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Powidla from Poland
Place of originBohemia
Main ingredientsPrune plums

Powidl (also porvidl, powidla, povidla, or powidel) is a fruit spread, prepared from the prune plum, that is popular in Central Europe. Unlike jam or marmalade, and unlike the German Pflaumenmus (plum puree), powidl is prepared without additional sweeteners or gelling agents.

Powidl is cooked for several hours, in order to achieve the necessary sweetness and consistency. The plums used should be harvested as late as possible, ideally after the first frosts, in order to ensure they contain enough sugar.

In Austria, Moravia and Bohemia, powidl is the basis for Buchteln, powidl cake and Germknödel, but it is also used as a sandwich spread. Powidl will keep for a long time, especially if kept in traditional crockery.

Traditionally, large amounts of powidl to be used as a winter store and natural sweetener were prepared in late autumn during a communal event. Since constantly stirring the pot was exhausting work, people took turns, and did easier work in between turns. The Czech term povidla is plural only (the Polish word powidła as well).

Traditionally the plums were "overcooked," (to promote evaporation) in a copper kettle, or sometimes vinegar preserved, or even steamed.[1] One recipe for "dark red plum jam" (povidl) begins with placing the plums in a fermentation crock along with sugar and cider vinegar, and letting the mixture sit for a day before cooking.[2] Another recipe for "traditional Austrian plum butter" recommends roasting the plums in an oven and then transforming that compote-like dish into jam.[3]

Cooking down the fruit for povidla made in Czechia

Powidl is a key ingredient of the popular Austrian street food pofesen, which is a jam-filled form of French toast.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Hernik, Józef; Walczycka, Maria; Sankowski, Edward; Harris, Betty J. (2021-12-08). Cultural Heritage—Possibilities for Land-Centered Societal Development. Springer Nature. p. 66. ISBN 978-3-030-58092-6.
  2. ^ Farmers and Gardeners of Centre Terre Vivante (2007). Preserving food without freezing or canning: traditional techniques using salt, oil, sugar, alcohol, vinegar, drying, cold storage, and lactic fermentation. Foreword by Deborah Madison (New ed.). White River Junction, Vermont: Chelsea Green Pub. p. 140. ISBN 978-1-933392-59-2. OCLC 122280218.
  3. ^ Thample, Rachel De (2019-10-03). Gifts from the Modern Larder: Homemade Presents to Make and Give. Octopus. ISBN 978-0-85783-830-8.
  4. ^ Kraig, Bruce; Sen, Colleen Taylor (2013). Street Food around the World: An Encyclopedia of Food and Culture. ABC-CLIO. p. 30. ISBN 978-1-59884-955-4.