Home Polish Food Main Courses and Sides Mizeria Salad - Cucumbers in Sour Cream

Mizeria - Cucumbers in Sour Cream Recipe PDF Print E-mail
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Thursday, 26 April 2012 16:45

Recipe by: Barbara Rolek

mizeria, cucumber, salad, sour creamThe Polish name for cucumbers in sour cream is "mizeria" literally meaning "misery," referring to the dish being conceived by peasants, who were nicknamed "the miserable ones" by the have-gots! See the legend below.

This delightful, cooling salad is anything but "misery." It's a great accompaniment to pork, ham, chicken, fish, just about anything. Choose thin cucumbers with small seeds or the seedless variety. Dress this just before serving so the dish doesn't become watery. That's another reason my family doesn't use vinegar -- it waters down the dressing -- but it's a classic component of the dish.

Makes 4 servings

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes


  • 1 large cucumber with or without seeds, washed and trimmed
  • Salt
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons white vinegar (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill


Note:Legend has it this dish was a favorite of Queen Bona Sforza, an Italian princess who married Polish King Sigismund I in the 16th century. Homesick for her native Italy where cucumbers were common, everytime she ate it, it made her cry. Hence the Polish word for "misery," derived from the Latin.
  1. Run a channel knife or fork down the length of the cucumbers to produce a pretty edge, and slice thinly. Place in a colander over a bowl to catch the juices and salt the cukes liberally. Allow to stand for 30 minutes.
  2. In a small bowl, mix remaining ingredients. Pat cucumbers dry and place in a medium bowl. Add the dressing and toss with the cucumber slices. Season to taste with salt and black pepper. Chill and sprinkle with additional dill, if desired, before serving.

Source: easteuropeanfood.about.com. Author: Barbara Rolek All rights reserverd. Photo copyright © Barbara Rolek

Last Updated on Thursday, 26 April 2012 17:25
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