Bigos (polish kimchi) with venison

Bigos (polish kimchi) with venison

By
From
Polska
Serves
15
Prep
540 mins
Photographer
Laura Edwards

“The skill of making a genuinely Polish bigos is acquired through practice. It should be made with concentration and with frequent tasting in order to achieve the full harmony of artfully measured out ingredients. Haste and a distracted mind are particularly dangerous.”

‘Old Polish Traditions: In the Kitchen and at the Table’

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
100g dried wild mushrooms
5 tablespoons rapeseed oil
400g pork belly, cubed
400g stewing beef, cubed
1 onion, finely chopped
1.5kg Sauerkraut, drained
2 bay leaves
8-10 allspice berries
1 bottle red wine
400g venison, cubed
150g polish sausage, very small cubes
100g closed cup mushrooms, chopped
150g prunes, pitted
1 tablespoon vegetable bouillon powder
1 tablespoon soy sauce
salt, to taste
black and white pepper, to taste

Method

  1. Day 1: Soak the dried mushrooms in a bowl of warm water for 30 minutes, then drain. Return to the bowl, pour boiling water over them and allow to stand for another 30 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons of the rapeseed oil in a very large pan and fry the pork belly for about 5 minutes, browning evenly. Add the beef and chopped onion and cook for a couple of minutes. Add the sauerkraut, bay leaves, allpsice berries, a glass of wine and enough water to cover the ingredients. Season with black and white pepper. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat. Once the mushrooms have rehydrated, chop them into slithers, add them to the pan with their soaking liquid. Simmer for 2 hours.
  3. The bigos will still be light in colour, but there should be no liquid in the pan. Allow it cool in the fridge overnight, or just allow to stand, covered, in a cool place.
  4. Day 2: Pour 300 ml of wine over the bigos and bring to a boil. When it begins to boil, reduce the heat to its lowest setting. Soak the venison cubes in a glass of the red wine and leave to marinate overnight. Meanwhile, fry the sausage for a few minutes in a tablespoon of oil, or until browned, and add to the bigos. Repeat with the mushrooms. Finally, add the prunes and cook for another 2 hours.
  5. Day 3: Return the bigos to a medium heat and cook for about 2 hours with the remaining wine. When it's evaporated add water every now and again, so it's never dry. After 2 hours add the vegetable bouillon or soy sauce, then taste and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper. Add the venison cubes, along with the wine they have been soaking in, to the bigos with 2 tablespoons of oil and cook for a further 30 minutes.
Tags:
polish
eastern european
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