Cooking zeli

Discussion in 'Food & Drink' started by Polednikova, Jan 29, 2007.

  1. Polednikova

    Polednikova Well-Known Member

    I've just made some zeli, using a packet from the supermarket. So far as I could see, with my one month of Czech lessons, there were no cooking instructions on the packet, only nutritional information so I presumed all Czechs would know how to prepare it. It already had caraway seeds in it so I don't think I was supposed to do too much to it.

    I added some fried onions and garlic - and some chopped up parky because I happened to have some to use up - and it wasn't bad but it was a bit sharp and not as 'creamy/sloppy' as the zeli served in restaurants.

    Does anyone know what else I should have done to it? Or is it just different from restaurant zeli?
  2. eso

    eso Well-Known Member

    I'm little confused. You've got zelí in packet?
    I know raw cabbage - head cabbage, or "kysané/kyselé zelí" - sauerkraut - sour cabbage. Second is mostly in glass jar.
  3. dzurisova

    dzurisova Well-Known Member

    Whew eso, I'm glad to see you are confused. At first I thought that my czech must be worse than I thought since "zeli" to me meant "cabbage".

    There are caraway seeds in cabbage?
  4. Karel_lerak

    Karel_lerak Well-Known Member

    What you have bought is "kyselé/kysané zelí" = sauerkraut (you may buy it in a glass or in a plastic bag). The easiest way to prepare it is to make "zelný salát". Mix the chopped sauerkraut with minced onions, let the acid liquid away (if you want, you may also drink it - it's considered healthy), add some oil and it's ready to serve :)
    Cooking is more difficult, at least there exist two principal ways to cook "zelí", Czech and Moravian arts. In the restaurant you usually get one of the Czech variants. The Moravian one is sweeter and cooked with "jíška/zásmažka"(="roux") - made from fat and flour.
  5. Karel_lerak

    Karel_lerak Well-Known Member

    According to a recipe in a Czech cookbook:
    1/2 kg of sauerkraut (including the liquid ="lák")
    6 dkg of pork lard
    3 dkg of flour
    1 onion
    1-2 sugar cubes
    few drops of lemon juice (according to taste)
    vinegar (if the sauerkraut is not sour enough)
    Cut the saurkraut to shorter pieces.
    Let the chopped onion froth on oil, add sauerkraut and stew until it is soft, add flour, sugar and vinegar if necessary.
    "Dobrou chuť!"
    Please forgive me my terminology :)
  6. Polednikova

    Polednikova Well-Known Member

    I'm sorry I confused everyone. Silly me. Karel is quite right. The packet (plastic from the fridge rather than paper from the shelves) does indeed say "kysané zelí" but as it's called "zelí" in restaurants when served with pork and dumplings, I thought that was what it was known as.

    And thanks, Karel, for going to the trouble to looking up a recipe for me. For me, it would certainly need the sugar. I think the dish I've had in restaurants is wonderful and I'll carry on trying to replicate it. My late father was Czech - hence my user name. He escaped in 1940 and joined the RAF then stayed on after the war. For anyone who has visited the Czech National House on West End Lane in London, he was manager there after the war. He would have been amazed and delighted to know that I have moved to Prague and am trying to work out how to cook his national dishes!
  7. Zeisig

    Zeisig Well-Known Member

    Probably you will need a precise assay balance as dg means decigram(me). :)

    n. Abbr. dg
    A metric unit of mass or weight equal to one-tenth of a gram (1/10 g).
  8. Karel_lerak

    Karel_lerak Well-Known Member

    You are right, use dkg instead :) (=1/100 of kg or 10 g)
  9. Sova

    Sova Well-Known Member

    Actually, it should be dag for decagram (10 g), but dkg is still common usage (albeit incorrect according to SI).
  10. wer

    wer Well-Known Member

    Incorrect according to SI, but correct according to Czech standard :wink:. Czech standard tolerates both possibilities, because Czechs are accustomed to the old prefix dk and because using of decagram is suprisingly popular here.
    Only pure scientists use the dag variant (or, in fact, even scientists don't use it because deca is not very serviceable prefix in science).
  11. Karel_lerak

    Karel_lerak Well-Known Member

    Please quote the number of SI norm for cooking "zelí" :)
  12. wer

    wer Well-Known Member

    What a perfidious :eek: attack on me :lol:. I just tried :cry: to defend your usage of dkg, Karel :lol:.

    But I'm pretty sure there is an EU regulation for it :twisted:!
  13. Karel_lerak

    Karel_lerak Well-Known Member

    I could not miss the ocassion :p , but - thanks
    No doubt about 8) :p :)
  14. Sova

    Sova Well-Known Member

    By the way, I was purposely nitpicking, so please, no one get your shorts in a knot! :wink: The main thing is that we understand one another, whether we say dkg or dag.

    And yes, we scientists don't have much use for the deca- prefix (or hecto- and deci- for that matter).
  15. Polednikova

    Polednikova Well-Known Member

    I am delighted to have been the instigator of so much scientific discussion, most of which I haven't understood! I will just get back to my cooking!
  16. Sova

    Sova Well-Known Member

    Dobrou chuť!
  17. Ani

    Ani Well-Known Member

    Sova, I loved your 'shorts in a knot' :D I usually say 'don't get your knickers in a twist' :D nothing to do with the topic though :)
  18. Kanadanka

    Kanadanka Well-Known Member

    here we say "don't get your panties in a knot", which is rather insulting when said to a man :lol:

    I just wanted to bring up one point with cooking zeli. We don't use flour or rue (jizka), we use one raw potato, very finely shredded and added to the cooked zeli. Then we cook it for another 5 to 10 minutes, stirring it. The starch in the potato thickens the zeli and the potato adds to the more compact consistency.
    I have often rinsed kysele zeli to get some of the sour taste out (and most of the salt). you can always add again at the end, if it's not sour enough.
  19. evantula

    evantula Active Member

    I cook my kysele zeli the same way as you do, Kanadanka. I also first sauté some diced onion in little olive oil until it is golden brown. It gives it a little bit of a šmrnc, as they say. I remember that my friends’ mother who is from Olomouc was using jišku. We used the potato.

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