I had such a great time yesterday, Tuesday,  taking the radio show on the road to the Family Fare store on Lake Michigan and Collindale, NW for Fat Tuesday.  It's tradition for us to broadcast there as hundreds of folks come to pick up the Paczki. 

It's also tradition to make Paczki on Fat Tuesday.  For hundreds of years the Polish have been celebrating the arrival of Lent by making Paczki.  The reason?  To use up all the lard, sugar, eggs and fruit in the house, because they were forbidden to be consumed due to Catholic fasting practices during Lent.   And, just in case you can't pronounce it, or pronounce incorrectly, it's 'poont-ski.'

We all know what they are, of course.  Delicious, jelly filled piece of dough shaped into a flattened sphere and deep-fried.  Stewed plum jam or prune is the traditional filling.  But there are so many others, including strawberry, Bavarian cream, blueberry, custard, cherry, apple, and possibly more.

At Family Fare we had a Paczki eating contest, too, between schools.  West Catholic, Sibley, and Westwood Middle competed for cash prizes of $300, $200 and $100 from Spartan Stores.  Congratulations to West Catholic for eating the fastest and winning the 1st prize of $300.  Westwood was second and Sibley was third.

What...you mean you haven't had enough, yet?  I'm sure Family Fare will have some left for today in case you need to "refill."  They usually make plenty since the Lake Michigan Drive store will sell over 4,000 by itself.

Happy eating!