SOUTH BOHEMIAN POTATO CASSEROLECzech name: Jihočeský pekáček
Written by Denisa Cinadrova
The South Bohemian Region is defined by eight districts – Ceske Budejovice, Cesky Krumlov, Jindrichuv Hradec, Pelhrimov, Pisek, Prachatice, Strakonice, and Tabor. The seat of the Region is the Statutory City of Ceske Budejovice. The South Bohemia is known for its many ponds and picturesque villages. Sumava National Park is the largest protected natural area of this region.
If we look at the traditional dishes of our Czech ancestors, the history of this region is so extensive that it is very difficult to describe in a few words. Meals certainly depended on what was most accessible to people. First, there are the above-mentioned potatoes and cereals, and also cabbage and legumes. A staple of the diet was necessarily bread. Dried fruit was also very popular. Of course, there was no fish in the menu, as fish meat was considered a cheap food and was therefore available to poor people. Other available meals included various porridges, mushrooms in several dishes, and hearty soups.
Potatoes are indispensable in many recipes, but they can be used just as sides. It is almost impossible to believe that this domesticated crop hasn’t had been cultivated in our lands from the very beginning. It became widespread among the general population thanks to Empress Maria Theresa, who imported it to Bohemia after famine in the 18th century.
2 1/2 lbs potatoes
1 1/2 cups sauerkraut
1 1/2 cups smoked meat
1 1/2 cup sour cream
2 Tbs salt
1 Tbs caraway seeds
lard for the baking pan
First, peel and chop the potatoes and rinse the sauerkraut. Then cook the smoked meat and cut it into cubes. Next, grease a baking pan and put half the potatoes in it. Then add the salt, caraway seeds, sauerkraut, and smoked meat in the pan. Next, put a second layer of potatoes on the other ingredients. Finally, add additional salt and cumin to the dish and cover it with sour cream before baking it in a preheated oven at 360F-400F.