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Paczki in Philly


Andrew Fenton
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Hey Andrew:

Right off the Allegheny exit of I-95 North is the Krakus Market at 3150 Richmond Street. They have an extensive selection of Eastern European groceries, a good butcher, and great frozen pierogies in about a dozen varieties handmade by little Polish ladies. I don't know much about their baked goods, but it's the only place I can think of that might have what you're looking for. If they don't have it, perhaps they can point you in the right direction.

Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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OK, I finally got around to heading over to the cultural center (where's that "embarrassed" emoticon?) The super-nice lady there tipped me off to two places in the great Northeast: Marian's Bakery (2615 E. Allegheny) and the Baltic Bakery (around the corner). Both are near the intersection of Allegheny and Richmond.

Anyway, I'm going to try dropping by tomorrow on my way back from Perth Amboy...

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Serendipity.

Was listening to NPR's morning show while returning from a Saturday Morning breakfast's worth of scrapple and eggs at the Melrose Diner. Someone from Wisconsin was spinning a wonderful description of Paczki. Polish donuts served just before Lent. A way for polish housewives to use up their eggs and butter - forbidden during the fast. She mentioned a couple of places to pick them up, but they were in Wisconsin and probably too far a drive from Philadelphia.

Then I happened upon this thread and Andrew's research. I immediately headed to Port Richmond. Marian's was out of Paczki but would have more Sunday morning. Fortunately, the Baltic Bakery, a block down and across the street, still had a trayfull left.

Baltic-PaczkiShelf.jpg

Mixed, prune, cream and apricot. I went for the apricot. Paczki, as baked in Port Richmond at least, has a much firmer texture than the jelly donuts they resemble. Best of all, if the apricot paczki is representative, the fillings have a much truer, less sweet flavor.

While there, a couple of guy's were delivering that afternoon's supply of chrusciki, very delicate fried dough cookies.

Baltic-Chrusciki.jpg

Too much good stuff here. Also picked up half a sesame rolled cake and a sweet dough cheese babka.

Photos from HollyEats.com, reprinted with permission of . . . me!

Above photo copyright notice reprinted with the implied permission of Fat Guy

Holly Moore

"I eat, therefore I am."

HollyEats.Com

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Aw, see, I shoulda gone to Baltic! We went to Marian's this morning and picked up a half dozen paczkis. There wasn't a terrific selection-- just raspberry and custard (sacrilege!) and they were... okay. Not great. The jelly was good, high quality and not too sweet, but the dough wasn't as eggy or tender as I remember them being.

But now that I've seen your report, maybe I'll make a trip to the Baltic Bakery on Tuesday... For research. Yeah, that's the ticket!

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So. fromthe pix, I'm assuming these are some kind of deep fried jelly donut that 's glazed??? 

Or with powdered or granulated sugar, but that's basically right. Good ones have good-quality jelly and a dough that has more eggs (and is consequently a little richer) than a typical jelly donut.

The other deal with paczki (it's pronounced poonch-key) is that they're one of those once-a-year treats, which always makes things taste better, IMO: I don't eat jelly donuts, but when I lived in Michigan (they're EVERYWHERE in SE MI around this time of year) I got addicted to paczki.

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