Kulebiak with Cabbage & Mushrooms

  • Kulebiak is the nearest there is in Polish Cookery to a pie or a pasty.
  • It can be made with a yeast dough, a short crust type of pastry or puff pastry.
  • It is very much a large version of   paszteciki – the small savoury pastries,  which I posted in November 2019.
  • Popular fillings include cabbage & mushrooms of various sorts, hard boiled eggs and fish.
  • Many people serve this for Wigilia –  the Christmas Eve meal.
  • Sometimes the several fillings are put in as layers.
  • Here I have made it with a yeast dough with a fresh cabbage and fresh mushroom filling.
  • It is best served hot.
  • *
  • In the early part of the 20th century Auguste Escoffier, the French chef, wrote about this dish and called it Coulibiac.
  • Was this the start of dishes such as Salmon en croute?

Ingredients – Yeast Dough

  • 250g plain flour or a mixture of spelt & plain flour
  • 1 tablespoon of dried yeast
  • 1 teaspoon of granulated sugar
  • 125-150ml of milk
  • 1 egg & 1 yolk
  • 40g butter – melted
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 egg white & water for a glaze

Method – Yeast Dough

  • Put 50g of the flour into a bowl.
  • Add the yeast and sugar.
  • Add enough of the milk to make the mixture as thick as double cream.
  • Leave in a warm place to bubble and froth up.
  • *
  • Place the rest of the flour into a bowl.
  • Add the salt and mix.
  • Lightly beat the whole egg  and the yolk together.
  • Add the egg mixture to the flour.
  • Add the yeast mixture to the flour.
  • Start to mix together using a wooden spoon.
  • Slowly add as much milk as needed.
  • Bring the dough together using your hands until it leaves the side of the bowl.
  • Knead the dough lightly until it is smooth.
  • *
  • Flatten the dough into a rectangle.
  • Slowly pour on the butter and fold over the dough.
  • Keep kneading the buttery dough until it is all incorporated.
  • Knead a little longer until you have a nice glossy ball.
  • Put the dough back into a bowl.
  • Cover with a cloth or a shower cap and leave to rise in a warm place.
  • *
  • Grease a baking tray.
  • Take the pastry and shape into a rough rectangle.
  • Roll out into a large rectangle around a finger width in thickness.
  • Place the cold filling in the centre lengthwise.
  • Fold the two long sides over the filling so the pastry just meets and is not too thick.
  • Fold over the short sides.
  • Turn the roll over so the “seams” are underneath.
  • Place on the baking tray, cover and leave to rise.
  • *
  • Pre-heat the oven to GM4 180 °C.
  • *
  • Lightly beat the egg white with a little water and brush this on the top.
  • Bake in the oven for around 1 hour.
  • *
  • Best served hot – but still good cold
  • Cut into thick slices to serve.

Ingredients – Filling

  • Small head of white cabbage or sweetheart cabbage.
  • 250g of mushrooms
  • 1 large onion
  • 100g of butter
  • 2 or more hard boiled eggs
  • Salt & pepper to taste

 

Method

  • Shred and then chop the cabbage into small pieces.
  • Chop the onion into small pieces.
  • Chop the mushrooms into small pieces.
  • Melt the half the butter in a large deep frying pan.
  • Slowly cook the onions and the cabbage but do not brown.
  • Cover with a lid and let them simmer till they are both soft.
  • Stir occasionally – you might need to add a little hot water.
  • In another pan melt the rest of the butter and fry the mushrooms.
  • Add the mushrooms to the cabbage and onion mixture and mix well.
  • Heat gently together to remove all the excess liquid.
  • Leave to go cold.
  • Rough chop the hard boiled eggs and add them to the mixture.
  • Season to taste.

Notethis might be more filling than you need – you can always freeze what is left 

Served on a vintage Pyrex platter and Royal Doulton – Carnation plates – 1982-98

 

 

Łazanki with Mushrooms

  • I have adapted a recipe for  łazanki with mushrooms from there.
  • I used ready bought flat pasta – tagliatelle.
  • Break up the dry pasta or snip it up at the end.
  • Boil the pasta as per the instructions – do not over cook it.

Ingredients

  • 250g flat pasta (such as tagliatelle) (broken up)
  • 1 onion – diced
  • 250g button mushrooms – sliced
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 125ml soured cream
  • 40g cheese eg Gouda – grated
  • Butter
  • Salt & pepper to taste.

Method

  • Pre-heat the oven to GM5 – 200°C
  • Have ready a large shallow oven proof dish.
  • Mix the egg yolk and the soured cream in a little dish.
  • Cook the pasta as per the instructions – do not over cook.
  • Fry the onion in quite a lot of butter until soft and golden.
  • Add the mushrooms and cook these together.
  • Add the mixture to the drained pasta.
  • Mix well together.
  • Season to taste.
  • Put the mixture in the oven proof dish.
  • Pour the yolk and soured cream mix over the pasta
  • Stir lightly.
  • Scatter the cheese on top of the dish.
  • Bake in the oven for around 10 minutes until the cheese has melted.

 

 

Salmon Spread

  • There are many recipes in my Polish cookery books for a variety of spreads using cooked meat or fish.
  • In Polish this would be called pasta – a paste or a spread.
  • This recipe was given to me by my late cousin who lived near Durham.

Ingredients

  • Small tin of pink salmon
  • 200g of cream cheese or yoghurt cheese
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • *
  • A little soured cream- optional
  • Salt and pepper

Method

  • Drain the salmon from the liquid in the tin.
  • Remove the skin and any bones.
  • Mash the salmon up with a fork.
  • Add the cheese and the lemon juice.
  • Mix it all together to a smooth paste.
  • Add some soured cream to make a softer spread.
  • Season to taste.
  • Put into a bowl to serve or into individual little pots.
  • *
  • Serve with bread, toast or crackers and green salad.
  • Or use as a dip with crudities.

 

Served on an oval plate by Johnson Brothers – Snowhite – 1960-1979

Note

You can use some left over poached fresh salmon instead.

 

Wholemeal Bread

  • Whilst doing some research on old Yorkshire recipes, I came across this one for a wholemeal loaf.
  • I used wholemeal spelt flour.
  • It is so easy and quick to make and the result is wonderful.
  • The original recipe was for a much larger amount – I have cut it down.
  • Milk is used in this recipe and I think this is why it is so good.
  • There is no kneading or shaping.
  • However you have to bake it in a tin.
  • It has a super crunchy crust.

Ingredients

  • 500g wholemeal spelt flour
  • 15g of dried yeast
  • 1 teaspoon of granulated sugar
  • 125ml of lukewarm water
  • 400ml of lukewarm milk
  • ½ teaspoon of salt

Method

  • Mix the yeast and sugar with the lukewarm water.
  • Leave it to start frothing.
  • Put the flour into a large bowl.
  • Make a well in the centre.
  • Stir in the yeast mixture and some of the lukewarm milk.
  • Leave it for 10 minutes.
  • *
  • Beat in more of the milk to give a stiff batter.
  • Add the salt and beat some more.
  • Cover and leave to rise in a warm place for an hour.
  • *
  • Pre-heat oven to GM6 – 200°C.
  • Very well grease a 20 cm diameter baking tin.
  • Using a large spatula put the dough into the tin.
  • Leave for 20 minutes.
  • Bake for 40 – 45 minutes.

 

Lemon Torcik

  • This is such an easy way to make the lemon and cheese mixture.
  • It is adapted from a recipe on a tin of condensed milk.
  • The bottom layer is made from a biscuit base – I have made a chocolate one.
  • You can adapt this base using different biscuits or omitting the chocolate.* see footnote photos
  • I used a little chocolate to decorate the top and this was enough for me.
  • You could add fruit and syrups or many other options.

Ingredients – Biscuit Base

  • 150g of Petit Beurre(morning coffee or similar) biscuits
  • 75g of butter
  • 50g – 75g of dark chocolate

Method

  • Grease a spring-form or loose bottomed tin with melted butter. (Use a 20cm or 22cm diameter tin).
  • Crush the biscuits in a bowl.
  • Melt the butter in a pan over a low heat then add the chocolate and let it melt.
  • Add the butter & chocolate mix to the biscuits and mix them all together.
  • Press the mixture into the base of the tin and leave it to cool completely.
  • Once cool you can put it in the tin and into the fridge for several hours.
  • You can leave this overnight if you wish.

Ingredients – Lemon Cheese

  • 300g of yoghurt cheese or cream cheese
  • 1 tin of condensed milk (397g weight).
  • Juice and fine grated rind of 2 large lemons
  • *
  • Chocolate flake or grated chocolate to decorate.
  • Lemon rind strands from 1 lemon to decorate.

Method

  • If using your own yoghurt cheese, a good idea is to leave it overnight in a large sieve over a bowl to get rid of excess whey.
  • Put the yoghurt cheese, the condensed milk, the juice and rind of the lemons in a big bowl.
  • Whisk the contents together.
  • Spoon the mixture over the base and smooth the top.
  • Leave in the fridge for several hours or overnight.
  • *
  • Put long strands of lemon rind in around a tablespoon of granulated sugar.
  • Leave for around an hour.
  • *
  • Take great care when removing the torcik out of the tin.
  • Use a long thin spatula to ease the edge.
  • Use a tin to place the cake tin on, to move it apart from the base.
  • *
  • Decorate the edges and the centre with chocolate flake and lemon rind.

Served on tea plates by Greenway Hostess by John Russell –  1960-1979

*The following photos are from a version made  without the chocolate in the base and a fluted loose bottomed tin was used.

 

  • Served on Royal Doulton – Counterpoint tea-plates 1973 – 1987
  • Portmeirion Crazy Daisy cake forks by Sophie Conran from 2009.

Placek with Prunes – 2

  • I have an earlier post –  prune placek, which is quite different from this one.
  • This placek – flat cake- has a filling of prunes.
  •  The pastry used is a variation on my Polish  kruche ciasto – shortcrust pastry.
  • Prunes often feature in Wigilia – Christmas Eve dishes.
  • A prune filling like this is used in a tart baked in Belgium and eaten on Ash Wednesday. (17 February in 2021)

Ingredients – Pastry

  • 225g plain flour
  • 110g butter
  • 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 5 tablespoons of water
  • *
  • 1 tablespoon of caster sugar to sprinkle

Ingredients – Filling

  • 300g of prunes – stoned
  • 1 small cinnamon stick
  • 2 sprigs of rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar
  • 1 lemon – grated rind and juice

Method – Filling

This filling needs to be cold – so make this first.

  • Put the prune, cinnamon stick and rosemary in a large bowl.
  • Cover these with boiling water.
  • Leave overnight.
  • *
  • Remove the cinnamon stick and rosemary.
  • Put the prunes and liquid  into a  pan.
  • Add the lemon rind and juice.
  • Heat gently  and stir occasionally until the prunes are soft and the water is adsorbed.
  • Use a stick blender to turn the prunes into a pulp.
  • You might have to heat gently again to make sure the pulp is thick.
  • Leave to go completely cold.

Method – Pastry

  • A rich pastry is made in the traditional rubbed in method with the ingredients listed above.
  • Chill the pastry for around 30 minutes.
  • *
  • Pre-heat the oven to GM 5 – 190°C.
  • Grease and line a shallow tray 21cm x 26cm.
  • Divide the pastry into two.
  • Roll out one piece to line the bottom of the tin.
  • Spread the filling evenly over the pastry – not quite to the edges.
  • Roll the second piece of pastry out and use to cover the filling.
  • Press the edges down to seal.
  • Make some diagonal slashes across the top.
  • Bake for around 30 minutes until golden.
  • Remove from the oven and sprinkle with the caster sugar.
  • Leave to cool in the tin.
  • Cut into squares when cold.

Royal Doulton – Counterpoint tea plates – 1973-1987

Fluffy Potato Pancakes

  • This is a very different pancake to the classic Polish raw grated potato pancake that I love.
  • It is a cross between a potato (krokiet) croquette  and an American style pancake.
  • They are made from boiled starchy potatoes.
  • The recipe below is for an amount to use with one egg.
  • This will make 6 pancakes.
  • I found that any that were left over did not reheat well so it is better just to make them in small amounts.
  • I served these with fried eggs and bacon.
  • Maple syrup also went very well with these.

Ingredients

  • 150g cold boiled starchy potatoes
  • 50g plain flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 5 tablespoons of milk
  • 3 spring onions or chives – chopped fine
  • *
  • Sunflower oil and butter for frying

Method

  • Have plate warming in a low oven.
  • Mash the potatoes till they are smooth.
  • Mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt together.
  • Add the egg and milk and whisk together.
  • Stir in some of the chopped onions – leave a few to add when serving.
  • Heat the oil and butter mixture.
  • Fry large tablespoons of batter gently till golden on both sides.
  • Keep the first batch warm on the plate in the oven.
  • Fry the next batch.
  • *
  • Sprinkle with chopped  spring onions to serve.
  • Serve with fried egg and bacon.
  • Maple syrup is also delicious with these.

 

 

 

Łazanki with Fresh Cabbage

  • I came across a photograph of a dish of  łazanki  with fresh cabbage and decided to have a look at recipes for this.
  • I read that this is a dish very popular in Eastern Poland – strangely enough my mother never made this!
  • Łazanki are a type of Polish pasta often made with buckwheat with the dough being rolled thin and then cut into triangles or rectangles.
  • When the Italian Princess Bona Sforza married the Polish King, Zygmunt I Stary (Zygmunt the Old) in the 16th century, she brought with her many Italian chefs.
  • Łazanki are thought to have originated from that time.
  • The name łazanki comes from the Italian for large flat rectangles of pasta – lasagna(singular) lasagne(plural) – the –ki ending indicates a diminutive in Polish – so these are small and rectangular.
  • I tried out a recipe for wheat łazanki with spelt flour- they were so-so – I bet my babcia (grandmother) made much better ones!
  • I could try using my pierogi dough recipe with wheat flour next time.
  • I tried out a dough for buckwheat łazanki – this was quite reasonable – I might make these again.
  • *
  • Many people now just use ready bought flat pasta such as tagliatelle or pappardelle.
  • Break up the dry pasta or snip it up at the end.
  • Boil the pasta as per the instructions – do not over cook it.

Ingredients

  • 250g flat pasta (such as tagliatelle) (broken up)
  • ½ head  white or sweetheart cabbage – shredded
  • 1 onion – diced
  • 250g Polish kiełbasa (sausage) or smoked bacon – chopped
  • Butter
  • Salt & pepper to taste.

Method

  • Cook the pasta as per the instructions.
  • Steam the cabbage.
  • Fry the onion in quite a bit of butter until soft and golden.
  • Add the Polish kiełbasa (sausage) or smoked bacon.
  • Fry gently.
  • Add the steamed cabbage and stir well.
  • Add the mixture to the drained pasta.
  • Mix well together.
  • Season to taste.

If I have to choose I would say I prefer the dish with bacon.

Carrot Leek & Apple Salad

I was sorting out my recipe box notes and cuttings when I came across this recipe from one of my cousins in Białystok for a salad made from carrots, leeks and apples.

I had not noted down whether the leeks were just sliced or if they were blanched as well so I tried both ways and both salads were super.

Ingredients

  • 2-3 carrots
  • 1 leek
  • 1- 2 eating apples – Braeburns are good
  • Juice of a lemon
  • 2-3 tablespoons of Mayonnaise
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Method – 1

  • Grate the carrots using a coarse grater.
  • Thinly slice the leeks and cut the rings into halve or quarters.
  • Core the apple and chop into small chunks.
  • Pore the lemon juice over the salad.
  • Add the mayonnaise and mix well.
  • Salt and pepper to taste.

 

Method – 2

  • As above except for the leeks.
  • Put the cut leeks into hot water and simmer for a few minutes.
  • Allow the leeks to cool.
  • Drain the leeks and pat dry with kitchen roll or a clean tea towel.
  • Mix all the ingredients together.

Pulpety – Meat & Cheese

  • I came across this version of pulpety  (Polish meatballs) recently and thought I would give these a try as I always have lots of yoghurt cheese.
  • Both beef and pork are used in this recipe and I often do mix these two meat minces together.
  • Dried breadcrumbs are not used in this recipe.
  • The bread is not moistened with milk.
  • The following amounts made 30 pulpety.

Ingredients

  • 200g minced beef
  • 200g minced pork
  • 200g twaróg(curd cheese) or yoghurt cheese (well drained)
  • 2 small onions diced (I might wiz them up in a mini-chopper next time)
  • 2 teaspoons of Italian herbs
  • Fresh white breadcrumbs from a slice of white bread or a roll.
  • 1 egg
  • Salt & pepper
  • *
  • 500ml of chicken stock – can be from a cube or concentrate
  • *
  • 500ml of a sauce of your choice – I used a simple tomato sauce

Method

  • Mix all the ingredients together to a uniform mixture.
  • Hands are best at the end – the mixture is quite sticky.
  • Pinch off small bits of the meat mixture and roll the piece between your hands to make small round balls and place these onto a floured board or tray whilst you make them all.
  • Leave these to chill in a cool place or in the fridge for an hour or so.
  • Pre-heat the oven to GM4-180°C.
  • Heat the chicken stock in a deep wide frying pan.
  • Add some of the pulpety and simmer with a lid for around 5 minutes.
  • Have a large ovenproof dish ready with your sauce.
  • Remove the pulpety with a slotted spoon and add to the sauce.
  • Repeat with the rest of the pulpety.
  • Put a lid on the dish.
  • Cook in the oven for at least 1 hour.
  • You can lower the heat and cook for longer.

Sauces

The varieties here are endless – make one of your favourite sauces for example mushroom or tomato.

You can then serve them with potatoes, pasta, rice or to be very Polish – buckwheat or pearl barley.

 

Served in Royal Doulton – Burgundy – 1959-1981