For the second day in a row, I got a reprieve from that back-breaking shoveling – yeah for that, BUT my sidewalks and driveway are now icy and treacherous. Note to self: do not shovel when it is “snaining” (a snow and freezing rain combo) because the snow on the cement ends up with a glaze that resembles the shiny icing on a paczek.
So, what the heck is a paczek you might ask (unless of course you live here in Michigan, or, are a long-time follower of this blog); and, you might also be wondering, how does one pronounce this word anyway?
First things first.
If you have never had one of these Polish treats, a paczek is not just your regular jelly donut. It’s more like a jelly donut on steroids, because it is a heavier dough with a more ooey and gooey filling. Each one can be between 500 and 1,000 calories and 80 fat grams. Yes, that is true – yikes!
Paczeks (or paczki which is plural) are typically topped with a glaze or powdered sugar. Since Detroiters love their coney dogs, last year someone at American Coney Island came up with the idea to split a jelly-filled paczki down the middle, stuff it with a wiener, and top it off with the traditional coney dog fixin’s like chili, mustard and onions. That hybrid treat is back this year and people were scooping these 1,000-calorie wonders up at $5.00 apiece.
Here’s a primer on how to pronounce paczek and paczki, and, just so you know, most people refer to them as paczki (plural) as they don’t just stop at one! Paczek is pronounced “Poancheck” and paczki is pronounced “Poanchkee”. Now that you’ve got that pronunciation down pat, you’ll want to use your computer’s spellcheck feature if you’re ever writing about them.
We’re a lot tamer than New Orleans on Fat Tuesday, but we do have fun with our paczki parades, fun runs, and even paczki bakery crawls leading up to and including Fat Tuesday. As part of paczki pandemonium, just picture crowds lining up around the block at the crack of dawn today at New Palace Bakery in Hamtramck to pick up some paczki while they’re still warm.
In most workplaces, there’s always some kind soul who deems it is his or her responsibility to gift the entire office with these delectable donuts.
I didn’t have a paczki today, but instead indulged in my own sinful ooey-gooey, sugar-rush treat. If you grew up in the 60s, not only were you part of the culture of tie dye and big bellbottoms, hippies, flower power and VW buses, but you ate Fluffernutters. It was like a peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwich, only you swapped the jelly for marshmallow cream, and, it was a treat that was the best of both worlds, a mixture of salty and sweet. This sandwich even had its own jingle, a/k/a “The Fluffernutter Song” … http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O6gljDcLrvQ&feature=related
Nowadays, I find it almost sickening sweet, but it is my annual Fat Tuesday indulgence anyway.
The big dilemma now is those folks who plan to give up sweets for Lent, but won’t be able to enjoy their Valentine’s Day goodies. Instead of nibbling on nougats or truffles, they’ll be staring longingly at that festive, heart-shaped box for the next forty days, and, please don’t leave it unattended, since chocolate is not good for our furry friends.
On Valentine’s Day eve, I’m sharing this fun factoid with you: “in 2018, people will spend 44% more on their pets than their humans, but you should not be surprised, since 66% of pets have their own Facebook page” … now that made me smile.
I hope you enjoyed your indulgences today.
[Images from Twitter and American Coney Island]