Bread baked on cabbage leaves

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Staropolski chleb

The " bread baked on wood and cabbage leaf" refers to a tradition that was particularly strong during the Polish interwar political movement of sanation (from the latin sanatio – which means healing), although the earliest information about this baking method can be found in the 1860s. This movement, formed by intellectuals and militaries of all political sides sought to put an end to the strong corruption of the political class at the time.

Due to the complicated method of baking, the product has nearly disappeared. Today, there is only one producer who makes the traditional sanation bread baked on wood and cabbage leaf.
In the Podkarpackie region, where the bread is still baked, the folk methods have not changed. Old dishes and utensils like ovens from fired clay bricks and round wicker baskets, which give the loaves their traditional shape and texture, are used. The bread is baked on the hearth – directly on the hot brick oven on cabbage leaves and pipe wood. The preparation of proper wood is time-consuming, for it takes around 5 months from felling the trees to the adequate drying.
The dough is made from rye flour with a small amount of wheat flour. The flour comes from the local farmers and is stored in pine boxes. After being mixed and leavened, the dough is set aside. Then, ground cumin can be added along with buttermilk to loosen the dough and grated cooked potatoes, which prolong the durability of the bread. After being baked, the bread has to be set aside for several hours.

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Bread and baked goods

Nominated by:Anna Kałamarz