Prior to lent is the festival, carnival or mardi gras season. Girls Gone Wild is a fairly recent component of this tradition. Paczki have been around much longer.
The carnival season was not invented just to get all your good sinning in prior to lent. It was almost a forced party, as people had to use up the fruit, sugar and lard around the house before the season of fasting began.
Cook decadent food. Share with friends and neighbors. Repeat.
Enter the Paczkek. (Plural, pazki. But to most English speakers it's pazki in singular and paczkis in plural. Potyato potahto.
The Polish people are largely Catholics. Remember Pope John Paul II? He's the former Karol Józef Wojtyła, of Krakow. How many Polaks does it take to become pope? Turns out just one.
Cincinnati has some of those Polish Catholics. And they like their Paczki.
So, they're just jelly doughnuts, you say.
Maybe so, but they're more special. The fruit filling is actually contains fruit, and the dough is more like yellow cake. It's all pretty yummy.
Below is what one looks like as you eat it on the way to the bakery to get more Paczki!
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