International Recipes and Cooking Around the World


Mizeria (Polish cucumber and sour cream salad)

(Polish cucumber and sour cream salad)

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Mizeria is a cooling salad of cucumbers, dill and sour cream that is very popular in Poland. The name means "misery" in Polish, and legend has it that the dish was first served by poor — hence miserable — peasants.

3 to 4 servings


  • Cucumber, peeled and thinly sliced -- 1 or 2
  • Salt -- 2 or 3 teaspoons
  • Sour cream -- 1/2 cup
  • Lemon juice -- 2 or 3 tablespoons
  • Fresh dill, chopped -- 2 tablespoons
  • Salt and pepper -- to taste


  1. Mix the cucumber and salt together in a large bowl and set aside for 15 to 20 minutes. Rinse the cucumbers in a colander to remove excess salt and squeeze dry.
  2. In a large bowl, mix the cucumbers together with the rest of the ingredients. Adjust seasoning and serve well chilled.

Mizeria Variations

  • Substitute yogurt for some or all of the sour cream if you like.
  • Add some thinly sliced radishes for added color and a bit of spice.

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