Bigos (Hunter's Stew) Recipe Reviews - Allrecipes.com (Pg. 1)
Reviewed: Nov. 12, 2014
There is certainly a right and wrong way to prepare some traditional Polish recipes, Bigos isn't one of them. Many of them stemmed out of peasant kitchens a couple hundred years ago where people were trying to put a hot meal in front of their families with whatever they had on hand. Our family version didn't use the pork, flour, wine, carrots or mushrooms. Use a blend of rinsed sour kraut and cabbage. (One relatively large jar of sour kraut to half a head of cabbage) Rinsing kraut takes the canned saltiness out. We make this stove top, so use about 4 cups water to start and a pint of tomato juice as the moisture dissipates. The important part is to have lots of fluid at the beginning which will gradually reduce. Never let it dry out when cooking, add water/ tomato juice as needed, but you don't really want cabbage soup when you are ready to serve. I liked the kielbasa, but to my taste 3 links of cooked and crumbled spicy Italian Sausage make this even better. Like all cabbage based meals, the longer it cooks the better it will taste. Haven't had a cabbage roll that wasn't better the next day! Works very well after a day in a slow cooker. And like my aunt says in her recipe, enjoy a beer while preparing!
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Reviewed: Oct. 30, 2014
I added extra beef broth and caraway seeds and just simmered it stovetop for an hour; let it sit for a couple of hours to cool off and then re-heated it. Very tasty and every one liked it--pretty easy.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Scottsville, Kentucky, USA
Living In: Salt Lake City, Utah, USA

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Reviewed: Oct. 22, 2014
I absolutely love this.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Coldwater, Michigan, USA
Reviewed: Aug. 12, 2014
Grew up eating bigos. Don't leave out the sauerkraut and don't add Italian seasoning. Never heard of bigos made with wine or beer. Tastes best on the third day. Freezes extremely well.
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Photo by slim1

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Living In: Whitby, Ontario, Canada
Reviewed: Jan. 25, 2014
This recipe is super! Though not wishing to be contrarian, please note that Genevieve's negative review is misinformed. I'm a bigos aficionado having visited Poland about 50 times and consumed bigos probably in more than 100 locations all over that country. Upon arrival in Poland, seeking out bigos is usually one of my first endeavors. I share the foregoing to impart credence to my statements about Polish bigos. Though no two cooks make it identically, it ALWAYS is sauerkraut based (indeed usually mostly sauerkraut) and ALWAYS salty. I have NEVER seen it with venison or any other wild game (but why not?) and it NEVER has a "thick, rich brown base" (gravy). Genevieve obviously is thinking of something else. The translation "hunter's stew" may be the misnomer. Bigos, at least as it commonly is prepared in virtually every Polish household and restaurant today, is made with farm raised meats obtained from the butcher - most always including kielbasa and often with pork, bacon and/or ham. In Europe, recepies prominently featuring mushrooms as an ingredient commonly have the term "hunter" (mushroom hunter?) in their title. Bigos may or may not have a lot of or any mushrooms. But, in my experience, it always has a lot of sauerkraut, onions and kielbasa. The rest left to the imagination and resources of the cook. In Poland it is said no clever man states a preference concerning the bigos of his wife compared to his mother's if both women are living.
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Reviewed: Dec. 19, 2011
Full of flavor and super easy to make. Leftover's get better and better as the soup ages.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Edgewater, Maryland, USA
Living In: Prince Frederick, Maryland, USA

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Reviewed: Mar. 7, 2011
I am Polish and had bigos many many times. I have never seen wine as an ingredient of any traditional Polish dish - not in that climate! And Worcestershire sauce? Never even heard of it until I came to Canada. Also, no Polish cook I know would add basil or flour - it should be thick with veggies and meat but not murky. Also, potatoes are eaten with bigos on the side, mashed, but not as an ingredient. And never, never skip the caraway or tomatoe paste or mushrooms (dry mushrooms should be wild Boletus). Sourcraut is essential. So much for traditional bigos... If you are a vegetarian like I am, skip the meat - the dish is reach and tasty enough without it.
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Reviewed: Jan. 18, 2011
I made a quick-and-easy version. Brown the bacon, chopped pork loin (more tender than stew meat), and kielbasa together in a pressure cooker; really generate a thick fond. Add chopped onion and garlic. Deglaze with red wine. Add a whole shredded cabbage and half a jar of Bubbe's sauerkraut with liquid. Add black pepper and two bay leaves. Tomatoes optional. Pressure cook for 7 minutes. Done!!
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Reviewed: Dec. 30, 2010
This stew is out of this world! I made this for the priests in my parish and had a nice amount left over for my husband. I'm mostly a vegetarian (I eat fish) but I did try this just to make sure it was edible. It's heaven! I followed the recipe as far as preparing the meat but threw everything in a crock pot (including the meat) and let the pot do all the work. I also left out the garlic as one of the priests gets indigestion from it. Delicious!
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Reviewed: Dec. 19, 2010
The more meat you add the better! Just like Babcia used to make. I also add 1cup of chopped prunes. Love it! The longer you cook it the better. Cooling it off and warming it up again for a few days, makes the flavors better
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Cooking Level: Expert

Home Town: Warsaw, Masovian, Poland
Living In: Denver, Colorado, USA

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