jueves, 30 de enero de 2014

Platos Polacos: Pierogis

La verdad que venir a Polonia y no probarlos es pecado! La primera toma de contacto con ellos es rara jaja yo acostumbrada a las típicas empanadas argentinas (al horno o fritas) y me encuentro con unas similares pero cocidas.
Los hay con distinto relleno: queso y patatas; col con setas; carne y col; sólo con carne; o de manzana y canela. Para mi los que se llevan la medalla de oro son los de patatas y queso acompañados de taquitos de bacón (o cebolla caramelizada).. una delicia!!! (eso si..llenan bastante..así que cuidadin jaja)

Encontré esta receta por internet y quiero compartirla con ustedes:

Rinde: 80  pierogis

600 gramos de queso fresco
7 papas, peladas y cocidas
50 mililitros de aceite vegetal
300 gramos de champiñones, pelados y picados
3 cebollas, picadas
1 cucharada de crema ácida
Sal y pimienta, al gusto
1 kilo de harina de trigo
2 huevos
50 mililitros de agua tibia
80 gramos de mantequilla
3 litros de agua (para hervir la pasta)

Modo de preparación

Preparación: 1hora  ›  Cocción: 40min  ›  Listo en:1hora40min

Muele el queso y las papas en un molino o procesador de alimentos.
Calienta el aceite en un sartén grande y agrega los champiñones y cebollas. Cocina hasta que estén suaves, aproximadamente 15 minutos. Pasa la mezcla a un tazón grande y agrega el queso, papas, crema ácida. Mezcla bien y reserva.
Para hacer la pasta polaca, coloca la harina en una superficie limpia y forma un pozo en el centro. Agrega los huevos, mantequilla y un poco de agua tibia. Mezcla con tus manos, agregando poco a poco el agua tibia. Amasa y, si es necesario, agrega más harina en el área de trabajo. Sigue amasando hasta tener una pasta suave.
Corta una cuarta parte de la masa. Enharina el área de trabajo y extiende la maxa con un rodillo hasta tener un grosor de 3 milímetros. Corta círculos con un cortador de galletas o vaso.
Coloca 1 cucharada del relleno en el centro de cada círculo de pasta y dóblalos como si fueran empanadas. Pellizca las orillas para sellar. Repite el procedimiento con el resto de la pasta y relleno.
Hierve 3 litros de agua con un poco de sal. Agrega la pasta rellena (20 a la vez) y cocina hasta que empiecen a flotar en la superficie. Escurre y repite el procedimiento hasta terminar con el pierogi.
Coloca la pasta cocida en un plato y adorna con cebolla caramelizada y ramas de perejil.

Aquí en la zona sur los mejores pierogis los probé en Katowice en Pierozkowo express y en Wroclaw en Pierogarnia que tienen su variante al horno deliciosos!!

Smacznego! (Qué aproveche!)

Polish Pierogies

Hey there! I've just found this recipe on the blog Taste Food, Enjoy Travel and I would like to share it with you :)
You can find potato, meat and vegetable pierogi but I love potato ones! they are delicious!!

Potato & Cheese Pierogi

For potato and cheese filling you need 1 tablespoon grated onion, 2 tablespoons butter, 2 cups cold mashed potatoes, 1 cup cottage cheese, salt and pepper.

For Pierogi you will need: 2 and 1/2 cups flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt,1 egg, 2 teaspoons oil, 3/4 cup warm water.

First prepare the filling, start by cooking the onion in butter until it tender, and then add potatoes and cheese to it. To taste better put salt and pepper as you like. Remember when you start filling, the filling should be thick enough to hold its shape.

When you done with filling, start to prepare the Pierogi, to do so; mix the flour with the salt in a deep bowl. Add the egg, oil and water to make medium soft dough. Knead on a floured board until the dough is smooth. Divide the dough into 2 parts and then cover them and let stand for at least 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, roll the dough quite thin on a floured board and next cut rounds with a large biscuit cutter, or the open end of a glass, put the round in the palm of your hand.  Put some of filling in it, fold over to form a half circle and press the edges together with your fingers -the edges should be free of filling-,be sure the edges are sealed well to prevent the filling from coming out. Place the Pierogi on a floured board or towel and then cover with another towel to prevent them from drying out.

To cook it, drop a few Pierogi into a large quantity of rapidly boiling salted water-do not attempt to cook too many at a time- Stir softly with a wooden spoon to separate them and to prevent them from sticking to the bottom of the pan. It’s need about 3-4 minutes for boiling. Pierogies will be ready when they are puffed. Remove them with a perforated spoon. Place in a deep dish, sprinkle generously with melted butter to prevent them from sticking, cover to keep them hot until all are cooked.

Enjoy the Polish Pierogi.

miércoles, 29 de enero de 2014

Polish Legends: Wawel Dragon

Those who visit Krakow should know about its famous dragon:

Long ago in Poland’s early history, On the River Vistula, there was a small settlement of wooden huts inhabited by peaceful people who farmed the land and plied their trades. Near this village was Wawel Hill. In the side of Wawel Hill was a deep cave. The entrance was overgrown with tall, grass, bushes, and weeds. No man had ever ventured inside that cave, and some said that a fearsome dragon lived within it. The young people of the village didn’t believe in the dragon. The old people of the village said that they had heard their fathers tell of a dragon who slept in the cave, and no man must dare waken it, or there would be dire consequences for them all. Some of the youths decided to explore the cave and put an end to such foolish talk. They thought that they knew better and dragons were just old stories from the past. A group of these young people took some torches and went to the cave. They slowly entered the cave until they came to a dark mass of scales blocking their way and the sound of heavy breathing. The boys ran as the dragon awakened and roared. Fire came from it’s mouth warming the boys heels and backs. When they were far enough away, they looked back and saw the dragon at the entrance of the cave, very angry being awakened from it’s sleep. From that day on, the people knew no peace. Every day the dragon appeared and carried off a sheep or preferably young virgins. The populace made many attempts to kill the dragon but nothing succeeded and many of those that attempted were killed. The hero in this part of the story differs. In the village lived a wise man, or a shoemaker or a shoe makers apprentice named Krakus or Krac. He got some sheep and mixed a thick, yellow paste from sulfur. Krakus smeared it all over the animals. Then led them to a place where the dragon would see them. The dragon came out as expected, saw the sheep, roared, rushed down the hill and devoured the sheep. The dragon had a terrible fire within him, and a terrible thirst. It rushed to the River Vistula and started drinking. It drank and drank and could not stop. The dragon began to swell, but still it drank more and more. It went on drinking till suddenly there was a great explosion, and the dragon burst. There was great rejoicing by the people. Krakus, was made ruler of the village, and they built a stronghold on Wawel Hill. The country prospered under the rule of Krakus and a city grew up around the hill which was called Krakow, in honour of Krakus. When Krakus died, the people gave him a magnificent burial, and erected a mound over his tomb which can be seen to this day. The people brought earth with their own hands to the mound, and it has endured through all the centuries as a memorial to the person that killed the dragon of Krakow.

The large 200-foot-long cave in Wawel Hill, Krakow, which has been known for centuries as the monster’s den, now attracts thousands of visitors each year. Whatever the truth of the dragon legend, the Dragon’s Cave (Polish ‘Smocza Jama’) is Cracow’s oldest residence, inhabited by man from the Stone Age through the 16th century.

In 1970 a metal sculpture of the Wawel Dragon designed by Bronisław Chromy was placed in front of the dragon's den. The dragon has seven heads, but frequently people think that he has one head and six legs. To the amusement of children, it noisily breathes fire every few minutes, thanks to a natural gas nozzle installed in the sculpture's mouth.
The street leading along the banks of the river leading towards the castle is ulica smocza, which translates as "Dragon Street".

(sources: anglik.net Wikipedia )

lunes, 27 de enero de 2014

Education in Poland: Grading System

Hi! five more exams and I'll be finished all my exams this term, and at this point I've realised that I haven't talk about the grading sysyem they use here:

"The university-level education uses a numeric system of grades from 2 to 5, with most grades including 0.5 point increments: 2.0 is failing grade, 3.0 is the lowest passing grade, 3.5, 4.0, 4.5 follow, and 5.0 is the highest grade. There is no grade 2.5."
In Spain we use a 10-point grading scale: 10-9 Excellent (Sobresliente); 8 Very good with few errors (Notable Alto); 7 good with some errors (Notable bajo); 6 satisfactory with many erros (Bien); 5 sufficient (Aprobado) and from 0 to 4 Fail.

In my faculty, in Spain, if we fail an exam (on February or June) our next chance to pass it is in September. However, here they have a retake session in February-March for the first semester and then the summer semester retake session in September.

domingo, 26 de enero de 2014

Visiting Wrocław

Here you have the English version of my trip to Wrocław. All I can say about this city is that I love it since the moment I saw the main square and its dwarf! (yap.. dwarfs!! I will tell you how they arrived and who are them) It’s a really charming and beautiful place… It was love at first sight.

All these colorful buildings surround the square and they were built after the WWII and with different styles. Next to them we can find the City Hall- Ratusz and as you can see is quite impressive because of its size and its Baroque style. The first city hall was built in the 13th century but later on different elements were added such as the tower; from the Renaissance architecture; and some medieval sculptures. For 4zl (1€ aprox) you can visit it and get into the tower.

If, you are going on December,like me, you can find an adorable Christmas street market where you can taste typical polish sweets and dishes, drink hot wine and buy some Christmas presents.

Next to Rynek you can see St Elizabeth’s Church that was built between the 14th and the 15th century. It was a protestant church until the WWII and it has an 80m tower from where you can see the entire city and it costs 5zl.

Another important building to take into acount is the University of Wrocław. It is quite astonished. It was built between 1728 and 1742 when the city was under Prussia rule. It has 4 rooms but the most important one is the Aula Leopoldina with its Baroque style that you can see in the pic; and we were told that they still use it to teach.

One must place to see in Wrocław is the Wyspa Piaskowa (Sand Island); you can get there through the Most Piaskowy bridge and in there you can see the most historical buildings of the city: St Ann’s church, the University Library and a Gothic church.

There is a green bridge called "Most Tumski" which takes you to Ostrów Tumski; and as you can see the bridge is full of padlocks put there by the couples.

Once there, you should visit Wrocław Cathedral build in the year 1000; however it was destroyed several times, especially during WWII when it was completely destroyed. You can visit the tower for just 4zl.

 Other import parts of the city are the (Ogród Botaniczny) Botanical garden; the National Museum (Muzeum Narodowe): The oldest collections stem from previous German museums and certain sacral objects of Wrocław and the Lower Silesia, as well as from Lvov collections conveyed to Poland in 1946 by the then Ukrainian authorities; The Muzeum Archidiecezjalne; The Raclawicka Panorama: is a monumental cycloramic painting depicting the Battle of Racławice, during the Kościuszko Uprising. It is currently located in Wrocław, Poland. The painting is one of only a few preserved relics of a genre of 19th century mass culture, and the oldest in Poland. The panorama stands in a circular fashion and, with the viewer in the center, presents different scenes at various viewing angles. The price is 7zl but Wednesday the entrance is free.

I’m sure that after being walking for several hours your body needs energy; in Rynek you can find different kinds of restaurants: Italian, Mexican and Spanish food… But let me recommend you PIEROGARNIA: it’s next to the city hall, polish tasty food and cheaper.

Do you want to know the dwarfs' secret? click here and find it out!

A weekend in Poznań

Apart from going to Worcław, in the same month we also went to Poznań. Our adventure started on a Friday midnight when we took the train in Katowice and seven hours later we arrived to Poznań.
Important: we travel with the TLK company and each trip is like lotery. Our trip was quite long and the train really old. However, when we went to Wrocław (a 3hour trip) the train was really modern and amazing…!

Let’s focus on Poznań! I’ve to say that the city is a bit small but nice and in one day you can see it all. We started our tour visiting the old square- Stare Rynek  and the city hall-Ratuz. The square is charming and it’s surrounded by colorful houses built by the bourgeoisie with different styles: Gothic, Renaissence, and Baroque.

In one corner of the square we can find a fountain from the 18th century. There are also three more called: Mars, Neptune and Apolo and inspired on other fountains from the 16th century.  In the square you can also find Henry Sienkiewic Museum (I think it is the Green house) who was a Nobel Prize in 1905 thanks to his novel Quo Vadis?.

In the same square there is the city hall and it has a Renaissance style and it was built in 1539 by the Italian architect Juan Baptista Quadro. Inside the building you can visit two museums: Poznan History Museum and the Musical instruments Museum.

Every day at 12p.m. people meet at the city hall and watch two mechanical goats appearing from inside the clock. A legend behind the original addition of the goats to the clock mechanism states that a cook, while preparing a banquet for the voivode and other dignitaries, had burnt a roast deer, and attempted to replace it by stealing two goats from a nearby meadow. The goats escaped and ran up the town hall tower, where they attracted the attention of the townspeople when they began to butt each other (according to some versions, this drew attention to a fire which might otherwise have done significant damage). Because of the entertainment provided, the voivode pardoned both the cook and the goats, and ordered that two mechanical goats be incorporated into the new clock being made for the building.

Near the square there is the Kosciol Farny Sw. Stalislawa and the Kolegiuk Pojezuickie; one of the most important Baroque churches in Poland that was built between 1651 and 1732.

After that we moved to Ostrów Tumski which is an island in the Warta River. Here we can find the oldest buildings of the city:  The cathedral and St Mary’s Church. The cathedral was build in the 10th century and with a Baroque style but we cannot appreciate that because it was destroyed few times. The last renovation was after the WWII with a mixture of Baroque and Romantic style. What really surprised the visitors is its gold chapel. On the contrary, St Mary’s church remains the same as when it was built in the 15th century.

We finished our tour in the Imperial Castle-Zamek Cesarski, and in  Park  Cytadela which is on the site of Fort Winiary, a 19th-century fortified area north of the city centre. It contains a military museum, military cemeteries, and the remains of some of the fortifications.

jueves, 9 de enero de 2014

Vamos allá! Here we go! 2014

Hola hola!! Bueno.. ya era hora de dar la bienvenida al nuevo año en el blog. Ya otra vez en tierras polacas y echando de menos a la family, novio y amigos que quedaron en España; pero queda el último tramo de esta experiencia Erasmus que sin duda está siendo genial y de verdad recomiendo a todo aquel que se lo está planteando.
Las vacaciones en casa genial; con mis papis, hermano, amigos, novio. Cena de amigos, quedadas... todo genial! Sin embargo, la primer semana de este 2014 está siendo un caos total jaja Empecé el año con una babyshower de mi gran amiga Mai que pronto será mamá de una niña, Nerea. Después la llegada de los reyes y el viaje de vuelta.
Al llegar acá todo lo que no hice en las vacaciones (muy mal por cierto) me esta pasando factura...Estrés total, pocas horas de sueño y exámenes todos pegados! 14,15,16,22,23,27,28,29...
Típico de estas fechas: los propósitos para el 2014. La verdad que no me he propuesto ninguno... estaría más que bien aprobar todos los exámenes no? jajaja También intentaré escribir más en inglés en el blog...siempre me lo propongo pero cuando me pongo me da un poco de pereza jiji. Pero creo que empezaré hoy :P Esto es todo por hoy.. feliz fin de semana y feliz año nuevo!

Hello!!  alright..it was time to welcome the new year, wasn't it? I've just arrived to Poland a few days ago and of course I miss my family, boyfriend and friends. I  really enjoyed  my Christmas break at home.. the weather was pretty good and I really needed my mum's and my dad's food (also my mother-in-law's haha)
However, it was time to come back here and I must say that these first weeks are awful! I've all the exams together (14th,15th,16th,22nd,23rd,,27th,28th,29th...) plus I've done nothing during the holidays...

At this point of the year people talk about what they want to accomplish this 2014. A part from trying to pass al my exams, this year I will try to write more in English here so more people can read this blog. That's all for today .. have a nice weekend and Happy new Year!