Prep 20 mins
Cook 3 hrs
Hearty Heart warming comfort food. Serve with good rye bread. The secret of Bigos is that it gets better as it's reheated. The more it heated the better it gets. I like cooking it most the day.This is a great make ahead meal. I posted this recipe using all pork but go ahead and add venison, veal, beef.... I also do add juniper which I love! Then throw in fresh Parsley and marjoram.
- 4 lbs sauerkraut, rinsed
- 1 cup apple juice
- 1 lb smoked pork butt
- 1 lb spareribs
- 1⁄4 lb bacon
- 1 (28 ounce) can tomatoes
- 2 cups water
- 2 bay leaves
- black pepper, lots
- 4 lbs heads of cabbage
- 1 lb pork loin chops or 1 lb country-style pork ribs
- 1 lb smoked kielbasa
- 1⁄2 cup onion (chopped)
- 16 ounces fresh mushrooms
- 1 ounce mushroom (dried)
- 2 tablespoons flour
- Brown pork and spareribs in a large heavy pot.
- Add smoked butt with 1 cup of water and simmer for 1 hour.
- Add the sauerkraut and one cup apple juice.
- Chop the cabbage fine and add to sauerkraut.
- Add lots of pepper and salt cover and simmer 1 hour.
- Remove lid and keep pot on a very low simmer.
- In a pan, fry bacon until crisp, then crumble into sauerkraut mixture.
- Remove most of the bacon fat and fry onions and mushrooms and flour until they just brown.
- Mix into sauerkraut mixture.
- Cut kielbasa into slices add to sauerkraut mixture with the tomatoes.
- Bring to a boil, simmer 30 minutes and serve hot with rye bread and mashed potatoes.
This is the third year in a row I've used this recipe (kind of). I try to follow the tradition of using up what's in the freezer to make room for the new harvest. This year, all the meat with the exception of kielbasa and bacon was harvested by me or the next-door neighbor. Turkey I raised, some garden-eating rabbits I harvested and crawdads I caught along with some doves my neighbor harvested. I also made the sauerkraut myself. This recipe is great place to start and expand from there.
Polish bigos uses mushrooms, but they have to be wild forest mushrooms,could be dried but not champignons and the sausage on the picture is way too big (or wide).It should be less than inch in diameter.Now ,I just got msg from Rita ,that the pix wasn't her and that it is hard to find dried wild forest mushrooms outside of Poland and i agree :) So i raise my rating to five stars for brave Rita,trying to make perfect dish under not perfect circumstances:)
A taste of home during the holidays. Priceless. Thank you so much for sharing this outstanding recipe. I totally agree with another reviewer that it is impossible to just have one serving.