Pacsni

by | May 24, 2024 | Breads, buns & biscuits

During and after World War II, production of many favoured bakery products ceased in Hungary, and only after nationalisation did they resume. One such product was pacsni made from stretched puff pastry. According to old newspaper articles, it seems that pacsni was a popular pastry throughout the 20th century, mainly in Budapest, but for a long time it was not sold as pacsni, but as pastrana. An article from 1938 described it as something that was served with coffee in cafés and hotels. Pacsni was one of the best-selling and most popular bakery products in the 1960s and 1970s in the metropolitan milk bars.

Pacsni is an exciting, unique pastry that can’t be found anywhere else, it could be a true Hungaricum, but it has almost entirely disappeared from our culture. Many say it is difficult to make by machine, and slow and cumbersome to make by hand. The first large-scale production of pacsni was launched in Budapest, at the Százados Road Bread Factory. However, the mechanization did not work, so the product remained in the supply of small bakeries.

Pacsni’s fat content is only 16-18%, so it is borderline between plain butter pastry and semi-buttery puff pastry. Nevertheless, it belongs to heavy butter pastries, since most of the butter is not added at the kneading stage but is placed between the layers of dough as a separating agent. Due to the special preparation pacsni is soft on the inside, and crispy on the outside; it can be eaten all day as a nice and delicious pastry on its own, or with coffee or tea as a breakfast, lunch or snack.

Sources: hegylakomagazin.hu, telex.hu

Pacsni
Pacsni – photo: zserbo.com
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Hungarian cottage cheese

This is what Hungarian túró looks like

You often ask me what kind of cottage cheese (or curd cheese or farmer's cheese - call it what you want) I use in the recipes. In Hungary the store-bought cottage cheese is dry and crumbly as you can see in the picture. So if a recipe calls for túró, I mean this type. If you can't obtain túró, you can try to make your own from whole milk. Click on the link below.

Metric system vs cup

In Hungary metric units are in use, all the recipes on this website are based on this system, so a kitchen scale is necessary. Since I’m not familiar with cup as a measurement unit, I convert grams to cups by using an online converter. The values in brackets, therefore, are only approximate volumes, so, please, double-check them before you start cooking.

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