Bigos is one of those hearty stews that every country seems to have, and consider their national dish. This one is typical of Poland, and uses everyday ingredients such as Sauerkraut (Kapusta) and smoked or unsmoked meat.
Every Polish family seems to have their own way of making Bigos, and after speaking to (and eating with) Polish friends, there was much controversy over the correct way to cook it. This recipe is (roughly) the way my wife does it, and it tastes good to me.
Each type of sauerkraut will taste different, and you will probably find that yours needs rinsing and then draining (perhaps even several times), to take away a little of the sour taste.
Polish Bigos Recipe – Ingredients
- 1.5kg Sauerkraut (roughly cut a couple of times to make shorter strands)
- 500ml Water
- 400g Smoked Sausage
- 1 Onion (sliced into strips, the same size as the saurkraut)
- 1 Bay Leaf
- 1 tsp Allspice
- 2 Slices Smoked Back Bacon
- 3 Tbsp Tomato Puree
Polish Bigos Recipe – Method
- Cut meat (sausage and bacon) into small cubes, and fry in unsalted butter until browned. Add approx 1/3 of the onion in the last couple of minutes (not earlier – it will brown too fast).
- Meanwhile, cook the cabbage in the water with spices for approximately 1 hour with the remainder of the onion, until all is soft
- Add the tomato pureee, sausage, and a pinch of pepper. Stir well and cook for approx 5 minutes.
And to serve…
Enjoy with some nice mashed potato on a cold winters day. Enjoy!