How to Cook Polish Sausages: A Detailed Guide
Each country has its own twist to the traditional sausages. Whether it’s the aromatic Mexican Chorizo, or the gingery German Bratwurst, or the sweet Polish kielbasa, sausages are to die for. If you want to treat yourself with some meaty deliciousness, it is better to make your own Polish sausages than to order one from the supermarket. We have laid out some pretty simple recipes on how to cook polish sausages.
Here is a Wikipedia page on sausages!
What You Need:
- Uncooked fresh kielbasa
- Sauté pan
- Large oven or sauce pot
- Baking sheet
- Meat thermometer
- Beer (optional)
- Bay Leaf – 1/2
- Marjoram 1tsp
- Garlic – ½ smashed cloves
- Peppercorns and mustard seeds – 4
- Onions – 1 (Optional)
Now, let’s start cooking!
Photo by: Conscious Design
Step 1: Prep the Meat
Since you’ll find your sausages in the frozen section, needless to say you’ll have to thaw it. No, you’re not going to let it thaw over through cooking because you don’t want to end up spending the night with your head over the toilet by eating mushy sausages.
Just keep it in the fridge overnight so that it can defrost at a better temperature. Then you can decide whether you want to simmer it or boil it.
Step 2: Select Your Cooking Method
Since it is sausages, you have the option of frying it, caramelizing it with onions or simply boiling it. For beginners, your safest bet is to boil it and after that, you can revisit some other methods.
Yes, it is true that deglazing your Polish sausages with beer sounds fun but it’s a lot easier to find burn sausages through other methods than through boiling. Boiling is delicious too!
Step 3: Cook Your Sausages
Option 1: Searing (Optional)
Many cooks prefer searing their sausages before boiling it in the pot. You will have to raise the heat to a medium level as you sear the kielbasa in the frying pan. For a quick sear, add butter. The idea of searing is to have a decent brown color on the sausages, thus adding flavor to the meat. You can then pat them dry using a paper towel and start the boiling process.
Some neat freaks who don’t want to spoil their pans complete the step in the boiling pot.
However, using a pot means, you will have to deglaze it with beer since boiling them with water won’t produce a pleasant taste.
Option 2: Deglazing
Deglazing is more of a flavor recovery from the burned bottom, although not the most healthy process. Simply add a few dashes of beer to the pan after taking the sausages out. Use a spatula to loosen them up as the bits turn softer and keep adding beer until everything is floating. At least half of your beer should go into the boiling process.
Some cooks end the deglazing by tossing a few onions but you have the option not to.
Note: If you are searing and deglazing your Polish sausages, you will not need to caramelize or sauté it in the end. You should also know that caramelizing with olive oil and sautéing with onions produces browner and crispier results while the sausage has more moisture.
Option 3: Boiling
For a water-only method, simply gather the water and seasonings in the pot and boil. Then add your Polish sausages or kielbasa and onions into the mix.
Cover the pot and allow the sausages to boil for 45 – 50 minutes.
For those enthusiasts thinking of adding beer to the mix instead of water, here’s a reminder – Beer reduces as it cooks. So you have to add the beer to the water and keep another beer bottle nearby in case you need to add more. The time of boiling is still the same, except this mixture needs your attention.
Option 4: Simmering (Optional)
After thawing, instead of boiling, you can let your Polish sausages simmer in the oven. Place the goodies in a pot along with the seasonings.
Bring in your sauce pot and place the sausage links and water inside. The depth of the water must merely cover the food. A medium-low heat temperature for exactly 45 minutes will suffice for the kielbasa to simmer.
The temperature inside the oven must reach at least 165F. Check the water level at regular intervals and add the water when needed. After they are done, use a tong to take them out and pat them dry.
Option 5: Baking
If you choose to simmer, you can simply finish your meal in the oven. Don’t be surprised if the sausages feel moist even after patted dry. You can serve the kielbasa just like that or finish them in the oven. Simply leave it in the oven for more 5 to 10 minutes at 375F. The water dries and the meat has a light brown color on the outside.
If you choose not to simmer, you must leave your sausages outside the fridge at least 20 minutes before working with them.
- You might want to preheat the oven at 400F before taking them out of the fridge.
- Cut up the links between the sausages for them to bake evenly.
- Wrap the ends of a baking tray with aluminum foil and with parchment on top. You can also use a rack if you don’t like your food greasy.
- Spread the sausages at least 2 inches apart and place them in the oven for 20 minutes or when you see cracking in the skin.
- Flip them over with a fork and bake them for another 20 minutes.
- After they are done, you can cut a sausage to check if they are still pink in the middle. If they are, another 10 minutes should do the trick.
A Dutch oven is best for baking Polish sausages.
Option 6: Caramelize
Caramelizing after baking takes cooking sausages to the next level as they become more palatable. You heat the saute pan first and add olive oil. Add in the sausages and toss.
Option 7: Sauté
As you caramelize your sausages, you can add in chopped onions and saute them as well.
Photo by: Rasmus Gundorff Sæderup
Step 4: Removing Content from Dish
Allow your kielbasa to rest outside to settle before serving.
In case you are boiling, remove the final product from the water and rest them on a plate with a paper towel between them. The towel soaks in excess water and beer.
If there is beer or water remaining from deglazing or boiling, you can pour it into a deep serving dish with the meat on top.
Step 5: Serve
Polish sausages have a number of ways to be served. You can just take a fork and knife and ravish them all on your own, or you can pair it with other side dishes for a decent meal. Some pair the sausages with onions and pasta. Others add steamed cabbages, or mashed potatoes or even dumplings.
That being said, kielbasa tastes good with any starchy food.
The recipes look quick and simple. There’s always room for experimentation on Polish Sausages. Have your pick and try it for yourself.
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