Bulgaria is one of the last remaining gems of Europe that has avoided mass tourism and offers visitors a real sense of the country’s history. It is also a natural wonder with numerous world heritage sites, beaches and incredible food. With the upcoming Olympics, this beautiful Balkan country is getting even more attention and is sure to be a hot spot for tourists. It is important that we take stereotypical themes about Bulgarians with a grain of salt and understand that just like any culture, it’s best to approach them with open mind and respect.
One of the most popular dishes in Bulgaria is lyutenitsa. It is a hearty stew made of potatoes and cheese, which can be served both warm or cold. It is very popular at home, but has become increasingly popular in restaurants as well. Lyutenitsa can be found in many different variations, but all of them are delicious and full of nutrients!
This popular dish is usually accompanied by supa topcheta, which is a hearty soup. This soup is incredibly rich and full of veggies, which make it perfect for winter. It is made with a variety of vegetables, including carrots, leeks, celery, and onions. It is often flavored with garlic, and spices such as paprika and thyme. This dish is very common in Bulgaria and can be found in other countries in the Balkans as well!
Another popular salad in Bulgaria is ovcharska salata, which is similar to Shopska salata but with the addition of mushrooms and ham. This salad is typically tossed in vegetable oil and left to rest for a few minutes. It is then ready to be eaten! This salad is a great alternative to the more common tarator, but it’s equally as tasty.
A popular fish soup in Bulgaria is ribena chorba, which is a very hearty soup with chunks of different types of fish and lots of veggies cooked in a fish broth. It is commonly seasoned with herbs such as tarragon, lovage, bay leaves, and parsley. It is also a very popular dish on Christmas Eve in Bulgaria, as it symbolizes good luck.
Banitsa are stuffed vine leaves or cabbage, which are filled with minced meat and rice. It is then wrapped in phyllo pastry, which can be sweet or savoury. The most popular version is with spinach (spanachena banitsa) and the dessert variant is with milk (mlechna banitsa).
This dish is known to be a good hangover cure, which makes it very popular among students! It is a very hearty and comforting dish, which can be enjoyed with supa topcheta or a slice of fresh bread. Bulgarians usually enjoy it with a glass of wine! This traditional dish is a must-try for anyone visiting Bulgaria.