June 26, 2012

Bring on the Pusharatas!

Picture taken from Old Biloxi Recipes Facebook page.
Last night my mom and I crossed off a very important "to-do" on our ever-growing list.

We ordered THE pusharatas (pronounced push-uh-rot-uh) for the wedding reception. Now I realize this is not a big deal for some of you, well, probably most of you. Even if you're from the South, unless you hail from the very southernmost area of Jackson and Harrison counties in Mississippi (or know someone here), then you probably have never heard of these yummy treats, or more importantly - you haven't eaten one.

And for that, I feel SO sorry for you. After all, it's not your fault you haven't had these yummy Yugoslavian pastries. God just doesn't love you as much as He does us coastal Mississippians, that's all. I'm totally kidding, God really loves you, I promise.

For as long as I can remember, the women in my family have told me that there was no way I was going to get married and not have pusharatas at the reception. I know I'm going to screw up this history lesson, but here's what I know about the pusharatas (and what I've found from their very limited internet presence). When the Croatian/Yugoslavian folks emigrated to the East Biloxi area of the MS Gulf Coast, around the time of World War I, they brought with them many yummy recipes. As time passed, the wives of this group formed the Slavonian Ladies Auxiliary. Each Christmas, they sell THOUSANDS of pusharatas as their annual fundraiser. The pusharatas themselves are kind of like a doughnut hole, but filled with fruity goodness (think raisins, oranges, apples, lemons), then deep fried (the Croatians fit in well in the south) and then dipped in a sugary glaze. It seriously takes the better part of a day and multiple sets of hands to make these treats. Not to mention, you HAVE to take the weather into consideration, if it's an unusually humid day, you can forget about your glaze setting right. I've done it twice in my life and I'm here to tell you, they're well worth the $7 per dozen we pay to buy them from the sweet Slavonian ladies.

Up close and personal
So we gave a call to the lady who calls us every November to confirm our order for Christmas (yeah, we're on THE list). We were shocked to find that she is over 80 years old and said she doesn't make them for wedding orders anymore. After talking with her for a while, she decided that she just couldn't let me not have them at my wedding (especially when I told her the groom is not from here and he absolutely loves them). So she's agreed to do them for us, along with another lady she's been 'training' using her Croatian mother-in-law's original recipe.

Wanna know why it takes droves of women to make them? One batch of the recipe makes 42 DOZEN pusharatas. I'll help you out with the math, there, that's 504 little pieces of heaven. Now, while I know my guests will love them, I don't think we need that many, so we were able to order a half batch of only 21 dozen...

Here's a recipe I found online, but I bet it's not the super secret recipe they use. Gather up 85 of your best friends (or 3) and have a blast making these or just support them at Christmastime and order some from the Slavonian Ladies Auxiliary.


  1. YUM! Thanks Sheila, now I'm counting down till Christmas! Love me some pusharatas!

  2. Catching up on your blog. I've had the above mentioned pusharatas, thanks to Sandra Hill who is a member of the Slavonian Ladies Auxiliary. OMG they are so good. i'm thrilled for your guests that you are going to serve them at your wedding. And not to be funny, but are you sure you don't need 42 dozen? Hope you don't run out! :)


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