If you’ve met someone Polish on match then what better way to impress than whipping up your very own Polish feast.
Most people are unfamiliar with the delights of Polish food, however this rich and meaty cuisine is not to be missed.
Traditional dishes are often demanding in preparation, however we’ve found a simple starter, main and dessert which will let you show off your culinary skills and impress your date.
At the end you won’t just have prepared a delicious meal, but you would have shown an interest in your Polish date’s culture and heritage which will earn you even more brownie points.
Starter – Borscht
Borscht is a traditional Polish vegetable soup based primarily on beetroot which makes it a vibrant red colour. It can be served hot or cold, and meat can be added if you prefer.
Ingredients • 6 medium-sized beetroots, scrubbed, stalks removed • 2 tbsp olive oil • 5 spring onions, white part only, sliced • 1.5 litres vegetable or chicken stock • 55ml/2fl oz vodka • ½ lemon, juice only • 1-2 tbsp crème fraîche, plus extra to serve
To serve • Handful chopped fresh dill • Crusty bread
Method Gently fry the spring onions for 5 minutes Add the stock and continue to cook over a low heat until warmed through In a separate saucepan cover the beetroot with water and bring to the boil. Simmer for 25 minutes until the beetroot is tender Drain, cool, and peel and cut the beetroot into rough pieces Blend beetroot, spring onion and stock until smooth Add vodka, lemon juice, crème fraiche and seasoning. Blend again Serve the soup hot or cold with a spoonful of crème fraiche and some fresh crusty bread. Recipe adapted from Sophie Dahl, The Delicious Miss Dahl
Main – Spicy Pork Goulash
We have taken a traditional Polish goulash and given it a bit of a twist inspired from Jamie Oliver.
Although this dish takes a few hours to cook, the preparation time is minimal and once finished it is ready to heat up and serve, so you don’t need to be standing around in the kitchen cooking once your date has arrived.
Ingredients • Boneless Pork Shoulder • 2-3 Red Yellow or Orange Peppers • 1 Onion • Jarred Marinated Sweet Peppers • Can of Tomatoes • Red wine vinegar • Paprika • Caraway Seeds • Oregano
To serve • Sour Cream • Lemon • Parsley
Method Season pork shoulder and sear well in a very hot pan. Set aside and drain off excess fat Add the finely diced onion, a sprig of oregano, two heaped tablespoons of paprika and a teaspoon of crushed caraway seeds. Let the onion soften Add the sliced peppers, a couple of sweet peppers, two tablespoons of red wine vinegar, and a can of tomatoes Add the meat back to the pot and add water as needed to cover the meat, then cover and place in a 350 degree oven for 3 hours until the meat is tender Skim off any fat that has risen to the top and taste sauce to season Serve with a sour cream mixed in with lemon zest and parsley
Dessert – Cheesecake / Caramel Ripple Cheesecake Cups
Cheesecake is one of the most popular desserts in Poland. It is different from your usual cheesecake as it is unbaked with a digestive biscuit base and jelly topping.
This dish is quite complicated to bake, and with the preparation of your starter and dessert we think you deserve a break in the kitchen.
So instead we’ve adapted a classic, and have chosen a really simple recipe for caramel ripple cheesecake cups.
Ingredients • 100g crushed ginger biscuits • 400g soft cheese • 50g golden caster sugar • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract • 6 tbsp. caramel sauce
Method Divide the crushed biscuits between 4 ramekins or small glasses Beat the cheese with the sugar and vanilla and then add 4 tbsp. of the caramel sauce until mostly incorporated Spoon the mixture over the biscuits and smooth the top, and then drizzle the rest of the caramel over the top Set in the fridge for at least 2 hours before serving
For more ideas on how to impress your date head to our Polish Dating Page.