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Feb 21, 2009 12:56 PM

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.