Slavic Ladies Create Sweet Holiday Treats

"We get so many orders, can't fill 'em all," said Gloria Cruso, as she dipped another pusharata into a thick, gooey frosting.

Time to make the doughnuts began late Thursday night at the Biloxi Masonic Lodge.

"We looked like elves. We looked like little elves coming around. There was almost 45 people here," said Serena Gilich, who's president of the Slavic Ladies Auxiliary.

The Slavic ladies have been making the tasty treats for years.

We caught up with the second shift of elves before sunrise. For those who may be new to the coast, these frosted, tasty treats are Yugoslavian doughnuts, filled with bits of fruit and nuts.

"I'm the dipper," said Cruso, who had the sticky assignment of dipping the fried dough balls into a rich, almond flavored frosting.

"They started last night about nine o'clock. They went home and some new group just came in to fill the orders," she said.

These doughnut makers enjoy their job, and what's more, they appreciate each other's company. The "pusharata" ladies look forward to making these sweet creations as much as their customers look forward to eating the holiday treats.

Pat Skrnich is a longtime pusharata maker.

"Getting together with everybody. It's just a lot of fun. They said they were dancing last night," she said.

"We got five boxes with two dozen in each box on one," shouted one of the ladies, as the order sorting began in earnest.

A wind tunnel of sorts was part of the process this year. Breeze from a giant fan helps counter the humidity and hasten the drying process.

"Thick, thick stuff," said Skrnich, stirring a bucket of frosting,"This is the best part, right here."

The ladies made and sold an amazing 900 dozen pusharatas this year.

"This one's ready to go over here," said another doughnut maker, as the orders began stacking up.

If you missed out this holiday, you can be certain these Slavic doughnut makers will be at it again, next Christmas.