Polish bean soup belongs to my favourite dishes from Poland because it is easy to prepare and very filling. There is not polish housewife that doesn’t know it! My mother made it thick and almost creamy. She has been cooking it since I can remember, so it is comfort food for me. If I had to describe it, I would say that has a tomato sauce consistency. Its main ingredients are white beans, different kind of meats and sausages. Like every stew: it tastes better when you heat it up several times.
The name “Polish bean soup – Fasolka po bretonsku” means Beans Brittany-Style literally. Some of you may think that for this reason the dish actually comes from Brittany, but actually when the dish is made “a la bretonne” that means that the dish contains white beans. Where does the recipe come from is really unclear. It is similar to the British baked beans, maybe the Poles change it a bit by adding a tremendous amount of meat? I am not sure if we will find this out!
Polish bean soup is pretty healthy, especially if you reduce the bacon and sausage part;) I also prepared “skinny” version of it with less bacon and chicken cubes, instead of sausage. This way the stew is low in fat and very rich in protein.
Below you will find the traditional Polish bean soup recipe. You can modify it as you like. Remember: if adding chicken, please cook it separately until soft, then cut it into cubes and set aside. Add the chicken just right before serving.
Polish Bean Soup Recipe - Fasolka po Bretonsku
- 500 g White beans
- 300 g Bacon smoked
- 2 cubes Beef stock optionally beef fond
- 4 grains Allspice
- 2 Bay leaves
- 2 White onions chopped, medium size
- 300 g Sausage this one you like the most!
- 1 tsp Butter
- 200 g Tomato paste
- 2-3 tsp Majoram
- 2-3 cloves Garlic
- Salt & pepper
- Bread freshly cut
- Parsley optional, to garnish
Take a large pot and cover the beans with water at room temperature and leave them overnight. Make sure the beans are all the time covered by water while soaking. If necessary add some more water into the pot.
Put the whole piece of smoked bacon, beef stock, grains of allspice and 2 bay leaves in the pot where the beans are and cook them until they are soft. To cook them in the pressure cooker, because it takes only 15-20 min.
In the meantime chop onions and cut sausage into cubes. Take a large pan and fry butter on medium heat. As soon as the butter is melted add chopped onions and sausage cubes. Fry until the onions and sausages turn golden brown around 5minutes. Don't forget to stir it from time to time.
Remove the smoked bacon from the broth and cut it into cubes. Put it back to the pot with the soup.
At this point add onion, sausages, tomato paste, majoram, onions with sausage, 2 cloves of crushed garlic, salt and pepper and simmer the soup for another 15 minutes. Stir it. Before serving don't forget to remove the bay leaves.
Serve warm with bread on the side and enjoy the mix of beautiful flavours:) You can garnish it with parsley, if you like!
The more you reheat the dish the better it gets! You can keep the stew up to 3 days in the fridge. If you like, you can also freeze it!
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