Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Polish vegetable salad...

This is a traditional, very creamy, potato-vegetable salad, which can be found on almost all Polish tables - in Poland and abroad. I remember preparing it with my parents when I was only few years old. Sitting behind the kitchen table, peeling the boiled eggs, dicing all the vegetables (yes, I could do than when I was few years old, but my knife wasn't too sharp, just in case ;) ). The biggest "treat" and privilege was to be able to mix it all. Once all the diced veges and eggs were in the bowl, to be able to stir it all gently with a big wooden spoon. My Dad would be adding mustard, salt and pepper and I would be stirring, nice and easy. Then a big "blop" of mayo would follow and the veges would become sticky, and the job of stirring it carefully would be more and more difficult.
My Dad would usually reserve a small piece of carrot and cut some kind of shapes out of it to place it on top of the salad, a small bit of decoration, especially if the salad was being made for a family gathering, some kind of party or Holidays.

I can't imagine my Christmas or Easter celebrations without this simple salad, it might be simple but its taste holds so many cherished memories for me, so many happy moments and a true taste of my family home. I've just made one for Christmas...

Polish vegetable salad

There are many variations of this salad, probably as many as the amount of Polish families around the world ;) Some will add a tin of green peas (drained of course) or a tin of sweetcorn or some kind of beans. I like mine as per the recipe below, though my Dad will always add green peas.
The secret to a good Polish salad is to have everything finely diced, not bigger than a size of a green pea.


How to make it...
Ingredients:
- 2 big carrots
- 2 parsnips
- 1 large gold onion
- 2 large potatoes
- 1 celery
- 3 hard boiled eggs
- 1 large pickeld cucumber
- 1 apple, peeled and cored
- small jar of mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon mustard
- salt and pepper to taste

Cook the carrots, celery, potatoes and parsnips till tender, but not too soft, as they'll turn into a mash in your salad. Cool the vegetables and dice all the ingredients. Put everything into a big salad bowl, season to taste with salt, pepper and mustard. Add the mayonnaise - just enough to 'glue' everything together, or you can add more if you want to. Mix well, but be gentle with it, or you'll make mash ouf of everything. Keep the salad in the fridge. It is the best on the next day - great with some ham sandwich or just all alone...


Smacznego!


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