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A report on certain Polish eating habits

HibbardC 1 | 1  
3 May 2008 /  #1
I actually just have a few questions that I am hoping someone (or a few people) would be able to answer. My girlfriend has to do a report on certain Polish eating habits and as of now has been unable to loacate the information she needs. If someone could answer these questions, it would be much appreciated!

What meals are typically eaten throughout the day (breakfast, brunch, lunch, dinner, supper etc.)?

Who generally makes the meals? Just one individual? Are the duties shared (Husband cooks dinner and wife cooks supper)?

Approximately what time of the day is each meal made (Breakfast at 7AM, Dinner at 7PM etc.)?

What type of food items are typical for each meal?

As I am not 100% sure on all of the information she needs, any other information that is related or you feel may be helpful, feel free to add it in. I greatly appreciate any help that you may give, Thank You!
3 May 2008 /  #2
Who generally makes the meals?

McDonald's :D
OP HibbardC 1 | 1  
3 May 2008 /  #3
HAHA I like that answer!! Im not sure my girlfriends Professor would approve however?!?! Hmmm?
3 May 2008 /  #4
for breakfast people usually eat sandwiches either sweet(jam, nutella etc) or with ham or cheese, then for lunch people usually eat something hot like a soup or potatoes/rice with some meat and salad and for dinner if they don't go out and eat something warm again then there are sandwiches again, similar to breakfast, or some people order a pizza or other junk food. it depends who prepares the meals, i guess it depends on the mood or the family or the fact who is less tired... in some houses there is always a woman who does it and in some there is almost always a man, so no rule here, but in most houses i guess it's a woman's job... breakfast is between 7-9, depends what time one gets up for work, lunch between 1-4 pm, again depends what time one finishes work/school and dinner between 6-8 or even later. oh well, that's about it... that keeps us looking slim ;-) i guess
grethomory 1 | 155  
21 May 2008 /  #5
I don't know what they eat, but I know they sure do not get fat like Americans. I am constantly having to watch my weight.
21 May 2008 /  #6
don't forget that the Polish people 'mlaskają' while eating.... it's awesome ;P
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
22 May 2008 /  #7
There has also been talk of pre-lunch and pre-supper semi-official 'meals'. When I called it snacking to my girl, she got a little offended. It's not gorging on the nearest snack, more warming up ur stomach she said. Hmm...claptrap or not?
mafketis 35 | 10,663  
22 May 2008 /  #8
This is maybe dated and idealized but it gives an idea.

Working days :

breakfast : bread and/or rolls, cold cuts, cheese, maybe tomatoes or jam people don't cook much for breakfast beyond maybe boiled sausage, eggs (scrambled or soft boiled) or the dreaded milk soup (zupa mleczna - rice or some other grain boiled with milk) served with tea and/or coffee

second breakfast : sandwiches eaten at work, more of a snack than a meal

dinner (when everybody's home): usually a soup followed by a meat course with (usually) boiled potatoes and a vegetable dish.

supper : if some member of the family has dinner elsewhere they may have a light supper at home, which is often indistinguishable from breakfast (but no milk soup - hurrah!)

free days:
breakfast - like work days but maybe bigger

dinner - early afternoon (like work days but may be more elaborate and require more preparation), one distinctive thing about Polish dinner is that traditionally there's nothing to drink. That was weird for me early on, but I'm used to it now. On special occasions there may be something to drink, esp wine or beer.

supper - in the evening, a lot like breakfast (probably no coffee though), or maybe a one dish meal.

Also dessert isn't eaten directly after the meal. IME cakes are served with coffee sometime between dinner and supper. Typically you eat the cake with the spoon you stir your coffee with.

As to why Polish people are mostly not (Very) fat. I think there are three reasons:

1. activity levels are higher, people walk a lot more

2. portion control (on all except the most festive occasions Polish people typically have one plate, maybe a small second helping and that's it.

3. low levels of between meal snacking. Traditionally Polish people eat three or four meals a day but hardly anything inbetween. The youngest generation is more used to snacking between meals and you see a lot more fat kids than you used to.
DaveInCal - | 23  
22 May 2008 /  #9
I hardly ever snack. It just makes me feel more hungry.
22 May 2008 /  #10
id say its the best description of polish meal so far. I really do miss polish way of eating and it was hard for me to switch to irish, specially to no breakfast (or big fry up YUK!) and then big lunch and huge dinner. id rather have a proper breakfast (hardly ever have time before work thou) and then no food until supper.

milk soup is actually not that bad, its like eating cereal in the morning, but with hot milk. the only difference is that we have boiled rice or small pasta with hot milk... brings back memories from childhood ;) also in the times when corn flakes where hard to buy we would have chunks of stale bread with hot milk and sugar, i used to love it. but it must be polish sour dough bread, it doesnt work with irish bread! ive tried and it was awful, not mentioning the fact that it all came out as a big slop, coz the bread fell apart.

sorry forgot to mention which description was the best... mafketis' of course
Danziger - | 5  
23 May 2008 /  #11
Who generally makes the meals? Just one individual? Are the duties shared (Husband cooks dinner and wife cooks supper)?

Most common is that women are making dinners and breakfasts, suppers are often made by men. There is also such custom us 'cook doesn't wash up dishes' - so men also usually do this. During weekends men are making also breakfasts, and there is no problem with after dinner dishes as we usually eat at parents places.

Of course it isn't a 'must be', it differs in each house.

What type of food items are typical for each meal?

Personally I:
*breakfast: white bread, ham, tomato, cucumber, white cheese, "Philadelphia" style cheese ("Ostrowia" 10x better ;), juice

*second breakfast (in work): sandwich made earlier in home,

*dinner: piece of meat (chicken, beef) or fish (salmon), some vegetables (carrots, French bean, pea) and sometimes potatoes or rice, or pasta.

*supper: like breakfast

PS. Milk soup is awful, only cereals!
mafketis 35 | 10,663  
23 May 2008 /  #12
IME women do the bulk of the cooking. And (circumstances allowing) it's often an older female relative (if the wife works).

Male meal preparation is more for things like breakfast where there might not be cooking at all (besides boiling water for coffee and/or tea) but setting the table and setting out the ingredients (then each person makes their own open faced sandwiches from what's available). Often male cooking is limited to specialities that they make on a regular basis.

Also ingredients tend to be different from the US. The idea of buying prepared foods is not appealing to most Polish people and there's not as many prepared foods to buy. the idea of heating up dinner in a microwave is kind of yucky. Part of Polish food rituals are about appreciating the effort and care that the cook put into making the meal. On the whole, it's the personal touch that Polish people like.

This is one reason that Polish cooking also tends to be conservative. There's not much in the way of food fads here. Cooking does change over time, but given the choice, at home Polish people prefer the tried and true over experimentation.

I like oatmeal, but zupa mleczna is usually not made from oats and whatever grain is used it's too thin for my taste.
KatieKasia 3 | 39  
25 May 2008 /  #13
I dont know much because i have only lived here a few weeks but i live with poles and am intergrated into a polish family and it seems to be like:

Breakfast (for normal people) in the morning; cold meats, fish (smoked salmon, pickled herring etc) bread, maby some cheese. around 9-10, or for me, whenever i get up.

Lunch is a more basic affair, maby leftovers from whatever was made the night before, soup, meat and potatoes etc about 12-1 oclock.

'dinner' my (polish) boyfriend points out is the main meal of the day and is sortof 5 o'cock, thats early by british standars and its the main meal. Something like gowmki (pigdeons, i cant spell it po polsku) beef stroganof, chops etc. normaly a meat dish with some carbohydrates and some vegitables or salad.

'supper' being similar to breakfast about 10-12pm (whenever we get back from the bars) just cold stuff from the fridge, bread, spreads, cheese etc. Yummy all round. wit beer and/or wine.

In my experiance his parents also snack on cake and sweet stuff al day washed down with tea/coffee...there quite elderly though and do not much elce but cook and eat.

So thats what i know!

sylviagarcia - | 11  
25 May 2008 /  #14
i tried milk soup already - it was with pasta. my boyfriend made it for me. it was alright really but definitely nothing gastronomically spectacular. for people who love to drink milk since they were toddlers, this should be fine =)

for breakfast, we usually have sandwiches. so that's bread, a lot of butter, majonez, ser/cheese (edamski. yum!), mustard, some tomatoes and lettuce. the sandwiches either goes with a cold cut or sausages are eaten separately, like kabanos (yum!) for lunch, it's usually meat/chicken/fish with tomato sauce and potatoes/bread, e.g. pulpety (meatballs with tomato sauce). for supper, it is similar to lunch but something much lighter or you might opt for just soup and bread. tip, you should never run out of bread, butter and kielbasa at home.

with regard to who does what at home, i think that would totally depend on what your partner grew up with (culture), your partner's occupation and personality. my boyfriend's a chef so he does not really mind cooking for me but i try and do most of it because he usually comes home exhausted. both his parents can cook but i assume that his mum is in charge of cooking because his dad's always on call.
27 May 2008 /  #15
Fantastic, guys! You've done a fantastic job. I am a Pole myself and I could never describe our eating habits better. What I loved best in the above was that we, Poles, love the personal touch and we prefer preapring food at home rather than eat out or buy ready-to-eat foods. That couldn't be more precise. You have made no mistakes, contrary to what I can read in Wikipedia:)

One thing only - we love soups. They are not only starters as served in restaurants. Sometimes, esp in poorer families it's the basics, the only dinner course, but believe me, after one bowl of my Mom's vegetable soup I am full and refuse any helping! Besides, Polish soups often contain "wkładka" (insert) which is any kind of meat that the soup was boiled on. Krupnik and żurek are the best, these are thorougly elaborated on by Wikipedia!

personally, I am a good cook and I love all cuisines of the world, but Polish food appeals to me the most.
If anybody's interested in Polish recipes, I'll be delighted to give details or exchange them as I collect recipes from all over the world.

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