BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - They keep people happy for Christmas and a culture alive: Pusharatas. The favorite Croatian pastry is in demand once again for Christmas.
It may look easy, but there's a lot of work behind the magic of the pusharata.
"I will be here tomorrow until the last dozen is sold. I work all night every year," said Slavonian Ladies Auxiliary President Faye Misko.
This year, more than 14,000 of the round morsels will be made. They are prepared with love by the Slavonian Ladies Auxiliary. They are in such high demand, there's a waiting list of more than 100 dozen.
"They look forward to it every year for their Christmas, and we look forward to doing it for them," Misko said. "It's the heritage of the Slavonian Ladies Auxiliary."
The process is well designed, from the batter created with loads of flour, sugar, nuts and fruit, to the cooking, which is done at the main station with small fryers and many hands on deck. A bigger fryer has helped cut down on cooking time.
For everyone, it's all about family tradition and culture. Kaiden Wade is in the mix for the second year helping his dad, who helped his family.
"Just to help, and because my grandma," Kaiden said. "She did it, and I would just like to do it. That's why, really."
His dad, Kevin Wade, is just as dedicated to tradition.
"My grandma, Anastasia Jurich, has been doing it for years, and we just come and follow in her footsteps trying to keep everything going," said Kevin.
Leigh Adamson also owes her love of laboring over pusharatas to her grandmother.
"I as a little girl made them, like 10, 12 years old, 14 years old, made them in her kitchen," said Adamson.
So did Dianne Ott.
"We did it because we are of Croatian decent. Our grandmothers, everyone did it, and we just wanted to carry it on," Ott said. "Our heritage. That's another reason we feel good about ourselves doing it. Work, work, work."