Kielbasa is a classic sausage loved by everyone. It is easy to cook and pure delight in different recipes.
You can enjoy Kielbasa in your soups, fried with pasta, grilled with pierogies, or roasted with potatoes and a lot more.
However, you have to learn the right way to cook it to keep the flavor and taste intact when eating it, or you end up with a non-appetizing and less flavorful Kielbasa.
This article will show you what you need to know about Kielbasa and the best way of cooking it.
What is Kielbasa?
Kielbasa or white sausage is a well-seasoned Polish sausage that contains ground pork, garlic, pepper, salt, marjoram herb, and other flavorings, which makes it different from the more common linked sausages.
Although you can use turkey, chicken, beef, or lamb to make it, the delicacy must have the coarse meat texture, intense garlic taste, and the original Polish technique of making it a Kielbasa.
You will find it in the meat section of grocery stores stacked near uncooked link sausage or ground meat.
Types of Kielbasa
The way you will cook your Kielbasa depends on the kind of Kielbasa available for use. The three variants are:
This is raw, fresh, and white-colored and requires some boiling before getting baked, grilled, or fried to brown its skin. Nonetheless, you can decide to eat it after boiling it too.
You can eat this Kielbasa without cooking, but it is better to grill, bake, or fry it for some minutes before consumption – for safety reasons.
Dried or Smoked Kielbasa
This variant has been pre-cooked before smoking, with artificial smoke flavors added by the producer.
You can eat it the way it is.
What Are the Methods for Cooking Kielbasa?
Boil Your Kielbasa
Before starting the boiling process, you need to have taken your Kielbasa out of the refrigerator to unfreeze for an hour or more.
- Place the raw Kielbasa into a cooking pot, put in spices such as peppercorn, marjoram, onion slices, bay leaf, and garlic cloves
- Pour water on it and place on a burner that is set to medium heat
- Cover the pot and leave to boil for 50-60 minutes or until the temperature reaches 1650 F
- Lower the heat and leave to simmer for 25-30 minutes or until the water dries up
- Remove from the pot unto a plate to prevent the skin from becoming too tender, as this might reduce or hamper the flavor
When boiling your Kielbasa, ensure it is not overheated so the casing will not burst open.
You should store boiled Kielbasa in a resealable pack and freeze. After that, you can use it for 3–4 weeks.
Despite the boiling, Kielbasa retains its white color, let’s go-ahead to find ways of adding color (browning) to it in the following method described below.
Cook in the Oven
- Baking tray
- Spatula or a pair of tongs
- Preheat your oven to a temperature of 3250 F after putting in an oven rack
- Coat your baking pan or tray with little oil and put the Kielbasa inside it
- Put the baking tray into the oven
- Leave to bake for 15-20 minutes
- Flip the Kielbasa with the tongs for an evenly cooked result every 5 minutes
- Use an instant meat thermometer to check if the temperature is up to 1600 F to confirm if tender enough
- Remove from the oven and allow to stay for 2-3 minutes before serving
Another way of knowing if the treat is ready is the expansion and splitting of the skin. At this point, it begins to emit a delicious aroma that is irresistible, as well as a golden-brown color.
Grill Your Kielbasa
Grilling is a simple and easy way of maintaining the traditional method of cooking Kielbasa.
Let’s find out how.
- Whether using charcoal or electric grill, let the temperature be set around 3000-3500 F
- Oil the grill bar using a paper towel or fire-proof grill gloves to avoid burning yourself
- Place the pieces of sausage on the grill
- Leave and allow to cook for about 4 minutes before flipping them over
- Allow the other side to also cook for 4 minutes or until you can see
grill marks on them
- Remove from the grill and put on a plate
Do not crowd the grill with Kielbasa so the heat can circulate thoroughly. Try not to cut slits into the sausages so that the juices will not run out, thereby losing its flavor.
Pan-frying on a Stove
Pan-frying is another fantastic method to use. It is an excellent way of browning kielbasa alongside other wholesome ingredients.
- 1 teaspoon of oil (olive or vegetable oil)
- Cutting board
- Non-stick pan
- Put the pan on the stove and set the flame to medium
- Add a teaspoon of oil (use minimal oil as kielbasa releases oil during frying)
- Place the Kielbasa on a chopping board and slice into medium-thick pieces with a knife, while the oil is heating up
- Spread the slices into the pan and fry for 7-10 minutes
- Turn continuously with the spatula to prevent burning
- Remove the Kielbasa unto a paper towel to drain out excess oil
- Serve with some chopped-up veggies
Since it is the garlic flavor in Kielbasa that makes it stand out, you have to preserve the flavor by using the best cooking methods available, as outlined above.
Having seen the different methods starting from boiling the raw Kielbasa to baking with an oven, grilling, and also pan-frying, you already have all the information you need to make fantastic kielbasa dishes.
As long as you follow the procedures, it is not difficult or too tasking to have your Kielbasa ready, appealing, and delicious.
You can serve your Kielbasa with sauerkraut, mustard, vegetable salad, rye bread, rice, horseradish, or in a sandwich roll depending on the cooking method used.
Friends and family will ask for a second serving!
If you have some great tips for coking kielbasa, feel free to share them below in the comment box.