Do you have a childhood dessert that you absolutely love? My favourite Polish dessert I grew up with is called Faworki or Chrusciki. This traditional sweet crisp pastry is made out of dough that has been shaped into thin twisted ribbons. These ribbons resemble angel wings and this is how this pastry got its English name. Once the Angel Wings pastry ribbons are formed you can then deep fry them and sprinkle them with powdered or icing sugar.
History of Angel Wings Pastry Dessert
Angel wings are present in several European cuisines such as Polish, Czech, Bulgarian, Croatian, French, German, Italian, Russian and many others. There are a variety of different names for this tasty pastry. People usually make these on Fat Thursday which is the last Thursday before Lent. Just make sure you don’t confuse the date with “Fat Tuesday/Pancake Tuesday” which is associated with Mardi Gras. Apparently, in some countries husbands give Angel Wings to their wives on Friday the 13th in order to avoid bad luck. Wow, that sounds like a great idea to me and more opportunities to eat these delicious pastries!
Over the years I’ve watched my mom make these awesome pastries and I wanted to share her recipe with my lovely readers. In order to give you a truly authentic experience, this past Fat Thursday I got together with my folks and we collaboratively made faworki together. I hope you give this recipe a try and enjoy it as much as I do.
- 4 cups of flour
- 12 egg yolks
- 4 tbsp thick sour cream
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 tbsp white vinegar, rum or spirytus
- 2 tbsp butter (at room temperature)
- Oil for frying
- 1 1/4 approx cup of icing sugar for sprinkling (including 1 tbsp of vanilla sugar)
2 full large platers of faworki
Sift flour through a sieve so it’s light and fluffy.
Make a circular space in the middle of the flour to put the butter, egg yolks, sour cream, salt and vinegar.
Then use a flat round fork if available to work all the ingredients in to form dough.
Once the dough is well worked with the knife you can then move to working it with your hands.
When the dough reaches the right consistency of a well-formed ball you need to whack it with a rolling pin. Yes, you heard me right, you need to whack it for approx 2-3 minutes. This ensures that some air goes into the dough and it will give the pastry its signature fluffiness. Have fun with it and take out some frustrations on the dough!!!
Now it’s time to portion the dough in smaller batches and roll it out on an even surface. You need to roll it out as thin as possible.
Cut the rolled out dough into 3-4 cm by 10-12 cm length pieces. Make a 4-5 cm cut in the middle of each piece so you can easily fold it in.
Angel Wings Pastry (Faworki, Chrusciki) Folding Technique
Fold each dough to form a ribbon. See the below pictures for the exact technique.
Prepare two plates and cover them with paper towels in order to absorb the excess oil from the fried pastries.
Angel Wings Pastry Frying Technique
Fill a good size frying pan with 2-3 inches oil. We used grapeseed oil because it has a high burning tolerance and it makes the pastry lighter. Bring the oil to sizzle. You can test it with a piece of raw potato to see if it’s frying fast enough. Now it’s time to fry the dough in patches. Put as many pieces in the frying pan as you can fit comfortably.
Fry the pastry on one side for about 5 minutes and once it looks slightly browned flip it to the other side. Make sure you don’t burn it. Then fry it for one more minute on the other side.
After frying a few batches of the dough you might notice a lot of foam forming in the frying pan. You will need to skim off a bit of the foam and then add a bit more oil so the dough doesn’t burn.
Angel Wings Pastry Finishing Touches
Once all pastries are fried let them rest on the plate with paper towels to absorb excess oil. Then sprinkle both sides with powdered sugar and voila you’re done.
Now you’re ready to enjoy your freshly made and delicious Angel Wings (Faworki). I hope you’ll love them as much as I do.
I’m curious to know what you think of this recipe and whether you have your own version of these pastries.