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If you happen to visit Bulgaria and want to dive into the experience,
you simply must try some of the country’s most iconic dishes.
Most Bulgarian dishes are oven baked, steamed, or in the form of
stew. Deep-frying is not very typical, but grilling - especially
different kinds of meat- is very common.
Pork meat is the most common meat in the Bulgarian cuisine. Then
comes chicken and lamb as well.
A very popular ingredient in Bulgarian cuisine is the Bulgarian white
brine cheese called "sirene“. It is the main ingredient in many
salads, as well as in a variety of pastries.
Another popular ingredient is the unique Bulgarian yoghurt!
o Banitsa is a very tasty meal, served hot or cold, for
breakfast or dinner with yoghurt, ayran, or boza.
o Traditionally, some kismets (lucky charms) are put into the
pastry on some of the national holidays or other occasions
– Christmas, New Year's Eve. They are usually small pieces
of a dogwood branch with a bud - the symbol of health
and longevity. Other wishes are for happiness, health, and
success throughout the new year.
o Banitsa can be made with spinach, apple, pumpkin, and
various other fillings, but the traditional filling is a mixture
of crumbled white cheese, whisked eggs, and butter!
o Tarator is made of yoghurt, cucumbers, garlic and finely
chopped dill. You can put some walnuts as well.
o It is best enjoyed in the summertime when the sun is hot
and blazing. But you can eat it any other time too. It’s
tasty and delicious!
Tarator with lettuce
o It is the salad that defines Bulgaria. Not only is it the
most popular one but it’s also named after a big group
of very frugal people called shopi who live in and near
Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria.
o It can be served as a single meal, as a starter, together
with the main course, after meal, or just as a snack.
o The symphony of the ingredients and the simple oil and
vinegar dressing makes this salad outstanding.
o It’s made of strained yoghurt, finely cucumbers,
vegetable oil, a touch of garlic, all sprinkled with finely
chopped dill and grated walnuts.
o It’s a great appetizer!
o The dictionary definition for mish-mash is “a collection or
mixture of unrelated things; a hodgepodge”. And this is
exactly what it is - a mixture of vegetables, eggs, cheese
and spices that go so well together.
o In Bulgaria, mish-mash is a traditional meal which we
usually prepare for lunch or dinner.
o It is most common during the summer when there is an
abundance of vegetables.
o This dish is named after Panagyurishte, a small town full
of history, one of them - this great recipe.
o In essence it is poached eggs with yoghurt with a little
twist of red pepper and butter.
“tied” panagyurski eggs
o Stuffed peppers are a good alternative for lunch or
dinner. They can be both vegetarian, stuffed with rice
and sometimes walnuts, or stuffed with minced meat
o There is a variant, in which peppers are stuffed with a
mixture of white cheese and herbs, coated with egg and
flour and fried. They’re called “pepper biurek”.
... with minced meat
... with beans and walnuts
o Moussaka is a classic dish with many local and regional
variations. It is a potato-based dish topped with a white
sauce of yoghurt and eggs.
o Its basic ingredients are fairly plain, but the yogurt gives it
a unique, tangy taste. It's surprisingly delicious!
o The same name and recipe is found throughout the lands
that were formerly part of the Ottoman Empire.
oBean soup is a Bulgarian staple. It is an excellent
vegetarian dish, but it can also be spiced up with some
oBean soup in Bulgaria is a "national" dish. Most popular is
the Monastery Version which is totally vegetarian.
o The literal English translation is tripe soup (tripe is the
thick lining of the stomach of cattle... )
o Seasoned with garlic, vinegar, and hot red pepper, it will
surprise you with its unique aroma and taste - good
surprise that is!!!
o The white brined cheese, which is prepared in Bulgaria,
has a specific taste - it is salty, astringent and crumbly.
o The Shopski Style White Cheese is a dish, which is typical
for the region around the capital.
o For preparing that dish there is one important condition
- it must be baked in a small clay vessel (an earthenware
pot), which holds one portion.
o It’s a meatball made of minced meat and spices and
shaped like a sausage. Same as the kyufte (a flat
meatball), but does not contain onions. It has to be grilled.
Lukanka - traditional Bulgarian cold cut
Cheverme - a special dish used for celebrations such as weddings,
graduations and birthdays. It’s a whole animal, traditionally a pig or
Lyutenitsa – a national relish
(to dip or spread)
Roasted lamb with the traditional rice
and spices stuffing
Typical Bulgarian breakfast