Recipe #1037  

Baked Paczki (Doughnuts)

Makes: about 20 doughnuts
Prep Time: 45 minutes
Proof Time: 45 to 60 minutes
Bake Time: 12 to 14 minutes

Paczki, pronounced POHNCH-key, are Polish doughnuts traditionally deep fried and eaten to celebrate Fat Tuesday (Mardi Gras). This flavorful baked version is prepared without the hassle of deep frying.

3-1/2 to 4 cups all-purpose flour
2 envelopes Fleischmann's® RapidRise Yeast
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
1/4 cup butter OR margarine
2 tablespoons Karo® Light Corn Syrup
1 tablespoon rum OR Spice Islands® Pure Vanilla Extract
2 egg yolks
1 egg

1/4 cup Karo® Light Corn Syrup
1/4 cup butter OR margarine, melted

Sugar, powdered sugar, fruit jelly, preserves, chocolate chips chocolate sauce, caramel sauce

Combine 2 cups flour, undissolved yeast, sugar and salt in a large mixer bowl. Heat milk, butter and corn syrup until very warm (120° to 130°F). Add to flour mixture with rum, egg yolks and egg; beat 1 minute at low speed. Increase speed to medium and beat 2 minutes. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough. Knead on a lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 3 to 4 minutes. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes.

Roll dough out on a lightly floured surface to 1/2-inch thickness. Use a 3-inch cookie or biscuit cutter, to cut out as many rounds as possible. Place rounds about 2 to 3 inches apart on parchment lined or lightly greased baking sheets. Re-roll and cut remaining dough. Cover and let rise in a warm, draft free place 45 minutes to 1 hour, until doubled in size.

Preheat oven to 375°F. For glaze, combine corn syrup and melted butter; set aside.

Bake 10 minutes. Brush glaze over packzi and continue baking for 2 to 4 minutes until light golden brown. If desired, brush again with any remaining glaze. Let cool slightly, then dust or roll in sugar or powdered sugar.

Paczki can be served plain, filled or even drizzled with your favorite chocolate or caramel dessert sauce. (Click here and here for sauce ideas.) For filling, see instructions below and fill paczki before rolling in sugar for less mess.

Fruit: Use a knife to cut a small slit in side of paczki. Use a small spoon (or pipe with pastry tip and bag) to insert a heaping teaspoonful of your favorite jelly or preserves into center of each doughnut. 
Chocolate: Use your finger to gently poke a small hole in side of paczki and insert 1 teaspoon chocolate chips into center of paczki while still warm.

VARIATION - Traditional Fried Paczki: 
Paczki can be deep fried instead of baked after rising. Heat at least 2 inches of oil in a deep fryer or deep pan to 350°F. Fry 3 to 4 paczki at a time (depending on pan size), about 2 minutes per side until deep golden brown. Remove from oil and drain on paper towels. Cool slightly, then roll in sugar or powdered sugar while still warm. (Fried paczki is not typically glazed, though glaze may be brushed on before rolling in sugar if desired.) For filling, see instructions above.