Polish cuisine is a style of cooking and food preparation originating in or widely popular in Poland. Meat is an important part of the Polish diet. Pork is the most popular meat, and the most commonly eaten meat dish is a fried, breaded pork cutlet served with thick sauce. Beef, ham, and sausage are also eaten regularly. The meat stew called bigos is often called the national dish of Poland. Other famous Polish dishes are golabki (cabbage leaves stuffed with ground meat and rice) and golonka (fresh ham served with horse-radish). Poles also like to eat smoked and pickled fish, especially herring.
Most Polish meals start with one of Poland's many soups. These range from clear broth to thick soup so hearty it could be a meal in itself. The best known is the beet soup called borscht.
Poles love desserts, especially cakes. Popular cakes include cheesecake, sponge cake, poppy seed cake, and a pound cake called babka. Special cakes are baked for feast days and weddings.
Popular beverages include coffee, tea, milk, buttermilk, and fruit syrup and water. However, vodka distilled from rye is known as the national drink.