Thursday, July 21, 2011


I am reading The Yiddish Policemen's Union, by Michael Chabon! On p. 172 I fell in love with a fictional food, shtekeleh, the Filipino-style Chinese donut. Believe me, I Googled it, just in case it wasn't fictional.

Here is my request:

If you are a fabulous cook, will you please create this thing? I have not finished this book, so if there is pertinent plot info related to the shtekeleh--a word I cannot spell--please don't post a spoiler! I will get there. In the meantime, I am hoping for shtekeleh to one day be a real thing in the world.

I direct my request to all, but in particular:

1) My book group, which contains some fabulous cooks!
2) Chef Ashley Simone, of Foodgasm (or her mother, who can tell her!)
3) Carmelita, of CookItaly (even though this is not even fictionally Italian)
4) Bacon and Chocolate (because, why not?)
5) Market to Menu (because we could use some healthy, locally grown Filipino-style Chinese donuts, warm in the early mornings, at the Farmers Market, right?)

Anyhoo, this has been a presentation of Fat Tuesday, brought to you on a Thor's Day in the blog.


Sandy Longhorn said...

I think Thor would be down for some shtekeleh.

I loved Cavalier and Clay but haven't read YPU. Do you recommend?

Kathleen said...

Yes, yes, so far I definitely recommend this. It suspends me in a state between laughing and weeping!

I plan to borrow Kavalier & Clay from my friend, Kim, even if I have to bribe her with shtekeleh!

Dale said...

Can't help, I'm afraid. My cooking skills run out at scrambled eggs and spaghetti.

Anonymous said...

This is a great precursor to the greatness that is Kav & Clay -- and no, the plot does not pivot on shtekeleh. :o)

Maureen said...

You certainly whet my appetite.

And I had to go look to see if a recipe exists. There is one (at Oggi, posted way back in 2007) for something called bicho-bicho. It's a bit like our sugared cruellers, which, alas, I cannot eat because the yeast can set off a migraine.

Kathleen said...

Well, we must hope for a yeast-free and gluten-free version. And for the lactose intolerant it will be OK to dip it in plain tea, not milky tea!

Thanks, all, for tips & recommendations & cooking skills similar to/possibly worse than my own!

Kathleen said...

And, yes, I found a bicho-bicho recipe in my search, too!

Kim said...

Is Shtekeleh kosher?

Kathleen said...

I think it must be, somehow, kosher, yes.

Anonymous said...


Cathy said...

I used to work in a factory where we had regular potlucks, and the Filipino ladies did bring some things that looked like donuts. Nothing Chinese about them, as far as I know. I'll have to ask my brother (who was my boss at the time) what he remembers about those.

Kathleen said...

Thanks, Cathy! That might be the bicho-bicho! In this book, the present and the future are a wee bit different than...actual and expected...affecting world cuisine, among other things. This book also has excellent pie!