Culinary culture at its purest …
Please forget everything you have heard, read or eaten in connection with Bulgaria and what is referred to as Balkan cuisine.
Sit back, relax and read what is actually in store for you when you are treated to the true national delicacies…
Like the down-to-earth, proud nature of its people, Bulgaria’s independent culinary culture has its roots in its own original, rustic cuisine.
In fact, nothing can rival Bulgaria’s culinary history, dating back over 2,000 years: stemming traditionally from Mediterranean, Greek gastronomic culture and perfected through the course of history by Ottoman and Asiatic influences, today it offers a rich variety of fascinating taste sensations.
This culinary treasure trove, brimming with traditional Bulgarian culinary delights, stands in readiness to guide gourmets on where and what to eat,
only open after a large space ....
European culinary historians attempt at least in some respects to draw comparisons with Bavarian cuisine.
The striking parallel here is allowing national culinary tradition to be enriched rather than influenced by geographical and cultural neighbours and political events.
And the housewife and landlady of ‘Old Bavaria’ (Altbayern) incorporated elegant French dishes such as ragout, fricassée and boeuf à la mode (“Böfflamott”) into traditional Bavarian cuisine. Similarly, the Bulgarian cook made the best of whatever came her way – not always willingly, as in the time of the Ottoman occupation…
Bulgarian cuisine (Bulgarian: áúëãàðñêà êóõíÿ, bulgarska kuhnya) is a representative of the cuisine of Southeastern Europe. Essentially South Slavic, it shares characteristics with other Balkans cuisines. Owing to the relatively warm climate and diverse geography affording excellent growth conditions for a variety of vegetables, herbs and fruits, Bulgarian cuisine is diverse.
Famous for its rich salads required at every meal, Bulgarian cuisine is also noted for the diversity and quality of dairy products and the variety of Bulgarian wines and local alcoholic drinks such as rakia, mastika and menta. Bulgarian cuisine features also a variety of hot and cold soups, an example of a cold soup being tarator. There are many different Bulgarian pastries as well such as banitsa.
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 meats - is very common. Pork meat is the most common meat in the Bulgarian cuisine. Oriental dishes do exist in Bulgarian cuisine with most common being moussaka, gyuvetch, and baklava. A very popular ingredient in Bulgarian cuisine is the Bulgarian white brine cheese called "sirene" (ñèðåíå). It is the main ingredient in many salads, as well as in a variety of pastries. Fish and chicken are widely eaten and while beef is less common as most cattle are bred for milk production rather than meat, veal is a natural byproduct of this process and it is found in many popular recipes. Bulgaria is a net exporter of lamb and its own consumption of the meat is prevalent during its production time in spring.
Traditionally Bulgarians have consumed a notable quantity of yoghurt per head and is noted historically for the production of high quality yoghurt, including using a unique variety of micro-organism called Lactobacillus bulgaricus in the manufacturing process. It has even been claimed that yoghurt originates from Bulgaria. Though this cannot be substantiated, Bulgaria has been part of a region that has cultivated and consumed yoghurt from as far back as 3000 BC.
Certain entries, salads, soups and dishes go well with alcoholic beverages and the alcohol of choice for some is Bulgarian wine.