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Want to make paczki at home? Here's how.

If you've ever wanted to take on the challenge of making homemade paczki - and you have a whole day to do it - here's what you need to get started.

TOLEDO, Ohio — Fat Tuesday is upon us and you know what that means: paczki!

There are a plethora of donut shops and bakeries in northwest Ohio, making the best paczki money can buy, but have you ever wanted to take a spin in the old mixer and make that perfect Polish pastry yourself?

If you're up for the challenge, here are three recipes - original, gluten-free and vegan - to get you started.

ORIGINAL

WHAT YOU'LL NEED

  • 1 package of active dry yeast
  • 3/4 cup warm milk
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter (softened)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 tablespoon brandy
  • Pinch of salt salt
  • 2 1/2 - 3 cups flour 
  • Oil for frying (Canola oil works best)
  • 1/2 cup (or more) confectioner's sugar
  •  1 cup jam (whatever flavor your heart desires)
  • Dutch oven
  • Candy thermometer
  • Piping bags

Note: Recipe adapted from food blogger, The Spruce Eats. You can find the original recipe here.

PUTTING IT TOGETHER

Add yeast to the warm milk, mix together and put to the side for later.

In a stand mixer, mix together softened butter and sugar, until nice and creamy.

Next, add in the egg, egg yolk, brandy and salt until combined.

Once those ingredients are incorporated, start adding in the flour, milk and yeast, going back and forth between the flour and yeast/milk mixture. 

Keep mixing until smooth.

Spray a bowl with non-stick spray and dump in your dough. Cover and let proof for an hour or more, until your dough has doubled in size.

After your first proof, punch the dough down, cover and let proof again for about 45 minutes.

Lightly flour a clean work surface and roll out your dough until it is about a half-inch thick. Using a cookie cutter or glass, cut out your circles for the pastry. You should get about a dozen. 

Cover with a damp cloth and proof - yes again - for about 30 minutes.

In a dutch oven, heat oil until it gets to be about 350 degrees (a candy thermometer is your best friend for maintaining temperature).

Place paczki in the oil, heating for about two to three minutes on each side until golden brown.

Move to a cooling rack to let the oil drain.

Once cool enough to handle, but still warm, use a piping bag to inject your pastry with your jelly of choice!

Sprinkle liberally with sugar and enjoy.

GLUTEN-FREE

WHAT YOU'LL NEED

  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick salted butter, melted
  • 1 3/4 cup warm milk
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 2 packages of active dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup brandy 
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 4 1/2 cups gluten-free flour blend (with xanthan gum)
  • Oil for frying
  • Confectioner's sugar 
  • Your favorite jelly or jam
  • Dutch oven
  • Candy thermometer

Note: This recipe was adapted from Better Batter. You can find the original by clicking here.

PUTTING IT TOGETHER 

Combine sugar, salt, butter, milk, and eggs and mix until smooth.

Add in yeast and sit until dissolved. 

Once the yeast has completely dissolved, stir in vanilla and brandy.

Pour your mixture into your electric stand mixer and slowly add 1 1/2 cup flour, stirring on low with your paddle attachment until just combined.

Cover and proof for at least an hour and until your dough nearly doubles in size.

Add the rest of your flour and mix on high for roughly 5 minutes until it gets thick and is sticky.

Flour a clean work surface and sprinkle even more flour on top of your dough. Roll out until it is about a half-inch thick and cut into circles using a cookie cutter or round glass.

Brush off flour and sprinkle water on the donuts. Cover and let proof again for half an hour. 

Heat oil in a dutch oven to 350 degrees. It should be about an inch or two deep. 

Fry your dough, just a few at a time,

Place donuts on a rack with paper towels or a pan underneath to drain excess oil. 

Using a piping bag, inject with your favorite jelly. Cover in as much powdered sugar as you'd like.

Enjoy!

VEGAN

WHAT YOU'LL NEED

  • 1 cup warm soy milk
  • 1/3 cup vegan butter, melted
  • 4 cups flour 
  • 2 tablespoons fresh yeast
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp brandy
  • Canola oil
  • 1/2 cup Confectioner's sugar
  • 1 cup of your favorite jam or jelly
  • Dutch oven
  • Candy thermometer

Note: This recipe was adapted from the food blogger Colorful Kitchen Tales. You can find the original recipe by clicking here.

PUTTING IT TOGETHER

Combine the warm milk and melted butter in a stand mixer.

Add in the yeast, mix, and add the rest of your ingredients and beat for about seven minutes until your dough gets soft.

Cover and proof for 30 minutes and knead on a lightly floured surface.

Proof again for 30 minutes.

Roll out dough on a floured surface until it is about a half-inch thick. Cut into circles using a cookie cutter or a round glass.

Cover and proof again for another 30 minutes.

Heat oil until it reaches 350 degrees, you want at least two inches of oil in your Dutch oven.

Cook the dough for about two or three minutes on each side until golden brown.

Place them on a rack with a towel or tray underneath to let the oil drain.

Once they are cool enough to handle, but still warm, fill with jelly using a piping bag.

Cover liberally in confectioner's sugar.

Eat and enjoy! Paczki is best on the day it was made. 

Add in the yeast and add everything else and knead it for 6-8 minutes or until it slips the bowl and gets soft.

Let it rest for 30 minutes with a clean dish towel over the bowl and knead it again.

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