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Posted on Mon, Mar 7, 2011 : 10:39 a.m.

Paczki Day 2011 - made locally, or imported from Hamtramck

By Edward Vielmetti


Baker Tyrone Hatch lifts a tray of paczki from the fryer as Dom Bakeries owner Fea Chov looks on in this February 2010 photo.

Melanie Maxwell |

Tuesday is Paczki Day, the local celebration of pre-Lenten excess based around the consumption of fat, jelly-filled Polish pastries.

My 2010 Paczki Day guide was pretty good, and most of it is still true, so I won't repeat myself too much. Here's some notes on what is new this year in paczki production and consumption. The Arborwiki paczki page is another good source of detail.

Imported from Hamtramck

Wise Guys in Ann Arbor, a tiny store on Packard at Woodlawn better known for its late night weekend Chicago dogs, is importing paczki from their favorite bakery in Hamtramck. They will be bringing in traditional flavors, including the elusive prune (plum) paczki, not something that your typical donut-maker has in stock.

Made in Ann Arbor, after 18 years of saying "no"

Zingerman's Bakehouse is making paczki this year, after 18 years of telling their customers that they don't have them. They will have 100 for sale at the store; you missed the pre-order period, but file this away for next year. Fillings include the traditional prune as well as a rose hip jam.

Zingerman's shares a secret to paczki dough — a little Spiritus, the clear Polish grain alcohol, is mixed into the dough.

Field trip to Hamtramck

The Polish Muslims are a band who have been playing Paczki Day celebrations for the last 28 years. They will be playing at the New Dodge Bar at 10:30 a.m., at Whiskey in a Jar at 2:30 p.m., and at Post 10 at 6:30 p.m., all in Hamtramck.

The Hamtramck Review has a complete run-down of events in that city, located about 45 minutes east of Ann Arbor in an enclave of Detroit.

Here are the Polish Muslims, in an undated clip from the short-lived early 1980s afternoon show Good Afternoon Detroit on WXYZ. News anchor John Kelly introduces the group, saying that "the group polkas to a beat of a different accordion."

Edward Vielmetti celebrates religious feast days for



Tue, Mar 8, 2011 : 3:17 p.m.

Got mine from Wise Guys this morning. Very, very tasty!

Edward Vielmetti

Tue, Mar 8, 2011 : 2:27 p.m.

MLive has a handy checklist for paczki story coverage here <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a> naming the 5 essential paczki tropes: paczki are unhealthy, bakers are busy, how to pronounce the word and the singular of it that no one ever uses, the high cost of pastries, and &quot;cutting edge digital coverage&quot;.


Tue, Mar 8, 2011 : 1:22 p.m.

Not even a mention of DEXTER BAKERY???? A few years ago the Ann Arbor News article started with them! They aren't imported from elsewhere. They haven't been telling folks to go elsewhere for 18 years...

Edward Vielmetti

Tue, Mar 8, 2011 : 2:24 p.m.

Thanks @dextermom - I just added the Dexter Bakery to the Paczki page on Arborwiki <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a> so that whoever writes this story next time can be suitably encyclopedic.

Kim Kachadoorian

Tue, Mar 8, 2011 : 2:47 a.m.

I am with @glacialerratic on this the Paczki's from Copernicus - last year I think she told me that she sold about 10,000 of them - she has the prune flavor as well. Her place is in South Main Market or as I call it - my own neighborhood &quot;World Cuisine Market&quot;


Mon, Mar 7, 2011 : 11:46 p.m.

Copernicus European Delicatessen, South Main Market--tomorrow it's a madhouse from 6 am. And it's the real deal.


Mon, Mar 7, 2011 : 11:44 p.m.

Just a simple prune one with powdered sugar on top is the pinnacle of packzi delight! If you are interested in having the traditional sort, then the Polish Market on Jos Campau is perfect. They are kind of a secret.. you can just walk right past those other incredibly LONG lines and stroll into the market and maybe be behind 3 or 4 people. They have every fruit flavor imaginable. If you like the more modern sort, then the New Martha Washington Bakery is the place to go. Try their red and white Polish paczki (strawberry jelly and custard together), or their red, white, and blue (strawberry, custard, and blueberry). Absolutely to die for! Just be ready to wait in line!


Mon, Mar 7, 2011 : 9:14 p.m.

I haven't met a paczki I haven't enjoyed. I don't play favorites.


Mon, Mar 7, 2011 : 8:40 p.m.

I'm a traditionalist. I prefer the plum paczki, too.


Mon, Mar 7, 2011 : 7:12 p.m.

Rose Paczki is the way to go.


Mon, Mar 7, 2011 : 4:32 p.m.

Prune is the best! To everyone who has never tasted a Prune Paczki, the filling is nearly identical to Apple Butter in both flavor and texture. The term &quot;Plum Butter&quot; is a better descriptor than Prune. Naturally, if you don't like Apple Butter you won't like Prune Paczki - regardless of their name.


Tue, Mar 8, 2011 : 1:27 p.m.

Prune was the traditional because as you cleaned out the cupboards and began the Lent fast dried fruit was the only sweet you had left. And using it up pre-Lent really was giving up something.