I have been extremely blessed to have been educated by the very best West Side Polish cooks, my Busia, (Grandma in Polish) Harriet Czarnecki, Dear friend Sandy Crapsey from 5th St Hall, and my Auntie Margie (Norton) Pintek.  To those outstanding Polish Ladies who took the love and time to educate me I dedicate this business.  Polish cuisine has become a dying art that I wish to preserve.

  Catering for “Private” parties of two, twenty or up to 1000 people.  Weddings, banquets, holidays, graduation parties, or any other occasion you may need to celebrate.   Call for a menu consultation and pricing.

Laura Szczepanek

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Kiełbasa Starowiejska is often served garnished with fried onions, and – in the form of cut pieces – smoked kielbasa can be served cold, hot, boiled, baked or grilled. It can be cooked in soups such as zurek (sour rye soup), kapusniak (cabbage soup), or grochówka (pea soup), baked or cooked with Kapusta, or added to bean dishes, stews , and casseroles.

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Kapusta is braised sauerkraut or cabbage, bacon, mushroom and onion, or garlic. It is seasoned with salt, pepper and sometimes bay leaf, sugar, paprika and apples.

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Golumpki is a cabbage roll common in Polish cuisine made from lightly soft boiled cabbage leaves wrapped around minced pork or beef, chopped onions, and rice or barley baked in a casserole dish in a tomato sauce.

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Chrusciki are a traditional sweet crisp pastry made out of dough that has been shaped into thin twisted ribbons, deep-fried and sprinkled with powdered sugar. Sometimes called polish love knots.

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3rd generation Polish cook to open authentic Polka Pops Café on Grand Rapids West Side

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — Outside of Pulaski Days, where does one find homemade chruscikis or lamb cakes on a menu in Grand Rapids?

Laura Szczepanek decided it was about time to answer that question.

Szczepanek, who has been catering Polish food since she was “knee high to my Busia” is opening an authentic Polish restaurant in the coming weeks on (where else?) the West Side of Grand Rapids.

The Polka Pops Café, located at 634 Stocking Ave. NW, will soft launch with limited hours in the former Marc Stewart’s Guest House space on Nov. 11, with a formal grand opening celebration following the holidays in January.

“Nobody around here is doing Polish food the right way,” she said, although there are Polish meats available at several West Side markets.

“There are so many people that love Polish food. During Christmas I just get so busy,” she said. “There’s a huge demand for it or I wouldn’t even attempt it.


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Dziekuja Bardzo!

Here is the Pulaski Weekend line up! Don’t forget Friday at noon I will be live on TV 13 Cooking my Dill Pickle Soup!  I will be in the parade on the Polka Pops float since I am a DJ on the air. But most important come see us at 5th Street hall Thurs thru Sunday, Come Sunday after church! I look forward to seeing all of you.  I will be in the upstairs kitchen but of course floating all over the place.

Have a Safe but fun Pulaski Weekend my friends!

Laura Szczepanek

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