Winter school break in Poland has just finished. This year there was not much snow or almost not at all, the only destination for skiing was Mountains. Zakopane, Karpacz, Białka and Bukowina Tatrzańska – these are the most popular Winter resorts, that deserve to go, you can feel and see there the magic of Polish Winter. And of course you can eat there something delicious, specific to this region:) Polish highlanders cuisine is not sophisticated. There is lots of cabbage used, potatoes, sheep cheese – oscypek and sheep meat. I love most of these dishes, but eating Kwaśnica is a must for me when I’m in mountains. Kwaśnica – Polish Sauerkraut Soup is cooked with lots of meat. It is quite fat, perfect to get warm and comfort yourself after a whole day of skiing.
Lately I gathered most delicious Polish soups all together here: 10 Traditional Polish Soups, try them all and decide which one you like the most:)
Few weeks ago I met a Greek couple leaving in Warsaw. Dimitris asked me to show him how to cook Bigos. When we talked about Polish cuisine, Anja said that soups are something special for Poland. And this is a fact: in Poland soups are a staple in Polish homes for dinner. You can get it also in any restaurant, served as an appetizer. Check my review of 10 Traditional Polish Soups, soups I like the most and which are the most specific to Polish cuisine.
Which one have you tried and which one is your favorite?
Polish smoked sausage is always good, but if you need a quick and easy dinner, buy few pieces and serve it boiled. For boiled Polish smoked kiełbasa choose good kind of sausage. In Poland there is a lot of them, but you need to be careful and check the ingredients, as producers are often trying to save and put many strange and unwanted food enhancers in it.
Boiled Polish Smoked Kiełbasa tastes best with horseradish and mustard. Choose the level of intensity of both to your taste. I like strong horseradish sauce and a mustard with character. In Poland I buy a mustard called Russian, for it being really strong.
Beef Tongues in Aspic is a dish that in Poland is served for Christmas or New Years Eve. This is an old style food, zero waste cooking and oh so yummy:) The best beef tongues in aspic I remember made our neighbor, Mirka:)
The whole preparing process may be repulsive to some people, but the tongue’s meat is very tasty and quite usual in texture.
Polish Bigos (Hunter’s Stew) is one of the most known Polish dishes. It’s pronounced: [ˈbʲiɡɔs]. Each family has it’s own recipe for bigos and each bigos is different, but the core is sauerkraut or/and fresh shredded cabbage and various kinds of chopped meats. You can use meats you like or which have left in the fridge. Yes, this is a great way to get rid of leftovers:) The more kinds of meats you use, the richer the taste, just follow your likes.
You need to stew all the ingredients for couple of hours. Some cooks are making bigos for 3 days, each day stewing again and cooling, so that bigos’ flavors combine and give the best taste:) People in Poland say that the more times you warm up bigos, the better it tastes.
Polish Oven Roasted Sausage and Sauerkraut is a perfect idea for Autumn and Winter warming, hearty and comforting Polish meal. Choose good Polish smoked kiełbasa – it should have some fat in it, to spread the taste all over the sauerkraut and make the dish complete:)
Don’t forget about caraway seeds – in Polish: kminek. As the cabbage is rather hard to digest and can cause gases, caraway seeds are here to help you and ease your stomach.
Rosół with Drop Noodles is a special homemade soup in many Polish families. It reminds our Grandmas and childhood. One of the readers on facebook said: “First soup and noodle making lesson I had, standing on a stool, at the stove with my babciu”. Thank you DaMo!
Rosół in Poland is the best medicine, if you are cold or get a flu, your Polish Mama would start making rosół, to take care of you in the best way she knows:)
Kluski lane are easy to make, they will be great in other soups as well. You can prepare them in few minutes, so if you suddenly run out of pasta, you will be fine with this recipe:)
Delicious vegetarian Millet Stuffed Peppers are a staple in my house. In fall months peppers are cheap, so I buy them often and serve them fresh and baked. This time I had them stuffed with vegetables and millet. I cook seasonally and locally.
Check also other Polish recipes best in Autumn: Autumn food.
My Mum used to bake this kind of small Sauerkraut and Mushrooms Buns to accompany beets borscht on Christmas Eve. Unfortunately when I asked her, she did not remember the recipe, what is more interesting, she even didn’t remember that she has been actually baking them:) Eventually I decided to go for Paszteciki recipe I found on Kwestia Smaku, one of my favorite cooking websites.
I don’t remember my Grandma using pumpkin, it was not popular those days. It became popular only recently, my sister would cook spicy oriental version of the soup, with curry powder and chili. I decided to cook delicate Baked Pumpkin Soup, milky, buttery, with a hint of garlic.
Try also other Polish seasonal Autumn food recipes: Autumn food.
Dumplings are Polish favorite dish. They can have a whole range of fillings: sauerkraut, meat, farmers cheese, fruits. I had Zamojskie Buckwheat Dumplings for the first time when I was in college. I went with other students for hiking in Bieszczady Mountains. On a way back my friend Kasia took me to her hometown: Krasnystaw, near Lublin and Zamość. Her mum cooked Buckwheat Dumplings and they were delicious. My new favorite dumpling flavor:)
Lately I found out that buckwheat dumplings are specialty of this area of Poland. They are called Zamojskie (from Zamość), and sometimes Lubelskie (from Lublin).
Mushroom Barley Soup is a great seasonal food idea for Autumn. If you happen to get fresh wild mushrooms you need to try it. The add of barley makes the soup more filing and comforting in chilling weather.
In September my friend Agnieszka took me to her old Summer place at the end of small Masovian village. She did not go to this place for few years, it appeared that a lot of young trees have grown there, most of all – spruces. How surprised we were to find a lot of Slippery Jacks all over the place:)
Last weekend we went to Mazuria district to visit my parents. It was the second year we celebrated our family’s Baked Potato Day:) After dark we lighted a campfire and we baked sausages and potatoes. My sister-in-law, Marzena told us about an onion water from Kurpie, she tried few years ago visiting her friends. It sounded interesting, so I asked google and found an easy recipe I followed: Woda cebulowa. Actually when we were drinking it, we remembered that our Grandma was sometimes preparing this kind of drink and we had it with boiled potatoes, only she was also adding sour cream and called it Kvas.
Last weekend we went to Mazuria Lake district in the North East of Poland. We went mushroom picking twice and they both were successful:) Check more photos from the woods on my Instagram account. I was hunting for parasol mushrooms and I was lucky to find them in one of my places:) I made fried parasol mushrooms for dinner. They were a delicious alternative for a piece of meat. Remember to pick only mushrooms that you are absolutely sure that are edible or ask for expertise someone experienced and trustworthy, who can recognize them.
Check more seasonal recipes under section: Autumn food.
When there is a season for tomatoes, we should use it and cook this gorgeous Tomato soup with fresh tomatoes. In winter and in spring, or when you are just tired and you need to put quickly dinner on the table – then you can cook traditional Polish Tomato Soup. The soup is more related to PRL tradition, but still – it is one of the most favorite Polish soups.
People in Poland laugh that when we have a chicken broth on Sunday, then on Monday we eat tomato soup:) Yes, actually it is as easy as this: if you add tomato concentrate to the broth – your budget tomato soup is ready:)
Poles cannot agree whether tomato soup should be served with rice or rather with pasta:) In my family house we used to have it with rice, but I like both options:)
Last days of summer and the beginning of autumn is a perfect time to cook Fresh Tomato Soup. In the middle of the season tomatoes are cheap and beautiful, there is a whole range of tomato species available. Remember to choose only the ripest pieces of your favorite tomatoes. They may be soft and not really best looking, but believe me, they will make delicious soup.
Check also winter version of Polish Tomato Soup with tomato concentrate. Believe me, it is also delicious:)
Autumn food needs to be warming, filling and thick. It needs to be comforting during long, dark, chilling evenings. And this is exactly what Polish split peas soup is. I cook it on pork bones, I simmer bones for few hours, to get a really reach stock. I invite you to check Grochówka.
Polish split peas soup recipe is under a new section on my blog: Autumn food. As this is the first Autumn of CookINPolish.com, this section is going to enlarge perspectively. Subscribe to my newsletter not to miss a recipe. I will be happy to see new subscribers:)
Kartacze – Polish Potato Dumplings are made of raw potatoes with small (or non) addition of cooked ones. They are regional dish in Podlasie – North- Western part of Poland. Go to Białystok to try the best Kartacze ever:) Or make them yourself:)
In my family house we called them Kołduny, so the naming may vary:) My Grandma and Mum were born and raised on the present territory of Belarus, but back then it was Poland, language and cuisines mixed. Kartacze can also be called Cepeliny (dish with Lithuanian origins).
There is a range of Polish potato dumplings, they vary in size and ingredients, whether cooked or raw potatoes are used, what kind of flour is used and is it served as a side dish or a main course. If you are not sure which potato dumplings you like the most, check my short comparison of Polish potato dumplings with pictures and recipes: http://cookinpolish.com/5-kinds-of-polish-potato-dumplings/.