ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Polish Family Traditions - Making Kolachki / Nut rolls

Updated on January 31, 2013

One of my families absolute favorite treats is Kolachki, otherwise known by most people as nut rolls. These are favorite goodies for holiday times and are a staple of both our Christmas and Easter celebrations. They are not difficult at all to make and can be marvelous presents for almost anyone on your list. There is a strong Eastern and Central European tradition in making these yummy treats and I have seen the name spelled many different ways - Kolachky, Kolachki, Kolache, Rohlicky, and Rozky to name just a few. They were always served at celebrations like birthdays, Christenings, anniversaries and weddings. Each household had it's family style of rolling and filling.

Kolachki itself can take many different forms but is always a desert. Sometimes it can be a cookie with a fruit filling, or sometimes a ring style coffee cake . It starts with a sweet yeast bread type dough, rolled flat and spread with either a poppy seed filling or a nut paste filling. Then it is rolled up like a log, the ends are pinched shut, and it is baked to a golden brown. The end result is always mouth watering. I have also found that Kolachki freeze very well. Wrap each log in 3 layers of plastic wrap, follow up with a layer of foil and place in a marked freezer bag with the date and name of the item. You then have a ready gift for that neighbor or friend who goes way out in driving you to a doctor's appointment or fixing the car while your husband is out of town.

When we were growing up in Pennsylvania most of our neighbors made nut rolls with walnut filling. Although these were really good, they paled in comparison to my husband's very Polish family recipe of poppy seed filling or their walnut filling which was rich and thick. I tried to imitate that thick rich filling and most of the time it baked right out of my bread roll and onto the baking sheet. What a mess! After years of begging, I was finally presented with an old Aunt's nut filling recipe. This put the crown on my head! After stumbling through learning to make Kielbasa and Pirogi I now could make really good Kolachki. I was beginning to feel like I had finally earned a place in the family, and that just maybe there was a little Polish blood beginning to run in my veins too. I have made my own modifications over the years. We have lived in Arizona for 24 years and this is definitely pecan country. Our KolachkI is filled with pecan paste so I guess that makes it a Stylized Arizona Polish KolachkI!

Filling Recipe

  • 8 cups pecans, ground
  • 1-2 cups plain breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup margarine, melted
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup granulated white sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 can evaporated milk

Mix together everything but the bread crumbs. When well blended gradually add the bread crumbs until it all comes together in a thick paste. The paste should stick to the spoon when you turn it over. This will make enough filling for 6 nut rolls (Kolachki).

Dough Recipe

You can really use any sweet roll dough you like, but I will give you our Aunt's recipe here as it will make 6 rolls too and will then use up all the filling. Any extra filling can be bagged and frozen for any other treat ideas you may have.

1 cup milk
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter or margarine
1 package yeast
3 eggs
1/2 tsp salt
4 -5 cups all purpose flour

Scald the milk. Add butter and sugar. Stir until the butter is melted. This should cool things down enough to add the yeast. Stir it in and let it sit for 5 or 10 minutes. This should be enough time to see bubbles forming and know that the yeast is working. Pour into a large mixing bowl. Add the eggs and with a good sturdy spoon mix in the flour 1 cup at a time. Add the salt in with a cup of the flour. Be ready to use your hands in mixing, but be careful not to overwork the dough, it should be tender, yet easy to handle. When it reaches that point knead it gently and place it in a greased bowl with a cover on top.


When it has about doubled in bulk, punch it down and knead it again. Divide it into 6 equal portions. roll only one portion at a time to a rectangle about 14 inches by 8 or 10 inches. Spread a mounded cup of the nut filling on the rectangle leaving about a 1/2 inch margin all around. Roll it up from the longest edge. Pinch and fold under the two ends and place on an ungreased cookie sheet seam down. I can place three at a time on my sheets.

Bake at 350 degrees F for about 15-20 minutes or until golden in color.

Kolachki does not have to be shaped in logs. For example, Valentine's Day is coming. If you're really creative, you might be able to bend the Kolachki into the shape of a heart. Use your imagination and have some fun!

3.8 stars from 9 ratings of Kolachki


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • SimpleJoys profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago

      Thank you PaisleeGal. I love family traditions. Be glad to check out your stories!

    • PaisleeGal profile image

      Pat Materna 

      6 years ago from Memphis, Tennessee, USA

      Food traditions are a good thing in any family. So many traditions seem to center around food. Enjoyed the article. Welcome to hubpages. I'm fairly new at this whole thing too. I hope you can check out my little stories about family and such. Voted up!

    • Pearldiver profile image

      Rob Welsh 

      6 years ago from Tomorrow - In Words & NZ Time.

      Thanks for clarifying that... I now completely understand... often we all have different ways of saying the same things... here, generally scalding the milk equals to scorching it! We have a high fat content in our milk, which is why I needed to ask... Cheers, this is now on the things to make schedule... take care.. PD

    • SimpleJoys profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago

      To scald milk heat it to 82 degrees F. I think this is 180 degrees C. This should be enough to kill off any remaining bacteria and to change the protein structure in the milk so it is more conducive to baking. Milk is often scalded when used in baking yeast breads. Be careful not to scorch it. If the milk has any fat content at all it will form a "skin" on the top. This is good - use it just like that! Thank you for reading this and for your comment. It's hard to get a good recipe for kolachki. They are well guarded family secrets. I enjoy passing these recipes on as I feel the flavor (like the love in creating it)as well as the tradition will only grow!

    • Pearldiver profile image

      Rob Welsh 

      6 years ago from Tomorrow - In Words & NZ Time.

      Thank you very much for sharing this recipe that will be used and enjoyed in NZ.. pecans are awesome and this I will really have some fun with... I have tried this once years ago, but it was made with poppy seeds and was the first time I had tried poppy seeds... so I have fond memories of Kolachki and an old neighbor who had moved here after WW2... I mowed her lawns for her and she always gave me this wonderful treat, but only said it was a secret which would lose its taste if she told me what it was! So I understand its relevance and will certainly try this recipe.. Just one Q: What do you mean 'Scald' the milk?? Cheers for this... PD


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)