A Trip to Poland
When Joan of Foodalogue posted her event that is themed as a virtual culinary trip to a number of countries, my interest was peaked. Joan also planned this event to raise awareness to world hunger and Bloggeraid Although as Joan tells us, economic times stand in the way of us taking the actual journey, nothing stops us from enjoying the culinary adventure right from our own kitchens. Here are the tentative dates and stops along the way.
Poland was screaming at me. My heritage is from Poland and as I sat in my kitchen I could actually visualize what to cook. My mother (baba) often told me stories of pre war Poland and how hard it was to make a living, let alone feed large families.
Kapusta (the Polish word for cabbage), one of the dishes baba makes to this day is a peasant dish that feeds a large family. Meats were so expensive that if my grandmother could find a couple of pieces of chicken to throw into the pot, it made a creative and filling dish. It's also quite delicious meatless.
When we were young, if baba was cooking Kapusta, we all gave her the old stink eye and had to run outside because the mere smell of the cabbage cooking was enough.
This recipe doesn't exactly win a beauty contest but is packed with personality. At first, running the idea of cabbage, chicken, raisins or currants, onions and brown sugar around in my mind would elicit a big "eeeuuuuwwww". Now that I'm almost grown up, I can honestly say the combination grows on you and can become quite addictive.
Here is my tribute to Poland, its culture and its people.
3 Tbsp. olive oil or canola oil
1 medium onion diced
1 medium sized green cabbage - shredded
1 tsp kosher salt
2 or 3 chicken drumsticks or bone in thigh portions
1 tsp. salt
1/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup raisins
1. In large pot, saute diced onion in oil until translucent.
2. Add shredded cabbage,salt and chicken pieces and cook covered on moderate/slow heat until cabbage begins to brown. This is the longest part of the process. Make sure you're stirring from time to time. If the pot begins to go dry, add water by little bits to maintain moisture.
4. Just before the cabbage is looking done, add juice of one lemon and 1/4 cup of brown sugar. This is usually about 20 minutes before serving.
5. Serve with a boiled potato.