The Chef Upstairs



Bigos - Polish Hunter's Stew

Serves 6 to 8


  • 2 pounds smoked pork hocks
  • Salt and pepper
  • 4 medium onions, sliced
  • 1 pound slab bacon, large dice
  • 4 to 6 cups beef stock
  • 8 oz mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 pkg. dried porcini mushroom
  • 1.5 litres sauerkraut, drained and rinsed
  • 1 pound Polish sausage smoked
  • 1 pound polish sausage plain
  • 1 19 oz can peas
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 cup amber beer


Soak the porcini mushrooms in 1 cup of hot water for 30 minutes. Drain the mushrooms and set aside. Filter the liquid and reserve.

Soak the sauerkraut in a large bowl with hot water for 20 minutes, then drain. Repeat and set aside.

Add bacon to a large Dutch oven on medium heat and cook until fat is rendered.

Add the sliced onions and continue to cook until onions are caramelized (about 15 minutes)

Add the smoked and regular polish sausage and cook for another 5 minutes

Add the beer and bring to a light simmers. Then add the mushrooms and cook for another 5 minutes

Cut the pork hock into 2 0r 3 pieces and add to the pot. Add 4 cups of the beef broth, bay leaves, peas, sauerkraut and 1 tsp salt.

Add more beef broth if necessary so that the sauerkraut is just covered. Bring to a light boil, reduce heat to a simmer and cover with a cartouche and lid. Simmer at least 3 hours until sauerkraut is cooked through.

Season to taste with salt, pepper and a little brown sugar if you like it a little sweeter.

This is something that will taste even better the next day.