Friday, December 14, 2012

Bigos (Week 50 to 51)

I write this as "week 50 to 51" because I have to make bigos BEFORE I make pirogi (that is coming).  In the Zupanovich-Lucka households, we have a tradition....on your birthday, you get to request what ever the heck you want to eat (so long as it is home made).  For me, I typically want my Dad's BBQ chicken (over vineyard wood), my Mom's pilaf and one of her cakes or pies.  I tried for years to get Mom's lasagna but this is reserved for Gary (darn you!!  hahaha).  My Dad wants his leg of lamb with mostacholli, Dominik wants Stephanie's tri-tip and my husband (the last of the December birthday dudes  wants pirogi stuffed with cabbage, wild mushroom and sausage.  YIKES!! start with bigos since this is what the stuffing is made from
  • 1/2 ounce dried Polish or porcini mushrooms
  • 2 cups of fresh crimini, chopped
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 1 tablespoon bacon drippings or olive oil (bacon drippings is MUCH better)
  • 2 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 big jars of sauerkraut, rinsed well and drained
  • 1/2 pound smoked Polish sausage, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1/2 pound cooked fresh Polish sausage, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 pound leftover boneless meat, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 large can of stewed tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 cup dry red wine, preferably Madeira
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
Hydrate the mushroom and chop   Place bacon drippings in the pan and heat.  Saute the onions and the mushrooms   Put onion mixture in a large Dutch oven or crock pot and add all of the remaining items.  Cook over medium heat for at least an hour.  I personally like to leave it in the crock pot on medium or high for about 6 hours.  I like it well done!!  Serve with hearty bread, a shot of ice cold's a little slice of Poland.


** reserve 2 cups for your pirogi!!

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