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What the Krapfen?

Krapfen are apricot jelly filled doughnuts eaten in the Fasching (Carnival/Mardi Gras) time in Austria leading up to Lent.

The local Viennese newspaper published their annual list of the top ten Krapfen in Vienna. If you’re here, try a few (or a dozen) - https://www.diepresse.com/6243140/wo-es-in-wien-die-besten-krapfen-gibt?utm_medium=Social&xtor=CS1-15&utm_source=Facebook&fbclid=IwAR1mx8CxgjZHOvyu-KBjWp0IANlUAyApVOJPLRwlN6a6qxJWVym_hteyPdo#Echobox=1674728886

Posted by
556 posts

In Bavaria as well we are calling this Carnival treat Krapfen. And the original Munich filling is rose hip jelly. But of course the variety is huge as well (including apricot jelly). In fact I just ate one for dessert with plum jelly filling :-)

Ja well the Internet is telling us that the word Krapfen is coming from Krapho (Old High German) and Krapfe (Middle High German) and so on :-) Long explanation in Wikipedia but seems to refer to the hook shaped pastry it used to be .....

In Berlin for example they are calling them Berliner Pfannkuchen.

Posted by
3861 posts

Are Krapfen available Year around but especially made with apricot jam during Carnival? We’ll be in Vienna for a few weeks this summer beginning in late June. I’m hoping there will be other pastries at this time made with fresh apricots too. I planted an apricot tree 3 years ago just so I could try to make Marillenknödel and jam. Last year was a success for our first crop.

Posted by
2194 posts

a well the Internet is telling us that the word Krapfen is coming either from Krapho (Old High German) or Krapfe (Middle High German) and so on :-)

Ah - not either ... or. It's the same word at two different stages of development. My etymological dictionary says the word belongs to the same family as English crumb, old English cruma, German Krume, but the root ending is formed with -p- instead of -m-. Semantically, it is based on a Germanic root for "to turn", which apparently describes the form. But no one is aware of this etymological connection any more, so it is actually no longer part of the meaning of the modern word "Krapfen".

In my Franconian homeland, Krapfen are filled with either Marille / apricot jam or plum jam. Only in the supermarket there are pseudo-Krapfen filled with that sickening mishmash of synthetic raspberry and strawberry "jam".

Posted by
5295 posts

I would translate Krapfen into jelly-filled doughnut, because that is what it is.

Yes, you can get Krapfen year round. My tip - the ubiquitous bakery chains of Anker, Der Mann and Stroeck have better pastries than the ones you might queue for in those uber-touristy coffeehouses. Aida, however, is where I’d go for my Krapfen, particularly during the Fasching period where they have fun flavors for a limited time. This article gives you an idea - https://www.zeitfuergenuss.at/essen/2014/02/eine_million_faschingskrapfenin13variationenbeiaida.html

Posted by
556 posts

@sla019

Just changed it - Thanks.

@Emily

I did not know that you can buy Krapfen in Vienna all year long. In think in Munich you will find then during the year mostly in some Supermarkets (or maybe I've overlooked them in bakeries). For me Krapfen is like strawberries, asparagus or gingerbread and therefore I want to eat them only during the sesaon like you do :-)

Posted by
100 posts

I second Emily's recommendation of local bakery chains in Vienna, after I spent 4 weeks wandering the streets in the capital city's 23 districts.

The ubiquity of Anker, Ströck, Oberlaa, Der Mann, etc. means a ubiquity of pastries for both in-house and to-go variety and delights. I'll track along with the preference of Vienna's many commuters and residents, and coming across one or any of these during a long walkabout is pretty easy, especially at a S-/U-Bahn station.

e.g.,

Posted by
1807 posts

Krapfen are apricot jelly filled doughnuts eaten in the Fasching ...

But note that there is no hole in the middle (i.e. the shape is an ellipsoid, not a torus).
Somewhere on the side you will find a tiny hole where the apricot jam was injected. If you bite into the Krapfen at the wrong side the jam may come out through that hole.

My preference for Krapfen was Groissböck then, but I had not been there for years.

Posted by
5295 posts

Jelly doughnuts in the US don’t have a hole in the middle either. They are just like a Krapfen.

Posted by
1207 posts

Saw some fancy filled and glazed ones here locally for euro 1.80 a piece yesterday! Used to get them three for a euro a few years ago sugar or powder sugar covered. Everything is more expensive now a days. "Helau"

Posted by
1207 posts

Had one filled with Sauerkraut today in Oberpfalz, Germany.

Posted by
221 posts

Here in Pennsylvania we have a Krapf Bus Company. Their motto, thankfully, is not "Take a Krapf".

Posted by
5295 posts

@mchpp - One of my favorite things to eat in Vienna is a bauern krapfen (giant krapfen) topped with sauerkraut. You can only get it at the Christmas Market at Karlsplatz. Unfortunately, that is not a fasching thing around here.

Posted by
8204 posts

Some places in the US midwest still refer to them as bismarcks.