Kashubian food is known for being rich and heavy, mixing fish and seafood specialties found along its coast and its various lakes, with the hearty food from its rustic interior, influenced by centuries of Germanic and Slavic culture.
Examples of Kashubian food include: Fish chowder, boiled potatoes, Kluski noodles, potato dumplings, potato pancakes, smoked sausages, blood sausage, pickled herring, egg dumplings, liver and onions, baked ham, sauerkraut. White or rye bread was a staple. Sour milk (buttermilk) was also common.
Potato dumplings are typically served with bits of bacon, onions, and sometimes sauerkraut. A popular food originating from Kashubia is grucholec, a potato-based cake that includes strips of thin bacon, onions, and pickles cooked together. Another popular Kashubian food is plińce, which are soft potato pancakes served with sugar or cream on top.
Kiełbasa kaszubska jałówiecka, or Kashubian sausages, are made from veal, pork and beef, are traditionally cold smoked using alder wood and juniper, and can be stored for months at a time. Another regional speciality, czarnina, is cooked with either goose or duck meat along with dried apples, pears, cherries, and potatoes. Pig-raising was common as a food source.
In addition to Kashubian food, standard Polish cuisine can also be found throughout the Kashubia area, including pierogi, bigos, golonka (ham hocks), gołąbki (cabbage rolls), and gulasz (goulash, stew).
Kashubian women canned and pickled many vegetables from their gardens: dill pickles, pickled beets, string beans, cabbage, peas, carrots, rhubarb relish, green tomato relish, horseradish. Forests in Kashubia were vital for lumber but also for mushrooms, berries, honey, and hunting game.
Fishing in lakes was also essential to the Kashubians – they ate fish fresh in the warmer months and would dry or smoke them for the winter months.
Kashubian cuisine is a blend of food from the sea, the forests, and the farmland.
(Actual meals from restaurants in Gdansk – 2018)
Common Kashubian sweets: cakes, poppyseed coffee cakes, raisin cookies, oatmeal cookies,
and doughnuts (Photo taken in Kashubia – 2018)
Links to Kashubian Food Websites
Canadian Kashub Cookbook (2007)
Can be ordered through the Wilno Heritage Society Website.
While southern Polish beers have long since dominated the country’s beer market, the Pomerania area has its own brewing tradition, helped in part by centuries of German influence. Amber is perhaps the province’s best-known beer brands, and has won numerous beer awards in the last two decades. In Gdańsk, there are a number of brewpubs specializing in their own brews, including Brovarnia Gdańsk and Browar Trójmiejski Lubrow.
A speciality drink in the Gdańsk area is goldwasser. Made since the 1500s, goldwasser is a root and herbal liqueur, typically 35 to 40 percent strong. The drink is famous for its small flecks of gold floating within its liquid.