A 15lb Gras Carp caught by

Carp family list

Here comes a list of modern and traditional Polish first courses. Under their descriptions you can find some authentic recipes. Going to visit Poland? Would you like to taste some delicious foods not choosing on spec? You are welcome. All Polish foods listed below constitute a typical Polish menu even nowadays. Therefore, while visiting Poland, one will certainly come across many of them. I wish you good luck in exploring Polish tastes and… Smacznego!

Pierogi • Pierogi / Pierogies / Dumplings

in Polish: pierogi, pierożki (diminutive)

The well-known Polish dumplings called pierogi are one of national dishes and for sure one of the best recognizable Polish foods. The popularity of pierogi probably originates from the fact that this Polish food is varied, with quite a few fillings. So we have not only ruskie pierogi (with cheese & potatoes; translation into English is Ruthenian pierogi, 'Russian' is incorrect!) which are well-known in the USA, but, let me be frank with you, they are not the most popular in Poland. In general, we have a whole gamut of tastes ;) For example, there are delicious pierogi with forcemeat, mushroom or cabbage. As a gourmand, I enjoy sweet pierogi with a filling made from a sweet curd cheese or fresh fruit like bilberries or strawberries. more

First two images – pierogi with mushrooms (which does not mean 'white mushroom' from the grocery; rather, some wild but edible species one can find in a forest). Third depicts pierogi with meat lavishly sprinkled with some fried onion, although bacon or pork scratching is more typical.

Bigos • Polish hunter's stew

in Polish: bigos

Bigos, in English language known as the Polish hunter's stew, is one of national and traditional Polish courses. A true touristic 'must eat'. Bigos is a stewed dish made from cabbage as a main ingredient. Fresh cabbage can be used as well as the soured one, called sauerkraut. Hence, more than one kind of bigos exists in the Polish cuisine. Since cooking bigos usually lasts two to four days, the delicious taste of this Polish food is something really original and different compared to what you are used to :) Apart from cabbage, on a list of ingredients you can also find: diced sausage, dried mushrooms, onion, sometimes apple or dried plums and a characteristic unchanging set of spices: bay leaf, grains of black pepper and allspice. White wine is sometimes added, but this is not a rule. Polish first course bigos is usually eaten with bread, only sometimes with potatoes. A slice of a good sausage can be also added. Bigos is also known in the Lithuanian cuisine.

An appearance, color and taste of Polish hunter's stew depends on a kind of cabbage used (fresh or sauerkraut), additions (dried mushrooms, sausage) and probably most profoundly on the time of cooking (few hours to few days).
Photos by Laurel Fan (1) and Wikipedia (2).

Golabki • Polish cabbage rolls in tomato sauce

in Polish: gołąbki

Golabki or stuffed cabbage is one of a traditional food of Central and Eastern Europe. Polish golabki is a cooked knob of forcemeat wrapped up in a leaf of a white cabbage. Important ingredients are: groats (nowadays rice is much more popular), onion and an appropriate blend of spices. Sometimes mushrooms are added to the filling. Also some other variants of the filling exist in the traditional Polish cuisine, e.g. fowl, mutton or even with no meat at all (some vegetable-based golabki, but these are less common). This Polish food is stewed or fried before eating. When laid on plates golabki are poured over with a delicious dense home-made tomato sauce. Polish cabbage rolls are eaten with bread, sometimes with boiled potatoes. In the Czech Republic and Slovakia, stuffed cabbage is called holubce, in Germany the Krautwickel/Kohlrouladen. This great food is also known in Sweden where it is called the Kåldolmar.

by quinn.anya and Kake Pugh

Kotlet schabowy • Polish pork schnitzel

in Polish: as above

Kotlet schabowy is a staple of Polish dinners. This Polish food is just a pork cutlet in a coating, dished up with potatoes (sometimes chips) and vegetables or a stewed shredded white cabbage bed. This is closely related with a schnitzel. The history of Polish kotlet schabowy dates back to the 19th century. The first written recipe attesting its existence can be found in a cookbook from 1860 by Lucyna Cwierczakiewiczowa.

by TastingPoland

Kopytka • Hooves dumplings

Kopytka is a next kind of delicious Polish dumplings. I must admit that I love it. To experience a full magnificence of this Polish first course, it is important to learn how to concoct kopytka properly. In my life I had both poorly made and not so tasty kopytka and perfect one. These are characterized by a delicate taste and softness. Kopytka are served as a separate dish with pork scratching, fried onion, or as a side-dish for sauces (e.g. Polish goulash).

Kopytka with lard and pork scratchings, by TastingPoland.
Source: www.tastingpoland.com
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