Romanian-Canadian immigrant brings Kurtos Kolac to Vancouver
It’s been called Kurtos Kolac, Kurtos Kolacs, Kurtos Kalac, Kurtos Kolak, or Kurtus cake, Chimney cake. Originating from Eastern Europe, the Kurtos bread or cake has been traditionally sold at food fairs. Basically, it is made with a sweet bread dough rolled flat, cut into thin little strips, then wrapped around a wooden cone with a handle. The dough is then coated with sugar and the forms placed on a barbecue over heated volcanic rocks.
Modern bakeries use commercially made kurtos kolac machines that have a rotisserie device capable of turning forms – four or five at a time for six or seven minutes until the sugar becomes caramelized and the dough is baked. Once baked, the dough is rolled in ground nuts, walnuts by tradition, which sticks to the caramelized sugar.
Best eaten when freshly baked, the kurtos kolac is especially popular during holiday seasons like Eastern and Christmas time and for special events like wedding celebrations.
There is only one bakery in Vancouver called Transylvanian Traditions Bakery who makes the Kurtos Kolacs. The bakery is run by Stoian, a Romanian-Canadian immigrant, who moved to Canada two years ago.
Located in the west end of Downtown Vancouver, the little bakery entices passerbys with the smell of warm, sweet dough.
Kurtos Kolaks can be eaten in many ways. It can serve as a base and eaten with berries and yogurt or whipping cream. But like any other food introduced to Canada, Kurtos Kolak is sure to evolve into something distinctively Canadian.