One of the best ways to experience a different culture is through food, which is why Comic Kitchen exists. The segment is dedicated to creating a three-course meal around a character from pop culture and telling their story through the magic of food. Over the past few months I’ve developed a taste for Polish food, so I’ve teamed up with the staff from Platzki in Manchester to create a menu for Geralt of Rivia. Geralt is a Polish icon, with The Witcher series being one of the greatest fantasy series of all time. Geralt is a man of few words and simple tastes, so the menu taps into traditional Polish food as a reflection of the Witcher’s approach to life.
Starter – Pierogi
Geralt has spent his life hunting and killing monsters, so he’d have to eat big portions in order to get the energy he needs to do his job. A plate of pierogis is an ideal starter for The White Wolf. Pierogis are a traditional Polish delicacy that have a savoury taste. The dumplings are made from dough and they can have a range of fillings. Pierogis could be stuffed with cheese, sauerkraut, potato or beef.
Pierogis were traditionally seen as peasant food and Geralt would be used to seeing them on his travels across The Continent. I’d imagine Geralt having a taste for meat filled pierogi because they would be high in protein. He’d sit down in a village inn and help himself, perhaps even mixing the food with a shot of vodka. Nostrovia!
The versatility of pierogi makes for an amazing dish and the Platzki variety are some of the best around.
Main Course – Golonka
Meat is a big part of Polish cuisine and I’d see it being a staple part of Geralt’s diet. After a long day of travelling through the wilderness he’d want to settle down for the evening in front of an open fire and eat a filling meal. Golonka, also known as Polish pork knuckle, would be the kind of main course the Witcher would go for because of its practicality and rustic taste. Golonka is a traditional dish served in Polish taverns.
Cooking pork knuckle takes time because it consists of a lot of skin and tendons. Usually, the meat is cooked through stewing or braising, which really brings out the flavour. Geralt is a practical person and if he’d hunted an animal for its meat, then he’d probably end up using every part of it in order to maximise the portions. The tender taste of the Golonka would make for a delicious meal and help Geralt prepare for his next battle.
Dessert – Sernik
Geralt strikes me as someone who enjoys desserts as a guilty pleasure and one of the best Polish treats to have is sernik. Polish cheesecake is traditionally made with twarog, a kind of dry curd cheese that’s favoured by farmers. After eating big plates of meat, the sweetness of the sernik would give Geralt a different kind of flavour. I could imagine him sitting down with Yennefer for a romantic meal and the two of them sharing slices of the cheesecake.
Sernik has an elegance and simplicity to it that makes it one of the most common Polish desserts. The Platzki team came up with sernik that’s covered in blueberries and strawberries. The fruit provides a dose of healthiness, finishing off a beautiful dessert.
I’d like to give a big thank you to Lukasz and Przemek for collaborating on Comic Kitchen and helping to come up with the Geralt of Rivia menu. Platzki is a brilliant place to eat because they regularly update their menu to provide modern twists on traditional Polish cuisine. If you’re ever in Manchester then I’d recommend stopping by to try the food. Be sure to check their menu out on Facebook and Instagram.