A shredded potato flatbread wrapped around a serving of savory, paprika-laced beef goulash spells … Polish taco.
One of my favorite Polish spots in Greenpoint is Happy End, an ancient lunch counter just north of the Saint Anthony of Padua Cathedral. There’s a room in front with a snaking counter with stools along it. In the back, find a small dining room, with a TV near the ceiling tuned to Spanish-language cable. Why? Who knows.
After eating there regularly for years, I finally stumbled on the entrée called potato pancake with goulash. I’d never ordered it before, due to the excellence of the place’s smoked kielbasy, and their potato-cheese pierogies.
When it arrived, my friends and I let out small gasps — it looked exactly like some sort of rustic mutant taco. A potato pancake much bigger and thinner than most had been wrapped around a serving of all-meat goulash, maybe more like a southern Mexican quesadilla with a hand-patted masa wrapper than a taco. The texture of the pancake was crisp and squishy at the same time, the meat stew garlicky and mellow. Accompanied by a cloud of sour cream, it was a steal at $8, which also included a trio of salads virtually indistinguishable from each other.
Of course, we had the kielbasy, too, and a couple dozen pierogies. What a meal, and it ended up costing only $32 for all of us. Even if you don’t live around there, Happy End is well worth the trek.
924 Manhattan Avenue
The kielbasy at Happy End is a real treat.
Aftermath of a Polish meal
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