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Paczki or Fastnachts?

Does anyone know where we can find paczki or fastnachts on Tuesday? My husband is PA Dutch, so prefers fastnachts, but I like paczki better. Either would be great though. Thanks.

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  1. I truly hope someone comes through re. pazcki. I've never found anything around here that comes within range of a Detroit or Chicago paczki.

    1. the baltic deli in south boston has paczki

        1. re: beverly1977

          Had a Paczki at Coffee Time recently it was my first. Was not that tasty though. The whipped cream was fresh, but the pastry part was boring. Not even as good as a decent donut. Some of the other items looked promising and I want to check them out.

          1. The stop & shop in brookline (harvard ave) often has pączki at this time of year--they're from a local bakery, but I unfortunately don't remember which. (I've never tried them, since I tend to find that pączki are basically stale within 5 minutes of leaving the oil, so I'm not sure how well they hold up in a box. But they do look reasonably authentic!)

            6 Replies
            1. re: another_adam

              Come on!
              Paczki from Stop and Shop suck! They get all soggy the very first day they are delivered.
              Do yourself a favor and visit the Polish food stores in South Boston and Dorchester for good authentic Paczki.

              1. re: janzy

                Why yes, I believe this is what the OP wanted, a list of places to find them...Could you recommend some good ones

              2. re: another_adam

                Maybe I'm missing something but I tried paczki twice in Krakow and didn't think they were nearly as good as a mom & pop jelly donut. Perhaps I expected too much of a donut flavor.

                1. re: Joanie

                  I find that a paczki's dough tends to be pretty bland, almost like white bread.

                  1. re: Prav

                    That was my experience. Bland bready with not a great texture. Think the OP is right that they need to be eaten right out of the fryer.

                    1. re: StriperGuy

                      Yes, I think the problem is that the dough is relatively dry to start with and usually uses butter as the shortening, so they dry out quickly and they're just not very shelf-stable. So, they don't hold up well next to some other doughnut options, which often have partially hydrogenated oils or even stabilizers of various sorts--hence the need to get them super-fresh, and the reason why they probably don't last well by the time they make it to a supermarket. They're definitely delicious and tender right out of the fryer, though!

                      Incidentally, (since I think of them as an exclusively homemade item anyway) paczki are also quite easy to make, and the leftover dough can rest for a day in the fridge if you don't want to fry them all at once.

              3. WIth a family name like Szczepanski, we knew our paczki! Living my first 30 yrs in the Detroit area, I always headed to Hamtramck (Polish hub of Detroit) for these pre-Lent delectables. Lines out the door from the minute the bakeries opened. People would buys dozens to take to work. Polish or not, Catholic or not!

                The paczkis never had a moment to sit around and get stale. Several would be wolfed down before making it back to the car.

                The dough melted in your mouth and the filling was wonderful enough to remind you why you were giving up sweets for Lent.

                So, I understand some of the puzzlement about why people think they are so great. Without the "real" thing and rapid turnover, maybe they do taste meh. I never had the chance to find out.

                3 Replies
                1. re: three of us

                  There is no doubt in my mind that if done well they are tasty. Coffee Time in Salem is not at all a Polish bakery. So who knows if even right out of the fryer their Paczki's would be good? Boston does not have anywhere near the Polish community that Detroit or Chicago have.

                  I will say, Modern Pastry does an amazing pre-lent pastry for the feast of St. Joseph, called appropriately Zeppoli di san Giuseppe. Amazing Chou pastry donut like delights filled with pastry cream, whipped cream, or cherry jam. I usually go for pastry cream AND cherry jam. When those are right out of the fryer they are heavenly.

                  1. re: StriperGuy

                    I second the Zeppoli di san Giuseppe recommendation. I first sampled one while living near Federal Hill in Providence, and now can't wait until my local Italian bakery (D'Amici's in Lynn) whips up a batch each year.

                    D'Amici's Bakery
                    500 Eastern Ave, Lynn, MA

                    1. re: drshaws

                      Both Modern and Arthur's in Medford have zeppoli now through 3/19.

                2. My folks seem to get them at the local Big Y, and they are pretty good! But the baked goods at the Polish delis in Andrew Square are the best places to get them locally.

                  1. Thanks everyone! I agree that paczki can be bland, but we used to get very good ones when we lived in Madison, WI and also in Cleveland. I hadn't seen them around here, so now I have places to look.

                    Looks like we're out of luck on the fastnachts, which is what I expected. I think they get stale even faster than paczki, but that's probably because my MIL usually has to ship them to us!

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: MrsCheese

                      Call the Baltic Deli in South Boston. Best polish market around.

                      Baltic Deli & Cafe
                      632 Dorchester Ave, Boston, MA 02127

                      1. re: MrsCheese

                        MrsCheese: did you ever get kringle when you were in WI? I have a friend who sends some every year and I would KILL for kringle.

                        You are right about the fastnachts. They are at their optimum when they are eaten fresh (and preferably hot), maybe with a little schmear of apple butter or some honey.

                        1. re: PattiCakes

                          I never had kringle, but it looks good. I love anything in the Danish genre, especially if it involves cheese (can you tell by my name). Do kringles have cheese?

                          As it turns out, the MIL sent the fastnachts from PA this year, and somehow they stayed fresh! Best I've ever had. She even sent the authentic Turkey Golden Table Syrup to go with them, so we had them with butter and syrup. Yum!

                          1. re: MrsCheese

                            Kringles come with cheese, but also with a whole variety of other stuff. Just google "kringle". They seem to be a Wisconsin thing.

                            Ooooh. Turkey Golden Table Syrup & butter? You WERE livin' large!

                      2. I saw them at Shaw's in Saugus yesterday.

                        1. Hub and I just had paczki at DJ's Market on Boston St in Dorchester on Saturday. They were really good, light and airy. It was my first paczki experience, but my husband is Polish & from Detroit so I tracked these babies down to give him a thrill. The market makes them year-round -- there's an older Polish fella that works back in the deli and fries them up. He works Monday through Saturday; Sunday is his only day off and the only day this place doesn't have them. They come in one flavor -- raspberry -- and are covered in sugar. Check out the photo. This place also has tons of great Polish foodstuffs -- we brought home some pierogies stuffed with farmers' cheese & potato. I highly recommend visiting this place as it definitely has a ton of character and the staff was very sweet.

                          ps - Don't be put off if the younger Polish guys behind the deli counter get confused if you ask for "paczki" -- they weren't familiar with the term when I mentioned it, but then the older Polish dude stepped in and said he'd have a fresh batch in 20 minutes.

                          6 Replies
                            1. re: three of us

                              Not sure if they have what you are looking for but a great Polish place in Stoughton is the Podhale Deli. They have homemade Polish foods and groceries. The woman who runs it is very nice.


                              It is in a random building and was a bit hard to find at first. I've also been to the Polish restaurant in Dorchester mentioned above. That place is good too.

                              1. re: FenwayFoodie

                                I have been craving this Polish lunch meat called krakovska (not sure of spelling). I am going to call and see if they carry it at either of the delis mentioned. I'm also craving that wonderful, milk-based mushroom soup made from the strong -flavored, dried mushrooms that I can only buy at the Polish markets in Detroit. I'll have to see if these places carry them.


                                1. re: three of us

                                  I had a Polics friend who used to carry on her family tradition of making pierogi with mushrooms. She always used "special" mushrooms (OK, it wasn't in the 60's), but I was never sure what they were.

                                  1. re: three of us

                                    In Lynn at 145 Broad St. there is a Russian grocery store called Gastronome European Deli. They have a very large array of deli meats, (and other products, too.) I don't know about the mushrooms - I haven't noticed any there, but that doesn't mean they don't carry them.

                                    Gastronome European Deli
                                    145 Broad St, Lynn, MA

                                    1. re: threedogs

                                      Always good to have another place to try. This reminds me to also try the Russian market in Newton, behind Filene's Basement.