Tlusty czwartek. (the fat Thursday)
Each year people in Poland celebrate a so called “tlusty czwartek” – fat Thursday. The history of this day goes a few hundred years back to the pagans era (the era before christinaity came into central Europe).
In the Christian calendar, the “fat Thursday” is celebrated on the last Thursday before the big lent starts (the lent always starts 52 days before Easter). In Poland and a Christian part of Germany, people on this day are allowed to eat a lot of unhealthy food. 🙂
The history of faworki.
The two of the most popular dishes are doughnuts and faworki. Since I live in Poland I was always making and eating doughnuts (BtW, they are called paczki in Polish) but this year I have decided to make the faworki. And I have to say that this decision was a good one. 🙂
Although the name faworki is coming from a French word “faveur” which means slim ribbon, they are actually coming from Lithuania and Germany (and also Poland 🙂 ). The dough is made from flour, egg yolks or whole eggs. Also, a bit of either pork fat or margarine and a small amount of alcohol is added to make the dough sucking up less fat from frying. (I have added vodka 🙂 ). The faworki should be crunchy, the dough should be thin and full of air bubbles. They should be sprinkled with powdered sugar on top and eaten immediately 🙂
Besides Poland, faworki are also eaten in Slovakia (fánky), Hungary (fánkok), Chroatia, Denmark, Sweden, Ukraine, Belarus or Romania.interesting facts
Faworki, a very traditional Polish dessert. (Fánk, fánky)
- 400g of wheat flour
- Pinch of table salt
- 1 teaspoon of baking powder
- 1 whole egg
- 5 egg yolks
- 1 tablespoon of powdered sugar
- 6 tablespoons of soured cream
- 1 teaspoon of alcohol (vodka) or white vinegar
- For frying: 1kg of pork fat or 2L of vegetable oil
- Sift the flour into a bigger bowl, add the salt and the baking powder and mix well. Add the whole egg, the egg yolks and a tablespoon of powdered sugar into a second bowl, and mix with mixer until smooth and creamy. This should take around 8 minutes.
- Transfer the egg mixture into the flour and add the soured cream and the alcohol. Mix with a mixer or just stir well with a spoon until all the ingredients are well combined. Transfer the dough onto a flat surface and knead until smooth. Create a ball from the dough, wrap with foil and let it rest for 45 minutes in room temperature.
- Knead the rested dough for about 7 minutes and the roll out with a rolling pin. Then fold the dough in half and roll it again. Repeat this step at least 3 times.
- Split the dough into 4 equal parts and roll out each of them into a flat circle. The thinnest the circle, the better. Using a knife or a pizza cutter cut the circle into rectangles (2-3cm wide x 5-7cm long) and a make a small cut in the middle. Fold one end of the rectangle through the small cut in the middle and set aside.
- Heat up the pork fat or the oil in a deeper pot to 180°C. Fry the faworki until golden brown flipping them once after 30 seconds. NOTE: they will rise fast once you put them into the oil.
- Sprinkle the faworki with powdered sugar and enjoy while they still warm 🙂