Braided Yeast Easter Bread

Pani Steciuk’s Paska Recipe

I love cooking according to old recipes, specially I like real recipes of real people. These recipes are passed down from generation to generation and are cherished by the whole families. When these dishes are cooked and eaten, people gather and recollect the old times and recall people who are no longer with them. Last week I found this kind of recipe on one of the Facebook groups gathering Polish food lovers. Tracey shared her Babcia’s recipe for Braided Yeast Easter Bread, Pani Staciuk’s Paska. I am so happy that she shared with me her memories and also a picture of her Grandma, Maria Steciuk!

Braided Yeast Eastern Bread baked.
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Murzynek Polish Chocolate Cake

Classic Polish Chocolate cake is easy and delicious. Moist and fluffy, delicate, with perfect amount of cocoa and sweetness. Classic Murzynek Polish Chocolate cake was the first cake I have baked myself:) It was so popular during PRL and still is now. My children love this cake, they love to bake it themselves, my son even choose it as his birthday cake. Try this traditional recipe, Polish chocolate cake would suit well on Easter table, if you prefer to keep it simple but delicious.

For more Easter dishes check the link: Polish Easter recipes.

Classic Murzynek Polish Chocolate cake served on a plate.
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Forest Moss Spinach Cake

Leśny Mech

Forest Moss Spinach Cake is not a traditional Polish cake, but is something that got very popular in Poland in the past years, so I decided to bake it and show you what are the latest trends in Polish cooking.

Forest Moss Spinach cake is easy and it doesn’t take long to make it, but the result may be spectacular and delicious on the same time:) It would also give a Spring touch on your Easter table!

I used recipe I found on one of the most popular Polish cooking sites: Kwestia Smaku. My favorite!

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Sauerkraut and Mushroom Croquettes

Krokiety z kapustą i grzybami

Sauerkraut and Mushroom Croquettes are one of the staple dishes in Poland for Wigilia. We serve it to Beets Borscht instead of Uszka. If you changed the filling to meat, you can just have it for family dinner as a separate dish or with chicken soup. There is quite a lot of frying involved, so I limit krokiety in my diet to few times a year.

Sauerkraut and Mushroom Croquettes served on the plate
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Orange Christmas Liqueur

Mid November is perfect to think ahead about Christmas. This confirms a fact that in some areas of the world first Christmas decorations are already set! For me it’s to early, but there are some aspects of Christmas that need to be taken care of before. Just like homemade Orange Christmas Liqueur.

I make a lot of tinctures in Summer: cherry, bird cherry, rowan berry, strawberry, black currant and few more. I prefer to call them a tincture than a liqueur. Polish nalewki are to cure: an alcohol is extracting all the beneficial substances from fruits and other tinctures ingredients. Of course they need to be drunk in small amounts. Orange Christmas Liqueur is actually a liqueur not a tincture – not a cure it is just purely to enjoy:) It smells like Christmas:)

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Sauerkraut and Mushrooms Buns

Paszteciki z Kapustą i Grzybami

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.

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Zamojskie Buckwheat Dumplings

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).

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Polish ‘Greek fish’

Ryba po grecku

Nobody knows why fried fish with steam veggies is in Poland called Polish ‘Greek fish’:) It is just a common name, used from decades by our grandmothers and mothers.

Greeks, please do not get offended:) Almost all Poles love it, when we eat Greek fish, we think warmly about Greece and Greeks:)

Try also: Traditional Polish Vegetable Salad.

Polish 'Greek fish' served on Easter
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Beets and horseradish – Ćwikła

In my family house beets and horseradish – Ćwikła is served during Easter and Christmas, it usually goes with home made meats and vegetable salad.

Check more beets’ Polish recipes on: http://cookinpolish.com/tag/beets/.

Beets and horseradish - Ćwikła served on a plate
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Polish vegetable salad

I remember from my childhood that Polish vegetable salad was a must for each Easter, Christmas, birthday and – very popular those times in Poland – name day. In the 80-ties mayonnaise was hard to get in stores, so we used to prepare it at home.

I still can’t imagine Easter with a family without vegetable salad. Polish vegetable salad is nice to have with cold sliced meets and Beets and Horseradish Salad.

Polish vegetable salad served on the table
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Peas and Cabbage Stew

Groch z kapustą

Phrase “peas and cabbage” in Polish common language is defined as mixing two things which do not match. Peas and cabbage stew is not a mess, try:)

Historically in Poland cabbage is one of the most popular vegetables. It is cheap, so it’s available for poor people. Is easy to store during winter, so can be used during the whole year. For years people in Poland use it widely, so we have many traditional dishes with cabbage as ingredient.

Peas and cabbage stew appears on official list of traditional polish cuisine of Łódź voivodeship, but is known in the whole country. Can be prepared as fast dish with fried onion, or with greaves.

Peas and cabbage stew served in a bowl
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Lenten Cabbage with Mushrooms

Kapusta postna

Lenten cabbage with mushrooms is in Poland usually served on Christmas Eve, but it is also popular dish during Lent. Healthy, sour – enjoy!

Lenten cabbage with forest mushrooms served on the plate with rye bread.
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Herring under a blanket/ Śledzie pod pierzynką

This herring salad has few layers of ingredients with herring on the bottom of it, that is why it is usually called Herring under a blanket. This is one of my favorite herring dishes for Christmas Eve and Christmas.

Herring salad in a bowl
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Uszka for Borscht

Small Dumplings with Sauerkraut and Wild Mushrooms

Uszka for Borscht are perfect for Christmas Eve to be served with beets borscht.

If you want to cook borscht with dumplings you need to plan it in advance, check it here: http://cookinpolish.com/beetroot-borscht/.

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Beets Borscht with Uszka

Barszcz z uszkami

Beets Borscht with Uszka is traditionally prepared for Christmas Eve in many Polish homes. As the opposite to borscht sometimes forest mushrooms soup is prepared, but not in my family house- we love beets borscht:)

One important ingredient of Borscht is a beets kvas/ sourdough which you need to prepare few days before. How to prepare a sourdough you can check here: http://cookinpolish.com/beet-sourdough/.

These amounts of ingredients are set for a big family and there will be enough of Borscht for Christmas Eve and the Christmas as well:)

For Christmas Eve we usually have Beets Borscht with Uszka, while for other occasions we have it for example with Sauerkraut and Wild Mushrooms Buns.

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“Russian” dumplings/ Pierogi ruskie

Dumplings are cooked in many East and Central European countries, maybe this is about being Slovian, maybe they are just so tasty and we know how to prepare them:)

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