Szary sos – Grey sauce

  • This is a very old Polish recipe.
  • Szary is translated as grey but it can also mean dusky or dark, which sounds better.
  • Some books call it Polish Sauce.
  • Wine is not a Polish product.
  • I think you could use a sweet vermouth or sherry – will try that next time.
  • Maybe if you do not have any piernik – honey spice cake – you could use plain sponge and some peirnik spices such as cinnamon and cloves.
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  • It is often served with fish such as carp, perch or pike.
  • I think it would go well with roast meats such as chicken or pork.

Ingredients

  • 1 small onion – finely chopped
  • 1 – 2 tablespoons of butter
  • 1 tablespoon of plain flower
  • 50 – 70g piernik (honey spiced cake)
  • 300ml vegetable stock (can use chicken or fish)
  • 125ml red or rose wine
  • 50g sultanas or raisins
  • 20g flaked almonds
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • Sugar & lemon juice to taste
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Method

  • Melt the butter in a medium sauce pan.
  • Add the onion and stir.
  • Cook until they are soft and golden.
  • Add the flour and cook with stirring for a few minutes.
  • Stir in the stock and cook till the liquid thickens.
  • Add the wine and stir and cook again.
  • Break up the piernik into small pieces and add this to the sauce.
  • Cook for a few minutes until the cake falls apart.
  • Add the sultanas and gently simmer for a minute or two.
  • When ready to serve adjust the thickness with a little more wine if needed.
  • Add the lemon juice.
  • Adjust the taste with sugar, lemon juice and seasoning.
  • Pour the sauce over the food.
  • Sprinkle with the flaked almonds.

Almond Cake

  • The almond tree originated in Asia and it is thought that almonds were one of the earliest domesticated fruit trees.
  • Because of traders moving on the Silk Road, almond trees, were established in the Middle East and Mediterranean areas.
  • By 1,000 BC they were grown in Greece and later in Rome, where almonds were referred to as nut Graeca  – Greek nut.
  • By 716AD almond trees were growing in France
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  • Did you know that almonds are not a true nut but the seed part of a stone fruit, a drupe, similar to apricots, peaches and plums?
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  • Almond  is  Prunus amygdalus
  • The English word almond comes from the old French almando.
  • The Italian word is mandorle.
  • The Polish is migdał(singular) migdały (plural).
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  • Although this cake is simple, it is truly delicious.

Ingredients

  • 125g butter
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 3 eggs – separated
  • ½ teaspoon almond essence
  • 75g ground almonds
  • 40g plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • Handful of flaked almonds

Method

  • Pre-heat the oven to GM4 -180°C.
  • Use a cake liner to line a 20 cm diameter cake tin.
  • Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  • Add the egg yolks and almond essence and whisk till fluffy again.
  • Mix the ground almonds, flour and baking powder together.
  • Fold this mixture into the creamed mixture.
  • Whisk the egg whites till they are stiff.
  • Fold the egg whites into the cake mixture.
  • Spoon the cake mixture into the lined cake tin.
  • Smooth the top down.
  • Sprinkle the flaked almonds on the top.
  • Bake for 40 – 45 minutes.