Words that are pronounced nothing like their spelling drive me crazy. I know with Kolacky the issue is that the word is Polish, but typing it and worrying that it won’t be pronounced right when read makes my skin crawl. In my family, we pronounced it [kuh-lahch-kee], so you should too. I am quite familiar with butchering pronunciations. My maiden name, which is Latvian, was mispronounced by teachers, doctors, and friends, etcetera for years. 97% of people that know my maiden name say it wrong, and it’s easier to just let them say it their way than to repeat it over and over.
Have you ever come across the word Schuylkill? This one makes me crazy. If you’ve ever traveled on this part of Interstate 76 that is in Eastern Pennsylvania, you know what I’m talking about. Siri knows how to pronounce it, but when compared what I heard to what I saw on the highway sign, I thought I was going the wrong way. I was driving my son to a swim meet along the sketchy 8 lane stretch from Philadelphia to New Jersey and was terrified. Cars are flying across lanes and a new transplant to PA from Chicago gripped the steering wheel with sweaty hands and made it through.
I talked to some other parents about traffic and how long it took us to get there and they kept saying that word, Schuylkill, yet pronouncing it completely different. Finally, I was like “Ummm so what is that anyway?” The PA locals think I’m stupid, but obviously I didn’t grow up driving on what I thought was pronounced SkullyKILL.
So it’s easy to know how to pronounce a word when you say it before you’ve seen its spelling. It’s easy to have the superior attitude when you are the one in the knowing.
Pronounce Kolacky however you want, they will still taste amazing. This recipe is from my mom who is mostly Polish. It only has a few simple ingredients and the only difficulty might be finding the right filling. My favorite 2 flavors are cherry and apricot, but raspberry and prune are also good.
It has to be Solo brand cake and pastry filling. No exceptions. I checked with legal and the higher ups. There is no room for deviation. I went to 6 grocery stores until I found it. My mom was getting ready to ship me some if I still couldn’t find it here, but fortunately Albertson’s had it. It was worth the drive.
The first time I made these they were a disaster. I made them too big and they puffed up and leaked and burned. Take the time to roll the dough into a tiny ball, and then make a dent deep enough to hold enough filling, yet don’t go all the way through the dough. It’s not difficult, but it takes some patience.
When I was a kid, if our next door neighbor got wind that my mom made these, he would try to eat the entire platter. Seriously, a grown man would try to hide in the corner with a fabulous tray of Kolacky. Not exaggerating- they are that good.
These are the perfect cookies for Santa. I’m sure he would love them with a nice cup of tea, because he might not like milk.
I’m sure all of your shopping is done. Presents are wrapped. All of the grocery shopping is done. Laundry is folded and neatly put away. You don’t have a single thing to do, so you might as well bake some KOLACKY for your family and set a couple to the side for Santa. Merry Christmas!
- 1/2 lb (2 sticks) unsalted butter- softened
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 egg + 1 egg yolk
- 1/4 tsp salt (optional)
- 2 cups flour
- Solo brand cake and pastry filling (I used Cherry and Apricot)- typically this is found in the baking aisle
- Preheat oven to 350°.
- Cream butter and sugar.
- Beat in egg and vanilla.
- Add flour until thoroughly combined.
- Roll little balls of dough, and line on cookie sheet.
- Make little dents in dough and add filling.
- Bake 20 minutes.
- Cool and dust with powdered sugar.