Saturday, April 14, 2012

Polish Kitchen

Polish Kitchen is a food cart located at the Q-19 food pod (NW 19th and Quimby) in Portland, Oregon. Admittedly, I had arrived at the pod to try a couple of other carts, but both were closed on my visit. Since I hadn't had Polish food in a while, I decided to try this cart out.

An elderly man -- probably of Polish descent -- worked the cart. There was a noticeable language barrier, which made even the slightest communication a challenge. While preparing my food, he answered a phone call in a foreign language, which I didn't really bother to eavesdrop on. Heck, I wouldn't understand anything anyway. I assume it was Polish or another European language from that part of the continent.

The menu features traditional European dishes from the Polish, Hungarian, and Czech regions. This time, I went with chicken paprikash ($6), which is really a Hungarian stew, but it works for me. Red bell peppers and mushrooms were among the sea of ingredients to complement the hand-pulled dark-meat chicken pieces. As the name implies, paprika is used to give the dish its orange-red color. A pleasing dish, subtle in flavor. I think the stew could have been thickened just a little more.

I arrived around 11:30, yet the man told me the rice wasn't ready. He offered a roll instead, but I was fine with a double order of refreshing salad. Salt and pepper on the salad, while probably not a person's first choice for flavoring such a side dish, worked for me.

Chicken Paprikash w/double order of salad
(Polish Kitchen)
Overall, I'd say this was just OK. The dish was nicely prepared, and I appreciated the granting of my last-minute double salad substitution request. The meal just lacked the explosive, palate-pleasing flavors I crave. 6/10

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