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Polish Angel Wing Cookies Recipe [Chrusciki]

A traditional Polish snack made for Fat Thursday, this chrusciki recipe is light and crispy.  Make them in just 35 minutes for a tasty deep-fried snack!

What Are Chrusciki?

Chrusciki are traditional Polish cookies that are light and crispy. Made since Medieval times, these angel wing cookies were made for Tłusty Czwartek or Fat Thursday.

Catholics fasted during the season of Lent and only ate veg and fish. Tradition required the people to finish all the food ingredients that couldn’t be eaten during the Lenten period. So angel wings were made to finish up the lard, eggs, and butter.

Angel wings were called chrusty or chrusciki because they looked like dry twigs or brushwood. They were also called faworki because they looked like the ribbons that Medieval knights gave their ladies.

According to another legend, faworki were created by accident at the Fawor factory in Poznan. An apprentice baker accidentally dropped a piece of paczki dough into hot oil and it turned into a braid.

To avoid being caught, the frightened baker sprinkled it with sugar and served it. But it turned into a new delicacy. Faworki comes from the French word ‘faveur’ meaning grace or favor. They were originally heavy like donuts earlier but grew lighter and crisper as the centuries passed.

In Poland, chrusciki are popular at Carnival time. You’ll also find them served at Christmas or some Polish weddings. 

How To Prepare This Chrusciki Recipe

Step I – Prepare The Dough

Prepare the dough with flour, sour cream, egg yolks, salt, sugar, and alcohol/vinegar. Add air into the dough by forming it into a ball and throwing it on a flat surface for some time. See the video below for more info.

ingredients for the chrust recipe.
Gather the ingredients for the chrust recipe

Step II – Make The Chrusciki

Let the oil start heating up in a pan.

Oil heating in a pan.
Heat the oil

Now roll out the dough to ⅕” thickness. Then cut it into 1×3″ strips and slit them in the middle. Form the chruściki by pulling one end through the slit.

It looks difficult, but it’s really easy! (Watch my video, if you want more tips.)

Woman rolling dough.
Roll out the dough to 1/5th-inch thickness
Chrisciki dough.
Chrisciki dough rolled fine
Cut the dough into 1 by 3 inches.
Cut the dough into 1 by 3 inches
Polish chrusty ready for frying.
Pull one end of the chrusty through the other
The tray full of angel wing cookies.
Angel wing cookies lined on a parchment paper

Step III – Make The Chrusciki

Check if the oil is hot enough by throwing a small piece of dough into it. If it rises to the surface, the oil is ready for use.

Fry the chruściki till they turn golden brown on either side. Drain the excess oil using paper towels.

Fry the chusciki cookies in batches.
Fry the chusciki cookies in batches

If you want healthier angel wings, bake them. The baked chrusciki recipe is the same as this, except instead of frying, you bake them in the oven for about 10 minutes!

Chrullers baking in a oven.
Chrullers baking in a oven
Chusciki cookies frying and others draining on parchment
Chrusciki cookies frying while others are drained on parchment

You can see the difference in the baked and fried chrusciki in the tray here. The fried version are lighter, but the baked version are healthier.

Once the chrusty have cooled down, sprinkle them with icing sugar and serve!

Dusting the angel wing cookies with sugar..
Dust the angel wing cookies with sugar
Tray full of angel wings with sugar.
Polish angel wings taste perfect with sugar
Serve chrusciki warm or cold.
Serve chrusciki warm or cold

Tips For Making Angel Wing Cookies

  • Adding alcohol or vinegar to the dough will prevent it from absorbing too much fat during frying.
  • This chrust recipe is traditionally made for Fat Thursday, but you can make it at any time of the year! 
  • Chrusciki are not traditionally sweet. They get their sweetness from the sugar sprinkled on them. 
  • You can add a few spoons of powdered sugar to the dough if you want them sweet.
  • If you use lard instead of oil, it will taste more like the traditional faworki.
  • Other Polish dishes made for Tłusty Czwartek are rosette cookies and paczki.
  • You can lemon zest or vanilla essence to the cookies for a different flavor!
Chrusciki in a plate.
Chrusciki: A tradtional Fat Thursday Snack

Kruschiki Polish Cookies: Frequently Asked Questions

What Does Chrusciki Mean?

Chrusciki means brushwood or twig. It’s derived from the word chrust.

How To Pronounce Chrusciki? 

Chrusciki is pronounced hrrooss-chee-kee or hruss-chi-ki. 

Why Are Chrusciki Made on Tłusty Czwartek Or Fat Thursday?

Chrusty are made on Fat Thursday or Tłusty Czwartek to give households a chance to finish up all the household ingredients such as sugar, eggs or lard that can’t be eaten during the Lenten fasting period.

What Are The Other Names For Angel Wing Cookies?

These Polish angel wings are also called Kruschiki (Polish cookies), Chrusciki, Faworki, Chrullers, Angel Bows, Chrusty, or Christmas bow ties. 

What Are Chrusciki Called In Other Cultures?

In other cultures, chrusciki are known as:

  • Chruščy in Belarusian
  • Favorki in Bulgarian
  • Kroštule in Croatian
  • Boží milosti in Czech
  • Klejner in Danish
  • Oreillettes in French
  • Mutzenblätter in German
  • Diples in Greek
  • Forgácsfánk in Hungarian
  • Chiacchiere or Cenci in Italian
  • Zaķauši in Latvian
  • Zagarėliai in Lithuanian
  • Crostoli or orelha de gato in Portuguese
  • Minciunele in Romanian
  • Khvorost in Russian
  • Flancati in Slovenian
  • Verhuny in Ukrainian
  • Qush tili in Uzbek

How To Store The Chrusty?

Store the chrusty in an air-tight container for up to a week. Don’t dust the sugar on them till just before serving.  

Polish Angel Wing Cookies Recipe [Chrusciki]

Yield: 50

Polish Angel Wing Cookies Recipe (Chrusciki)

Polish Angel Wing Cookies Recipe (Chrusciki)

A traditional Polish snack made for Fat Thursday, this chrusciki recipe is light and crispy.  This tasty deep-fried snack is also called faworki or chullers.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of flour
  • 4 tbsps of sour cream
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 tbps of vinegar/vodka/distilled spirit
  • a pinch of salt and sugar
  • 4-6 cups of oil
  • icing sugar to sprinkle chruściki

Instructions

  1. Sift the flour and mix it with sour cream, egg yolks, salt, sugar, and alcohol/vinegar.
  2. Knead the dough until it is not sticky anymore.
  3. Now it's time to put some air into the dough. The simplest technique is to form it into a ball, then keep throwing it on the flat surface (see the video in the post) for about 5 minutes.
  4. Divide the dough into 2 or 3 pieces, then roll it out to about '' thickness.
  5. In the meantime, pour the oil onto the pan or wok and start heating up.
  6. Cut the dough into 1x3'' strips.
  7. Cut a slit in the middle of each strip.
  8. To form chruściki, pull one end through the slit. That will create a beautiful twisted appearance. Polish chrusty ready for frying.
  9. Check whether the oil is hot enough by throwing a small piece of dough into it. If it went straight up to the surface, you may start frying!

    Alternatively, if you want to make your chruściki healthier, you may bake them in the oven heated to 356°F (180°C) for 8-10 minutes. Chrullers baking in a oven.
  10. Fry chruściki in batches, for about 1-3 minutes on each side, until they change the color to a golden brown. Fry the chusciki cookies in batches.
  11. After frying, place them on the planed lined with paper towels to remove the excessive fat.
  12. Cool down and sprinkle with icing sugar. Bon appetit!

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

100

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 493Total Fat: 54gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 48gCholesterol: 8mgSodium: 2mgCarbohydrates: 3gFiber: 0gSugar: 1gProtein: 0g

These data are indicative and calculated by Nutritionix

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