Sunday, October 18, 2009

Polish Food Series "Nalesniki'

109. While in the country of Poland we experienced a variety of traditional Pole foods.
In order for each of these wonderful delights to be highlighted and so the fantastic recipes can be shared, a "Polish Food Series" has emerged!

A "Nalesniki" is the Polish version of a Crêpe, thin pancake that is light with a slight elastic texture and filled with a savory or sweet filling.

Here are the four traditional ways of filling and folding Nalesniki:

  • Long Roll: Evenly spread about 1 tablespoon of filling over one-half of pancake leaving bare about one–half inch from the edge; roll from the filled side until you have a long tube.

  • Short Roll: Evenly spread about 1 tablespoon of filling, leaving the outer one inch bare, over the entire pancake. Fold over two unspread edges from opposite sides of the pancake; roll one of the remaining two unspread edges toward the center; then roll up tightly from the unfolded end until you have a small fat tube.

  • Handkerchief Fold: Evenly spread about 1 tablespoon of filling over one-half of pancake, leaving bare about one-half inch from the edge; fold empty half over filled half; then fold once again bringing the two points together. Not particularly well suited for jams or runny fillings.

  • Envelope or Book Fold (Ksiazeczka): Evenly spread about 1 tablespoon of filling over the center of pancake leaving bare about one–half inch from the edge; fold about one-third of pancake over filling; then fold over the opposite one-third; fold ends in, forming a small packet.

We observed a Polish cook preparing these delicious Nalesniki. Our sense of smell led us down the hall, around the corner and into the kitchen where the delicious aroma of these crepes were being made. We asked if we could stay and watch...the cook did not speak English but was tickled to hear our oohs and aahhs.

Nalesniki "Polish Crepe"
3 eggs
¾ cup milk
2 Tblsp sugar
dash of salt
6 to 8 Tblsp flour

Beat eggs. Mix sugar, salt and flour well together and stir quickly into the eggs. Add milk and beat hard.

Have ready one or more heavy six inch crepe pans, lightly buttered and well heated. Pour just enough batter into each to cover the bottom of the pan when it is tilted and swirled. Shake the crepes over the fire until they are slightly browned on the bottom and firm to the touch on top.
Do not turn. Put them aside to cool. This may be done several hours before serving.

She made two traditional fillings, Potato and Cheese and Apple and Cinnamon

Cheese Filling or Potato and Cheese Filling
(Some Polish cooks will use the same filling for their Pierogi as they do for Nalesniki)
1 lb farmers cheese, ricotta cheese or dry curd cottage cheese (your choice)
1 egg
salt and white pepper
½ cup chopped chives or onion
2 Tblsp butter
opt: 2 cups cooked, smashed potato
Filled Nalesniki may be panfried in butter or baked in a buttered casserole dish until the filling is set. Some prefer to dip their nalesniki in beaten egg and then in fine, dry bread crumbs. They are then fried in butter or a small amount of hot oil until golden on all sides.

Apple and Cinnamon Filling
2 large tart apples, peeled, cored and grated
4 Tblsp sugar
½ tsp cinnamon
1tsp fresh lemon juice

1/3 cup butter
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup bread crumbs

Fill crepes and roll up. Place on buttered baking dish and brush well with melted butter. Mix sugar with bread crumbs and butter and sprinkle over top. Bake in 350° F. oven for 20 minutes. Serves four.

"A kind heart is a fountain of gladness, making everything in its vicinity freshen into smiles." ~Washington Irving


Karen said...

You know, I think almost all countries have something like a crepe. These look delicious.
I have to ask you... is York, Maine close to Canada. We lived at Loring AFB in 1971 for about 18 months. We would go to York for the great food and wonderful scenery.
Love your blog!
Ladybug Creek

2sisters said...

These look wonderful! I may have to make them for dinner this week. And now I'm hungry to boot! Loving reading about your trip to Poland. Thanks for stopping by our blog and becoming a follower. Hope you enjoy what you see.


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