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Two days to celebrate paczki in Chicago!

In Poland, today is Tlusty Czwartek or Fat Thursday, otherwise known as Paczki Day (say “POONCH-key”). In the U.S., though, many Poles celebrate on Fat Tuesday, otherwise known as Mardi Gras, which will be next week. Chicagoans are lucky — we get to observe both days! Thousands of Polish Chicagoans as well as other pastry […]

Mardi Gras? In Chicago, prepare for Paczki Day!

Other cities go all out for Mardi Gras, but here in Chicago, Louisiana-style celebrations and Latin-American Carnivale fiestas take a back seat. In our town, the Tuesday before Lent, this year March 8, is Paczki Day! Here are a dozen spots for Polish pastry perfection.

Chicago ushers in the Atomic Age — and its cake

In 1942, on a squash court in Hyde Park, Enrico Fermi and his colleagues cooked up an “atomic pile,” a roughly spherical stack of graphite bricks layered with uranium. With this pile, on Dec. 2, the physicists achieved the first self-sustaining nuclear chain reaction, an event that led to the atomic bomb and nuclear energy.

At some point after that, an enterprising Chicago baker dubbed his latest layered creation the “atomic cake.”