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The highlight of this spring crudités platter is a savory Polish farmers cheese dip called Gzik (aka Twarozek) that whips up in just 5 minutes!

gzik with potatoes and fresh vegetables

If you’re ever in a rut thinking of what to bring to a picnic, potluck, or barbecue, a simple crudités platter is usually a good bet! Who doesn’t love fresh seasonal vegetables, right?!

Serve it up with a Polish farmers cheese-based dip, and you’ll have a unique snacking tray people will go crazy for. It’s healthy, refreshing, and perfect finger food for nibbling on. It also makes a lovely brunch, or you can serve it as a light spring or summer meal when it’s too hot to cook!

polish cottage cheese spread with radishes and chives

What is Twarożek?

It’s a light and refreshing farmers cheese dip or spread hails from the Wielkopolska province in west-central Poland. Depending on the region of Poland you’re in, you’ll find this called Gzik or Twarożek.

This is a Polish recipe that features a base of twaróg (or tvorog), which is a soft, creamy cow’s milk cheese known as quark in English. Examples of quark include cottage cheese, farmers cheese, or curd cheese (but don’t confuse curd cheese with cheese curds!). (You can read more about quark on Wikipedia.)

I find that the cottage cheese here in the U.S. is a bit too wet for this recipe, so if you can find farmers cheese, that works best. (I am able to find farmers cheese in the dairy aisle of my regular grocery store!)

This recipe includes a bit of sour cream for tangy flavor and rich, creamy texture. Radishes add earthy, peppery flavor, chives lend mild notes of onion, and salt and pepper season it perfectly. I also like to add a little bit of fresh dill on top to brighten it up.

In Poland, this dish is traditionally served with boiled new potatoes or baked potatoes still in their jackets, which makes it Pyry z Gzikiem. It’s also commonly enjoyed with rye bread, or as part of a spread with Polish sausage (kielbasa), bread, and a variety of raw and pickled vegetables.

Here I served it as part of Polish crudités platter for a beautiful light spring or summer meal.

Ingredients and Substitutions

Ingredients Explained

In this section I explain the ingredients and give substitution ideas where applicable. For the full recipe (including the ingredient amounts), see the recipe card below.

Gzik Ingredients (Polish Farmers Cheese Dip)

gzik ingredients
  • Farmers cheese – Think of farmers cheese as dry curd cottage cheese. It’s essentially the curds with the whey pressed out. It has a creamy, slightly tangy flavor and it’s absolutely delicious.
  • Sour cream – This adds rich creamy texture and bumps up the tangy flavor.
  • Radish – Radishes lend an earthy, piquant flavor and flecks of vibrant fuchsia color.
  • Chive – Chives add a pleasant mild onion flavor and pretty pops of green color.
  • Salt and black pepper – These pantry-staple seasonings add a ton of flavor to this dip.
  • Dill – Fresh dill adds bright flavor.

Crudités Ingredients

The beauty of crudités is that you can use any vegetables you like! You aren’t limited to the vegetables listed here, these are just what I thought would pair well. Feel fee to swap out anything and truly make it your own.

  • Radishes – You can slice radish or trim off the ends and leave them whole.
  • Cucumber – For minimal seeds, use English cucumber (aka Hot House cucumber) or Persian cucumber.
  • Green beans – Or snap peas or snow peas. I just cut or snap off the stem ends and leave them whole.
  • Carrots – I like to look for small carrots and serve them whole (Bugs Bunny-style, lol!).
  • Cornichons – Any type of pickles or pickled vegetables will work.
  • Baby potatoes – This goes against the grain of classic crudités in terms of keeping all the vegetables raw; however, because we’re serving Gzik, I wanted to include potatoes, which are commonly eaten along with this dip in Poland. In the spirit of keeping all the vegetables hand-held (no fork and knife required!), I used baby potatoes (aka new potatoes), and boiled them until tender.
  • Fresh herbs – Such as dill, chives, tarragon, etc.

Instructions

How to Make Twarozek

how to make polish farmers cheese with radish and chives

Crumble the farmers cheese into a bowl. Add the sour cream, radishes, chives, salt, and black pepper, and mix. Serve garnished with dill.

How to Make a Crudités Platter

For the produce, wash and pat it dry. Slice or chop everything so it’s easy to pick up.

If you’re including baby potatoes, add them to a medium saucepan and cover by 2 inches with cold water. Bring the water to a boil, then turn the heat down slightly so it doesn’t boil over, and cook until tender, about 8 minutes. Drain well and pat dry.

Arrange everything on a large platter or tray and serve.

spring vegetable crudite with twarozek
The beautiful cutting board in these photos is from Forest Decor!

Storage

Store Gzik in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 days.

You can prep (wash, dry, and chop) the vegetables up to 2 days ahead of time. Once they’re chopped, store them in an airtight container in the fridge with a damp paper towel inside the container to help keep them from drying out.

cornichons in olive wood bowl as part of crudites platter

Tips

  • Look for farmers cheese in the dairy section of the regular grocery store.
  • If you’re hesitant to try this because radishes aren’t your favorite, this recipe might change your mind! Spicy radishes lend a peppery flavor that cuts through the rich, tangy cheese. Additionally, the creaminess of the cheese mellows the pepperiness of the radishes.
  • Chives add a mild onion flavor that really perks up this dip. If you don’t have chives you can use any type of green onion you have, just make sure to finely chop it.

Special Diet Friendly

As written, this cheese dip recipe is naturally gluten free, low carb, and keto.

What is Crudités?

Crudités is a French dish, typically served as an appetizer, consisting of raw vegetables and a dipping sauce. It’s essentially a French veggie tray! Traditionally the dipping sauce is a simple vinaigrette, but here we’re using a Polish cheese dip to switch things up.

One of the things I love most about this French vegetable platter is that you can swap out the vegetables for what’s in season!

top view of springtime crudites platter

Gzik Recipe FAQs

What is Typically in Gzik?


This traditional Polish dip usually contains farmers cheese, radishes, chives, sour cream, and a touch of salt and pepper to season it. Note that farmers cheese is similar to cottage cheese, but has a more dry, crumbly texture.

Can I Use Cottage Cheese Instead of Farmers Cheese?


Dry curd cottage cheese (also known as farmers cheese) is traditional in Twarozek. Cottage cheese here in the U.S. tends to be on the wet side. However, there are two solutions!

For starters, you could just go ahead and use regular cottage cheese knowing that your end result will be a bit wet. (If you do so, you may want to omit or reduce the added sour cream.) And another option is to strain regular cottage cheese.

To strain cottage cheese, place a fine mesh sieve over a bowl. Line the sieve with cheesecloth (pro tip: coffee filters work well too!), add your cottage cheese and spread it out evenly. Place a piece of plastic wrap on top of the cottage cheese, and add something heavy on top to weight it, such as a can of tomatoes (to help press out as much liquid as possible). Let it sit in the fridge like this for about 12 hours, and then use it.

How Do You Serve Gzik?


You can serve this dip on a veggie tray as an appetizer or snack.

Or enjoy it spread on toast for breakfast or brunch.

Additionally, it’s absolutely delicious served with potatoes (known as Pyry z Gzikiem in Poland) for a light lunch or dinner.

More Polish Recipes to Try

quark cheese dip with vegetables

Let’s Connect

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Crudités Platter with Gzik (Polish Farmers Cheese Dip)

Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time0 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
The highlight of this spring crudités platter is a savory Polish farmers cheese dip called Gzik (aka Twarozek) that whips up in just 5 minutes!

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Ingredients
 

Gzik (Polish Farmers Cheese Dip):

  • 7.5 ounces farmers cheese
  • 3 tablespoons sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons minced radishes
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh chives
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 tablespoon fresh dill for garnish (optional)

Crudités Ideas:

  • Radishes
  • Cucumber
  • Green beans or snap peas or snow peas
  • Carrots
  • Cornichons
  • Baby potatoes boiled until tender and drained
  • Fresh herbs such as dill, chives, tarragon, etc.

Instructions
 

For the Gzik:

  • Crumble the farmers cheese into a bowl. Add the sour cream, radishes, chives, salt, and black pepper, and mix. Serve garnished with dill.

For the Crudités:

  • For the produce, wash and pat it dry. Slice or chop everything so it’s easy to pick up.
  • If you’re including baby potatoes, add them to a medium saucepan and cover by 2 inches with cold water. Bring the water to a boil, then turn the heat down slightly so it doesn’t boil over, and cook until tender, about 8 minutes. Drain well and pat dry.
  • Arrange everything on a large platter or tray. Serve.

Notes

  • Nutrition Information: The nutritional information for this recipe was calculated for the Gzik only, and is based on the recipe making 4 servings. Net carbs for 1 serving are 0.8 grams.
  • Timing: Give yourself 5 to 10 minutes to make the farmers cheese dip, and 20 to 25 minutes to prepare the vegetables for the crudités.
  • Make Ahead: Store Gzik in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 days. You can prep (wash, dry, and chop) the vegetables up to 2 days ahead of time. Once they’re chopped, store them in an airtight container in the fridge with a damp paper towel inside the container to help keep them from drying out.
  • What Vegetables to Use: The beauty of crudités is that you can use any vegetables you like! You aren’t limited to the vegetables listed here, these are just what I thought would pair well. Feel fee to swap out anything and truly make it your own.
  • Baby Potatoes: This goes against the grain of classic crudités in terms of keeping all the vegetables raw; however, because we’re serving Gzik, I wanted to include potatoes, which are commonly eaten along with this dip in Poland. In the spirit of keeping all the vegetables hand-held (no fork and knife required!), I used baby potatoes (aka new potatoes), and boiled them until tender.

Nutrition

Calories: 91kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.4g | Cholesterol: 23mg | Sodium: 365mg | Potassium: 43mg | Fiber: 0.2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 126IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 14mg | Iron: 0.1mg

Nutritional information is automatically calculated and should be used as an approximate.

Course: Appetizer, Brunch
Cuisine: French, Polish
Keyword: Cottage Cheese Dip, Cottage Cheese Spread, Crudités, Crudités Platter, Gzik, Gzik Recipe, Twarożek

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spring crudites platter pin
Faith, author of An Edible Mosaic.
About Faith

I’m the writer, recipe developer, photographer, and food stylist behind this blog. I love finding the human connection through something we all do every day: eat! Food is a common ground that we can all relate to, and our tables tell a story. It’s my goal to inspire you to get in the kitchen, try something new, and find a favorite you didn’t know you had.

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