Known by many names, meaning ribbons or dried twigs, Chruściki, Chrusty, Faworki, Angel Wings, whatever name they go by, these little powdered sugar treats appear en masse the last week of karnawał, just before Lent. Trays piled high with Faworki and Pączki fill the supermarkets and little shops for Tłusty czwartek or Fat Thursday. Faworki are also popular at all kinds of family meal celebrations, Easter, Christmas, and weddings.
They are so popular that in areas of the US with large populations from Central Europe; bakeries insist that customers place their Christmas and Easter orders for Faworki in advance. Like many Polish recipes, the pastry is traditionally fried in lard. You can, of course, use other oils for frying; there will be a slight difference in flavor.
Even though they’re rolled in powdered sugar, the plain, rich dough, is only lightly sweet. While it might not be traiditonal, I think it benefits from the additon of lemon and/or orange zest; it just adds a bit of brightness. Some cooks will knead or roll and re-roll the dough until it blisters. Being a lazy sort, I didn’t, but it still blistered upon frying. By all standards, this probaly makes a small batch, only 48 Faworki. You can easily double or triple if you’re feeding a crowd.
What do you call them, Chruściki, Chrusty Faworki, Angel Wings?
Crisp and lightly sweet
- 2 cups flour
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3 eggs yolks
- 3-5 tablespoons heavy cream (or sour cream)
- 1 tablespoon spirits (I used Soplica, but any whiskey or rum will do)
- 1/2 teaspon vanilla
- 1 teaspoon citrus zest (optional)
- lard, for frying
- powdered sugar, for dusting
- Combine flour, sugar, and salt
- In a seperate bowl, combine the egg yolks, 3 tablespoons cream, spirits, vanilla, and zest if you’re using it
- Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir until the dough comes together, use a little more cream if necessary
- Roll out as thin as possible
- Cut into 1 x4 inch strips, cutting a slit in the middle of each strip
- Pul one end through the slit, to create a twisted appearance
- Heat lard to 350 F
- Fry in batches, turning to cook both sides, until golden brown
- Drain on paper towels
- Roll in powdered sugar
You can freeze the leftover egg whites to save them for a recipe that only uses egg whites.