Things to know before you start.
The key thing I’ve learned in my time as a home cook is that you cannot trust measuring cups. Weighing your ingredients will give you the most accurate measurement every time.
Precise measurements are even more important for less experienced cooks, who aren’t as familiar with the process (and wouldn’t know how to improvise and “save” the dish if something goes haywire).
That’s the reason why I highly recommend using a scale. But if you don’t own one, you can try measuring by volume. Use a dry measuring cup for dry ingredients, and a liquid measuring cup for the wet ones.
It may be difficult to find certain ingredients that are commonly used in Polish recipes if you are outside of Poland. While I make an effort to suggest appropriate substitutes, it’s important to note that these changes may result in a dish that tastes different from the original dish.
Related post: Common Polish Ingredient Substitution Guide
Unfortunately, it’s not always possible to predict the final outcome when using alternatives. Nevertheless, I would like to encourage you to experiment – trust me, it’s fun.
That said, I would like to point out a few ingredients:
Large-grain kosher and sea salts have gained popularity in the US and worldwide. However, they measure differently than table salt. In Polish cooking, standard table salt is typically the preferred salt for recipes, unless otherwise specified.
Personally, I have a fondness for using fresh yeast in my baking attempts. However, I understand that it may be hard to find in certain regions worldwide. Therefore, to make things easier, all recipes have been tested with dry yeast instead.
Broth, stock & bouillon
The store-bought broth is a common shortcut in many kitchens. In Poland – not so much. You won’t find cans or cartons of broth here at all, although there are dehydrated bouillon/stock cubes available.
The majority of broths, stocks and bouillons get cooked from scratch. To save time, I make a large pot of mixed-meat broth every two weeks or so. One part of this immediately turns into soup, while another is refrigerated for later use, and the remaining portion goes into the freezer.
If you’re following a recipe, feel free to use a ready-made broth (stock or bouillon) of your choice. However, it’s worth noting that homemade versions have a richer, denser taste. If you don’t want to miss out on this flavour, I highly recommend cooking your own.
The recipes posted here are not specifically tailored to accommodate any particular diet or dietary restriction. However, there are some recipes that are already suitable for certain diets and are marked as such.
Pots & Pans
All recipes are tested using the following standard pan sizes:
|Loaf pan||9″ x 5″ (8 cups)||23 x 13 cm (1.9 litres)|
|Round cake pan (smaller)||6” (4 cups)||15 cm (950 ml)|
|Round cake pan (larger)||8″ (6 cups)||20 cm (1.4 litres)|
|Pie pan||9″ x 1 ½” tall (6 cups)||23 cm x 4 cm tall (1.4 litres)|
|Bundt pan||10″ x 3” tall (10-cups)||25.5 cm x 7.5 cm tall (2.4 litres)|
|Square cake pan||8″ x 8” x 2” tall (8 cups)||20 x 20 x 5 cm tall (1.9 litres)|
|Rectangular pan||9″ x 13″ (14 cups)||23 x 33 cm (3.3 litres)|
|Cookie sheet||any size||any size|
Personally, I own a set of alloy steel Wilton pans and I’m very pleased with their performance. But if you own a set of bakeware, there’s no need to buy any additional pieces.
To prepare most recipes, you will typically require a stove, oven, and on rare occasions, a microwave. To simplify the cooking process, we recommend using an immersion blender, hand-held mixer, stand mixer or food processor/blender.