Whilst I was on the #inpoland blog trip with the Polish Tourism Board, we had the chance to try some traditional Polish food. The food in Poland is hearty and filling, so don’t expect to be counting calories here!
Zurek Sour Soup
Meals usually started with a soup, and at Pod Fredra in Wroklaw we were served a traditional Polish soup called ‘Zurek’ which contains smoked sausage, egg and white sausage. What makes it so unique is that it is served inside a bread roll! Zurek is traditionally eaten at Easter, although it can be served at any time of year. The Poles often serve this to guests because of the novel way in which it is served.
Meat and Cabbage
Polish cuisine contains a lot of meat and winter vegetables. One thing I noticed is the Poles really love their cabbage. And as it so happens, I dig it too. Below is a Polish meal of pork meat with roast potatoes and red cabbage.
Zrazy Beef Rolls
Zrazy is another typical food in Poland, which we ate for lunch at the Radisson Blu Hotel in Wroklaw. It’s made from slices of beef, veal or game which are pan fried then stewed, before being rolled up and stuffed with one of the many different types of stuffing.
At Staro Izba tavern in the mountain resort of Zakopane I had the chance to try a Polish cheese called Oscypek,which comes exclusively from the Tatra Mountains region of Poland and is made from salted sheep’s milk. It had a similar rubbery texture to Haloumi. In this case it was cooked and served with cranberry, but our guide told us you can also just eat it cold whilst you are drinking.
Apple cake is a popular dessert in Poland. I had this delicious Polish apple cake at Piwnica Swidnicka restaurant in Wroklaw. It had the fluffiest meringue I’ve ever tasted!
Jewish Food in Poland
On our last night in Krakow, we had dinner at Ariel Jewish restaurant in the Jewish quarter. To start we had fried meat dumplings which are called Pierogi. Our main course was fried carp served with potatoes. Jews first farmed carp in specially managed ponds in Poland, and then it became a traditional Sabbath dish. Jellied carp is the classic Jewish dish, but ours was crumbed and served with a slice of lemon and a lump of butter.
Alcohol in Poland
Polish people drink a lot of vodka, and it is quite normal to order a bottle of vodka for the table, then drink shots until the bottle is empty. It actually tastes quite good and they say if you don’t mix it with anything else, you shouldn’t get a hangover the next day! (Not quite sure about that one!)
Another kind of shot they love is the ‘Mad Dog’ shot, which is vodka with raspberry syrup and tabasco! An interesting flavour…
In Poland they also serve lots of different beers, including wheat beer, dark beer, honey beer and chocolate beer. When they serve you your beer, they’ll also give you a small sandwich filled with lard! You get these sandwiches every time you order your drink, but if lard isn’t your thing, you don’t have to eat it!