I am going to start the journey through the Polish regional cuisine from my native region – Malopolska.
This region is rich in flavours and it has formed my culinary tastes. My family lives both in the mountain villages and in Krakow. This way I know both simple rural cuisine rich in natural flavours and refined cuisine from Krakow.
The Malopolska cuisine developed for centuries but it obtained its final shape in the nineteenth century.
Krakow, as the capital, was the place where various culinary innovations arrived.
They quickly penetrated traditional recipes. Jewish and Viennese cuisine had huge influence on the Malopolska cuisine. In the past the Malopolska cuisine was known as the Galician cuisine and it was based on rich culinary traditions of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire.
It can be seen quite clearly in the names of certain dishes, such as Viennese eggs, Viennese schnitzel or Viennese cheesecake.
Austrian influence can be also spotted in pastry shops which invariably offer two Viennese specialities: Sachertorte and Piszinger. Semolina with nuts and raisins is a typical dessert from Krakow. This was reportedly one of the favourite delicacies of Queen Anne Jagiellon.
One should also mention buchtach, yeast dough filled with plum jam, which is another typical Malopolska cake.
The most characteristic type of bread from Krakow are pretzels and bagels. Now you can buy it on every street from street vendors. They are a symbol of Krakow.
Małopolska may also boast of many other kinds of bread. I will only mention rolls called sztangielki or oatmeal buns called bośniaczki. ,Both have clearly perceptible aroma of cumin, so characteristic of the Galician cuisine.
Cumin can also be found in marinades, sauces and soups. It is very popular specie in the Malopolska cuisine. Maczanka krakowska and cumin soup are very popular dishes with cumin.
Dry sausage from Krakow is a regional product which is also appreciated by other Europeans . Traditionally it is made from the finest pieces of pork. Next it is smoked and then stored for a long time, maturing to gain its characteristic taste and aroma.
Rural cuisine of this region is rich in apples, plums, mushrooms and beetroot taste. The Maloposka region is very diverse geographically and culinary. Every part has its own typical dishes and taste. The Podhlanska cuisine is the most popular in Poland. This is cuisine of highlanders living in the highest Polish mountains, namely the Tatra mountains.
I will tell you about the most interesting flavours and dishes from Małopolska in the next posts.