Monday, December 31, 2007

Everything What's Polish

Polish Club
19 Carrington Drive
Albion




The Polish Club in suburban Albion is located just off the Western Highway, tucked at the end of a small street in an otherwise pretty industrialised area. For ages, we'd been meaning to take my grandpa out for lunch to enjoy some old-school Polish fare, but since he was baled up with a monster head cold, we reluctantly ventured off without him. The club itself is distinctly Polish, with the characteristic eagle symbol emblazoned on its very '70s diagonal pine walls, the monument to our Pope John Paul II outside the entrance, and the various soccer-related memorabilia gracing the club's foyer.


It was probably a blessing and a curse to show up on a sweltering New Year's Eve, since the ladies in the kitchen were pretty distracted with preparations for the evening's New Year's bash. Fortunately though, the only other patrons were sitting around playing cards, over a few beers. The menu itself is basic, including traditional old-fashioned favourites, many of which I remember my grandma making when I was much younger, and when she was still up to pottering around in the kitchen. You can find the likes of borscht (beetroot soup), rosol (chicken broth - best enjoyed in winter or even when all you want is some comfort food), flaki (tripe), pierogi (much like dumplings, either filled with fruit, or alternatively mince and cabbage), kopitkami (similar to potato gnocchi), kapusta (softened, mushy cabbage often with bacon and onion thrown in) and knedle (kind of like pork buns, but filled with plain mince instead).

The servings are very generous - which probably accounted for why the lady who took our order raised her eyebrows when we placed it. Between us, we shared the pierogi (drizzled with bacon bits and oil)....


....knedle paired with kapusta (the knedle are perhaps a little smaller than the average burger bun, and the kapusta was mysteriously sweeter than I've previously known it to be)...


....and kopitkami with goulash sauce...these little guys are so soft you can literally suck them off the fork and down them in a single gulp, much like with oysters...


The sweet treats on offer today included makowiec (poppy seed cake), apple and cinnamon crumble, and some hefty doughnuts (filled with plum jam, which for some reason is the doughnut-filling-of-choice in the old country), the latter of which we brought home...


...to wash down with some beer...


Good fun!

5 comments:

  1. Ohhh Yossarian! Those dumplings are divinely hawt!!! Yum if there's any one culinary morsel that transcends cultures its gotta be the humble dumpling. You can stuff them with meat, seafood, potatoes, veggies, you can fry them, boil them, steam them....ahhhh bliss!!!! Only thing is i feel a little bad for the poor little guys. they can't help being so delicious.

    The UN has designated 2008 as the year of the spud. I nominate 2009 for dumplings ;-D

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  2. I agree with Serenity- I'll vote for the dumpling- it could be more exciting than any other election! ;)

    Those pics look great and my sweet tooth just aches to taste the donut with plum jam yum!!! :)

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  3. Gotta recommend a cool foodie shop for those craving a taste of Eastern Europe:

    Russian Tidbits
    119 Koornang Rd
    Carneggie.

    The service is Soviet, i.e. gruff and defiant to the point of rudeness, and they will address you in Russian by default, but the selection is fab. We went for home made Pelmeni (a bit like those dumplings!) in chicken, and combo pork/beef; kvass (a 'soft drink' made from fermented malt - so take the 'non alcoholic' label with a grain of the old salty stuff); ogorkie (yummy picked cucumbers - they also sell picked tomoatoes, mushrooms, peppers etc.); sushki (hard sweet bready donut things for dipping in hot black tea); ikra (high grade russian caviar); piles of Lvovska and Moskovskaya (traditional salamis); and delicious fresh rye bread in black and white varieties. This is not the limit of their delicious offerings, and they also stock a wide range of polish pickles, meats and sweets, so check them out!

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  4. Those doughuts look suspiciously like the ones you get from the Polish Deli at the Vic Market.

    They are ever so good, especially given a few seconds in the microwave.

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  5. A very delectable looking selection... I can't believe you managed to get some hot tucker down in 40 degree heat! Plum jam doughnuts... mmmm. How does the Polish beer stack up?

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