When I was a child, I didn't like Pončkai because Tatjana filled them with cherry preserves. I hated biting into the eggy, yeast dough and feeling the sensation of cherry skin rubbing against the roof of my mouth. I wanted American-style, pastry-filled donuts.
Here is Tatjana's recipe for Pončkai:
Here is how I wrote up the recipe:
Pončkai (Grandma's tested recipe)
1-1/2 packets [fresh, cake] yeast, bloomed with 1/2 cup water
1 cup flour heated with 1 cup boiling milk, allowing to stand and mixed well
[1 tablespoon sugar]
[1 cup warm milk]
7 egg yolks beaten with 1-1/4 cups granulated sugar
[about 2 pounds flour]
1/3 to 1/2 pound [unsalted] butter, melted
4 egg whites, beaten until stiff
[lard and Crisco, for frying]
Note in side margin: Some people in Lithuania add 1/4 cup sour cream.
Add the bloomed yeast to the heated milk mixture with 1 tablespoon sugar. Mix well; then add 1 cup warm milk and mix again, after that add the egg yolk/sugar mixture and [ ... ] some flour, then the warm butter and again flour, then the beaten egg whites, and again more flour.
Note in side margin: add 1/2 teaspoon salt (definitely).
Add 1/3 stick of real vanilla (finely chopped). In all, mix in about 2 pounds flour (1 small package), it's possible to add 1 cup more.
It's good to fry these in a mixture of half fat (lard) and half "Crisco."