12 plates on Christmas (Eve)
Poland Travel Blog› entry 9 of 14 › view all entries
December 23rd, 2009 – by: kamja
12 Plates on Christmas
On the 1th plate on Christmas my mommy made for me: Mushroom soup (Zupa Grzybowa)
- soups, in general, are very popular in Poland. In houses where are grandmothers everyday dinner contains 2 courses, and the soup is always the first coures.
On the 2nd plate on Christmas my mommy made for me: Borscht (Barszcz)
-The basic Polish borscht recipe includes red beetroot, onions, and other vegetables such as carrots and celery or parsnip. The key to a good borscht is a strong taste, don't hesitate to add lots of black pepper. Another key component is acidity. It's a version of Red Borscht, but in Poland there are other types like, traditional for Easter White Borscht, made from fermented rye with addition of mashed potates and Polish thick sausage kiełbasa.
On the 3th plate on Christmas my mommy made for me: Uszka
- let's settle for calling it Polish dumplings ravioli-like. Uszka ("Little Ears", because of the shape) with mushroom filling or sauerkraut, or both depending on the family. During the year there is also an option with minced meat, but as I said before Christmas in a time of lent- so no meat. Uszka can either float in the soup, or be eaten as a side dish.
On the 4th plate on Christmas my mommy made for me: Carp
- tomorrow everyone gets it. At the time I'm writing this entry, probably in every second bathtub in Poland alive carps are waiting for their destiny.
On the 5th plate on Christmas my mommy made for me: Herring (Śledź)
- Oh, there are so many ways of serving herring in Poland. Not only Japanese have sushi. In Poland we also eat raw fish. And by fish I mean mostly herrings. First you put them in some salty water, then after removing some salt, we put it into milk, for a day or so. And add some spices like pepper, pimento a juniper leaf etc. Then rinse the milk and salt and add some onion, garlic or whatever and pour the oil (olive, garlic-what you like).
On the 6th plate on Christmas my mommy made for me: Sauerkraut with mushrooms (Kapusta z grzybami)
- yum. It's basically the easier and meatless version of bigos (more about bigos will be on the first day of Christmas). You add also some prunes.
On the 7th plate on Christmas my mommy made for me: Sauerkraut with peas (Kapusta z grochem)
- less acidity than in the option with mushrooms it's also like heavier in taste.
On the 8th plate on Christmas my mommy made for me: Makiełki
Ok. We don't eat makiełki in my house, but it's a very popular dish in Poznan region and in Silesia. It's a poppy seed-based dessert. And it's eaten almost only during Christmas. The main ingredient are: sweet white bread and finely ground poppy seeds boiled in milk with butter. Other important ingredients include: dried fruit (figs, raisins, apricots, dates, etc.) almonds and other kinds of nuts (the choice of nuts and dried fruit varies). It is flavoured with sugar, honey, vanilla, cinnamon and rum.
On the 9th plate on Christmas my mommy made for me: Kutia
Also not among my family and friend, but in some regions of Poland it's a must-be meal.
On the 10th plate on Christmas my mommy made for me: Pierogi (with mushrooms/sauerkraut/mushrooms and sauerkraut)
-are a dish consisting of boiled or baked dumplings of unleavened dought stuffed with varying ingredients. On Christmas Eve- meatless. In Poland they are always semicircular shape. Besides Christmas Eve there are also versions of pierogi with meat served with chopped pieces of bacon and melted butter, pierogi stuffed with mixed white curd-like cheeseand potatoes- in Poland we call these Rusyn pierogi. There is also a sweet option, with cottage cheese some cinamon, milk and sugar. Also a version with different types of boiled fruits- most common strawberries- knedle. It used to be a peasants dish, but now it's an important part of Polish culture, and everybody like these.
On the 11th plate on Christmas my mommy made for me: Kompot
-God, I hate Kompot. It's one of the miracles of the globalization that now we have juices in Poland. But when I was younger the kompots were almost always served instead of juices, that were hard to buy. It's a punch like light, refreshing drink most often made of dried fruit (raisins, prunes, apricots, etc.) boiled in water with sugar and left to cool and infuse. It's extremely popular in Poland and neighbour countries. In Poland served whole year, especially on the coutryside, where you had a lot of fruits all the time. I hate the consistency of kompots, with some boiled fruits in the dink. Yuck....
On the 12th plate on Christmas my mommy made for me: Gingerbread
- don't have to explain. And it's hard as hell. Difficult to swallow.
Oh look. I manage to remember the 12 dishes. Of course depending on one's family traditions there could be some different stuff served. As I said before in my family we don't prepare makiełki or kutia. So this is what we will be enjoying tomorrow. Obesity! here we come. Check out tomorrow's entry for the Christmas eve's traditions. And if anyone would like to prepare some of these stuff, contact me, will give you a recipe.
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