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What is the typical expat diet while living in Poland?


Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
19 May 2015 #1
What does the typcial expat eat while in Poland -- bangers & mash, fish & chips, shepherd's pie, lamb chops with mint sauce...or the local Polish fare?
Harry
19 May 2015 #2
What does the typcial expat eat while in Poland

There aren't many expats in Poland anymore, most of us foreigners here are immigrants (although some of us would more properly be called migrants, as we aren't subject to immigration control). And I doubt that there is a typical diet for immigrants/migrants, for example I doubt that your diet has much in common with mine, despite me being a migrant and you being an immigrant.

Now that I think about it, the largest group of expats (or more properly the least small group) would almost certainly be Koreans, so I guess the most typical expat diet would feature a lot of Korean food.
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
19 May 2015 #3
But there's certainly no lack of them on PF. What would the typical Brit expat eat on a daily basis? Polish or British fare or some of both with some trendy exotica (sushi, curry, etc.) thrown in?
Harry
19 May 2015 #4
What would the typical Brit expat eat on a daily basis?

I can't say I know any. All the Brits I know in Poland are migrants. If you really want to know, go to Legends on Emilii Plater: there are so many Brits who go there that there must be one or two expats (I'm pretty sure a couple of the British embassy staff go there, and those are frankly the only British expats I can even think of; perhaps a call to the cafeteria at the British embassy might give you the info you want).
Gosc123456
19 May 2015 #5
International western food only.

The only Polish foods I can eat: antrykot, kotlet volaj (the way Polish spell those French words amaze me...) and sekacz cake
Levi_BR 6 | 219
19 May 2015 #6
Polish Food is delicious. By far one of the best European cuisine outside the mediterranean ones.

I love Pierogi, sweet or salty pierogi, doesnt matter, Zapiekanki, those things made with cheese and also those sweets (mleczo?), Kielbasa, all the pork stuff, that soup made with beetroot is also incredible. Also those ginger breads (we don't have this in Latin America) are a sugar bomb but pretty good.

Not even talking about all the insanely good drinks. Even Advocaat i like, at the beginning was strange the idea of drink an alcoholic egg, but it is freaking good.

The only thing that i still not perfectly adapted is the fermented cabbage, still taste strange for me.
Kamaz
19 May 2015 #7
Been here 5 years......I eat mostly meat, live in a village so buy the odd pig now and then ( that's a whole pig) but not the sausages. Eat at places like Sphinx restaurant and they always do good steak. McDonalds never gives me problems and neither do KFC, also some Thai fast foods I,m Ok on. If I eat bought Pierogi I am fine, if it is at the house of a local villager I get the trots within minutes (do they wash their hands when making the pierogi??) so I have declined to eat at local houses for the last 4 years, drink coffee instead. Yesterday I cooked steak bought at Biedronka and the day before, cooked slowly in butter with chives.....side dish of mushrooms,onions and tomatoes, again steamed in butter.....we get given so much butter we have to use it instead of cooking oil or we get a fridge full. For breakfast I have cornflakes (nestle) with smietanka (cream)....oh and our chickens give 16 eggs per day, we sell as many as we can, but have omelette once week.....with chopped bacon and cheese. The Good Life.
jon357 63 | 15,053
20 May 2015 #8
I don't know any expats these days, except for a few French people here with their jobs, however worth mentioning that most expats are male and don't tend to cook much. Those who are their without wives doubtless eat a fairly local diet or whatever their girlfriend etc cooks for them.
Atch 17 | 3,232
20 May 2015 #9
Polonius, I don't think curry is considered very exotic by Brits these days. There have been curry recipes in British cookery books for well over two hundred years and Indian restaurants for about as long as that. Brits don't generally live on a diet of shepherd's pie and fish and chips anymore. Most people eat a mixture of traditional British stuff and international. It's very common for people to whip up a a quick Thai green curry at home or basic Italian dishes for example. As for lamb chops, in the two years I lived in Warsaw I can't remember ever seeing lamb in the supermarket. I think I may have seen some weird looking frozen stuff once. Since then I've only been back for holidays but I have actually seen teeny, weeny little things that look like they came off a rack of lamb, about two bites in each. Most depressing!
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
20 May 2015 #10
You can have your tumeric-tainted curry dishes. I'll eat most anything (I even once tried chocolate-covered ants -- actually a nice and crunchy sweet!), but tumeric (curry's main flavouring ingredient) is the one thing I cannot stomach. Now italian is a different story alltogether. It is probably the world's best cuisine, second only to our beloved Polish cookery!
Atch 17 | 3,232
20 May 2015 #11
Hi Polonius. Authentic Indian recipes contain very little turmeric. I don't like it myself, but I use a little in rice to give it that nice yellow colour, much cheaper than saffron. I love Indian food and the variety is so vast, not just curries. Favourite Polish food would be golonki but I roast them in the oven, gołąbki, rosół, pasztet z śliwką, pączki, never touch kiełbasa. My Polish husband loves Indian food, Chinese, traditional British Sunday roast and fish and chips. He tries to avoid all the wędliny because of the salt and generally eats chicken, beef and fish. Like all good Poles he loves anything pickled! Oh and soups, homemade of course. Luckily I enjoy cooking!
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
20 May 2015 #12
The Old Polish cuisine of the upper szlachta was quite into spices whose use or overuse were once a sign of affluence. "Pieprzno i szafranno, mościa waćpanno" (peppery and saffrony, my dear maiden) was a well-known saying of that day. One of my favourite Old Polish dishes is roast pork loin with prunes and saffron rice on the side. Only the tiniest pinch of bright-red saffron gives the rice a golden tinge and subtle fragrance.
Atch 17 | 3,232
20 May 2015 #13
Yes, I know Poles love their spices. There was a funny incident not long after we arrived in Poland. It was a bitterly cold winter and an elderly neigbour of ours called round and gave us a little parcel of goodies including some packs of spices and a couple of bottles of piwo. I was cooking liver that day and for some reason I assumed I was supposed to sprinkle the spices on in the same way as you might with kotlety. I thought it was a bit odd but who knows the ways of Poles! So we sit down to dinner and husband asks 'do you mind me asking, what did you put in the liver?' The spices that Dziadek brought' 'Oh Boźe jedene' responds husband, 'the spices are for putting in our warm beer'.
Harry
20 May 2015 #14
I don't know any expats these days

I'd say the species is nearly extinct in Warsaw now, just immigrants and migrants left really.

trendy exotica (sushi, curry

Sushi was trendy about 15 years ago. Now the trendiest food is the burger. Personally I'm not American, so I can't really say which burger in Warsaw is the most authentic; perhaps you could tell us, as the food is from your neck of the woods.

Curry is getting more commonplace but certainly isn't trendy. I'm told that the next trendy food will be hummus, or hot-dogs, it depends who you ask.

steak bought at Biedronka

Got to say that I'm a big fan of those, especially the 21-day aged steaks.
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
20 May 2015 #15
DICTIONARY DEFINITIONS:

EXPAT: An expatriate (often shortened to expat) is a person temporarily or permanently residing in a country other than that of their citizenship.

MIGRANT: Someone who moves from place to place, especially who leaves his own country and settles in another; a farm worker who moves from place to palce to harvest seasonal crops.

IMMIGRANT: Someone who leaves his own country and moves to another.

NOTE: The difference between migrant and immigrant seems a bid blurred. I wonder how Harry distinguishes the two.
Hardly any expats in Poland?! What about the hordes of Anglos from the UK, States, Canada and Oz who have flocked to Poland to cash in on the demand for English teachers?
jon357 63 | 15,053
20 May 2015 #16
Got to say that I'm a big fan of those, especially the 21-day aged steaks.

I've had mixed experiences with steaks from there. I do like their salad stuff, fresh watercress which is popular and traditional in Poland (though they don't make soup with it much) and Rukola which is very popular in PL now.

The frozen seafood at Biedronka is good value.
Harry
20 May 2015 #17
I do like their salad stuff, fresh watercress which is popular and traditional in Poland

Got to say that I agree with you there. The spinach at Biedronka is also good, although I'm not sure how traditional it is in Poland or how typical it is for the few expats who now live here.

The frozen seafood at Biedronka is good value.

A good friend of mine got an entire octopus there last week for 27zl; although he's not an expat and I doubt octopus is a significant part of the expat diet.

EXPAT: An expatriate (often shortened to expat) is a person temporarily or permanently residing in a country other than that of their citizenship.

If that is the correct definition, that would make both you and me expats. I certainly do not see myself as an expat (although I was when I first came to Poland) and would never put forward that definition (I'm just a migrant now, although I was an immigrant for a while). However, given that by your own definition you are an expat, perhaps you could tell us about your diet and your thoughts about how typical it is for your fellow expats?

What about the hordes of Anglos from the UK, States, Canada and Oz who have flocked to Poland to cash in on the demand for English teachers?

I suppose there are a couple of expats at the American school of Warsaw. But nowadays the British schools recruit locally, so they employ migrants (although I suppose there might be one or two expats at the British Council, almost certainly in non-teaching roles).
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
20 May 2015 #18
Very confusing? What then in your view is the difference between a migrant and immigrant? Wiki is also not very clear on that.
In America if you called yourself a migrant people might ask ¿Hablas español? or what crop are you now harvesting -- beans or strawberries? Migrants are mainly viewed in terms of itinerant Mexican fruit and vegetable pickers.

More food......less immigrant/migrant/expat

What are 29-day-aged steaks, what cut of beef is it, where are they sold and for how much? I have never had a good steak in Poland so I avoid them like the plague. Most supermarket steaks are from old cows whose udders have dried up. Its good for mince but not much else. Sometimes beef shank is OK if you boil the hell out of it and ox tongues are tender but require at least 3 hours of boiling.

There is supposedly an Argentine steak place out on Pulaska but prices run around 300 zł a kilo. Too rich for my blood.
Our cuisine is mostly Polish -- today we had the classic combination -- breaded pork cutlets with braised cabbage and boiled potatoes. Occasionally we have spaghetti bolognese, pierogi, naleśniki, hamburgers, fried fish or or braised young cabbage and kiełbasa. Bigos only in the colder months. Soups include:yellow split pea (my favourite), krupnik, tomato with noodles (wife prefers rice), cream of sorrel (szczawiowa), tripe or bolete mushrooms.Inb summer chłodnik. Fried stuffed eggs in shells are great and my all-time favourites include roast chicken Polonaise with bread, liver and dill stuffing (kurczę po polsku) and roast duck with apples (or apples & prunes). Not to mention roast pork loin with prunes.
Harry
20 May 2015 #19
What are 29-day-aged steaks

Steaks which have been aged for 29 days. Personally I go for dry aged but Poles seem to prefer wet aged, they certainly buy a lot more wet aged.

where are they sold and for how much?

Lots of places. Biedronka have a particularly good value range, starting at about ten zlots for a 350g steak.

I have never had a good steak in Poland

This appears to be the most popular place among foreigners in Warsaw:
en.befsztyk.pl/beef-steaks.html

However, according to the owner a good 90% of his customers these days are Polish. Personally I go for the 21-day aged filet mignon cut from Polish Angus if I want to spend some cash (150zl a kilo) or the hanger steak (from Polish Angus) if I don't.
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
21 May 2015 #20
By wet aging do you mean soaking the meat in a marinade? Then should dry aging be something like air-drying sausage?
englishbird
21 May 2015 #21
polonius I hate to tell you but curry is not 'trendy exotica' to British people, it is their staple diet.

when I lived in Poland I ate ...<drumrolls>.........food from the local supermarket!!
Atch 17 | 3,232
21 May 2015 #22
Dry aged beef is when the whole carcass is hung for three or four weeks without any covering over it, wet aged is vacuum packed.
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
21 May 2015 #23
Never heard of drumrolls. What are they? Curry dishes have become part of British cuisine but their subcontienntal origin cannot be denied and they are not a part of traditional, indigenous English cookery.It'd be like saying pizza is a typical Polish dish.
Harry
21 May 2015 #24
Curry dishes have become part of British cuisine but their subcontienntal origin cannot be denied

The balti was invented in the UK. The chicken tikka masala was invented in the UK. The phall was invented in the UK. Saying that those dishes are not British is like saying that pierogi are Italian and not Polish because ravioli are similar and older.

they are not a part of traditional, indigenous English cookery.

Traditions change. The only truly indigenous food of any country is uncooked dead animal, vegetables, berries and nuts.
Atch 17 | 3,232
21 May 2015 #25
Harry is right. Polish cuisine itself is the combination of a number of influences. No man is an island and especially not when located in central Europe.
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
23 May 2015 #26
Every cuisine is a combination of various influences. If someone wants to be pedantically precise, then one could say: "what in the 19th and 20th centuries.has traditonally been regarded as British, German, Mexican, Hungarian, Italian, Swedish, Polish, Albanian, etc. cuisine."
jestesidiotka
23 May 2015 #27
well OK polonius but you did not start this thread out of interest in Polish cuisine, but as a chance to have a dig at British people.

What do you Americans eat? McDonalds and Wendy's with a side order of transfats?
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
23 May 2015 #28
The average American has a horrible diet -- just look at the number of fast-food joints and fat slobs in the supermarkets and on the streets. There are health-conscious niche groups as there are in any country. But some of them are promoting equally unhealthy vegan diets and other fads.
jestesidiotka
23 May 2015 #29
yet you are happy to make stereotyping and ill informed posts referencing

" bangers & mash, fish & chips, shepherd's pie, lamb chops with mint sauce"
OP Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
23 May 2015 #30
Are you saying that those things have disappeared form the Birtish menu? What about black pudding, steak & kidney pie, Yorkshire pudding, kippers and scones? It's be a shame because personally I quite like roast beef and Yorkshire pudding, steak & kidney pie and scones.

Contrary to your insinuation, my main interest as someone whose writings include foodways, was to find out to what extent expats retain theri native eating habits and what they adopt form the host country. According to PF's authority on the subject (and every other subject for that matter?!) there are hardly any expats left in Poland. Almost inspires one to rephrase Joan Baez's well-known ballad: "Where have all the expats gone, long time passing?"


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