes an 800 number to find the dogs.

                I also did a quick search for Lithuanian Food Mail Order, here's a couple websites for you to check out (there were a lot more recipe sites than mail order sites, but you can do your own search for recipes):


                Below is a link to the "Food Finds" resource list, there's a sausage maker listed in the Chicago show, maybe they'll have what you want if the other links above don't.

                Good Luck!


                1. a
                  Alex Silbajoris


                  Sounds like you need to go to a huge international store called Jungle Jim's on Rt. 4 in Fairfield, OH, on the north side of Cincinnati.

                  I'm first-generation Lithuanian in Columbus. We're starting to get some more Russian delis, but we've been going to Jewish delis for years for the breads, etc. We also have Thurns, and excellent German sausage maker here.

                  Where in KY are you?

                  - A

                  1. I miss the stuff from Lugan-Land also. Am up here in the frigid wastelands of north-central Wisconsin. (You might wish to see my reply to dan regarding food generally around here--his submission was 10/8 or 10/9 on the midwest board.) You may recall a Lithuanian butcher shop called A-J Meats--used to be on 69th & Artesian. They are now located (with same name, I think) in Mt. Greenwood area on corner of 99th & Central Park. I don't know if they will ship stuff, but when I am in town, I stock up on fresh, homemade Lugan sausage, good creamery butter, even sometimes some frozen Kaldunai (but the ones my wife makes are superior). I take a cooler into town and load it with ice. Also, you can try a huge Polish deli operation on Archer Avenue called Bobeks (pretty far west--near Central?) They have a sausage called "fresh Polish" (as opposed to smoked Polish), but it tastes identical to Lithuanian sausage, if you ask me. They also carry dark Lithuanian rye bread from Baltic Bakery, fresh saurkraut in a vat, good, big, dill pickles, creamery butter, etc., etc. Also have attached little restaurant with huge groaning-board lunch (& dinner?) buffet. (Soup under $1 extra--mushroom excellent.)

                    I'm old enough to recall having eaten at Palanga's and Ruta's on Western Avenue; also Tulpe and Ramune on 69th St.; also Neringa on Talman when Lithuanians owned it. I miss that stuff and have had to resort to making my own cold beet soup, hot beet soup, saurkraut soup, meat and mushroom dumplings, and kugelis.

                    Sorry, as I say, I do not know about anyone shipping and I just go out of my way to bring stuff back after a visit.

                    Bon Appetit. --Bruce

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Bruce


                      their website says they can ship certain items.

                    2. I grew up on Baltic Bakery's Lithuanian rye with butter and GRAPE jam. Gotta be grape.

                      I saw on a wrapper that they will ship it.

                      Baltic Bakery
                      4627 S Hermitage Ave
                      Chicago, IL 60609
                      (773) 523-1510