Where to eat, food and drink Serbia
Serbian cuisine mixes a large number ofinfluences inherited from its various past invaders : Slavic and traditional continental, it is marked by a certain Austro-Hungarian know-how, but also, to a lesser extent, by the habits of the Mediterranean and oriental influences. The Ottomans left their mark there, the Greeks and Bulgarians too.
Most Serbs start the day with a big breakfast that lends itself well to the body. On the program: full-bodied coffee (Turkish style) or tea, bread, cheese, salami, sausages, kaymak (sour milk cream), eggs ...
By this time, some are already heading to pastries or buregdjinitsi to order one or two burek, kinds of turnovers (delicacies) of Turkish origin filled with minced meat with onions, sometimes mushrooms, apples or sour cherries. We speak of gibanitsa when they are made with cheese, zeljanitsa with spinach and krompirusa with potatoes. Often eaten with yogurt, bureks make an easy and inexpensive snack anytime, like local fast food. They are often sold by weight. In Serbia, the city of Niš is the most famous in this area.
Another option: the proja, cornbread served with kajmak, cheese and / or yogurt.
The midday meal is generally light on weekdays, but plentiful, even pantagruelic, on weekends. In classy restaurants, plan to spend time: you will need it to eat as much as your neighbors at the table!
Ham, sausages, peppers (punjene paprike) and vine or cabbage leaves stuffed with minced meat and rice (sarma) are served as appetizers. In winter, soups arrive, with vegetables (corbe), in which lamb, chicken or pork bathe, you will find sausages on every street corner, pljeskavitsa (onion burgers), vechalitsa (smoked meat) and others cevapchini (kebabs). Barbecue here, barbecue there! At the restaurant, the same fight, but presented with all the finery, especially in the inns with old blackened beams and syrupy musicians.
Other classics: the Musaka, djuvetch (fried peppers and tomatoes with meat and onions), the goulash Hungarian style Wiener schnitzel in German, the Stuffed eggplant (punjene tikvitse), grilled corn on the cob. In the curiosity department: grilled tripe on the barbecue! Now, reassure the anti-viandards. There are also fish, carp, perch and trout, especially near the Danube. The river being quite polluted, it's up to you, however, if you really want to stick to it ...
The dishes are generally not very spicy. Only pepper and paprika are regularly used, as is ajvar to spice up grilled meats - a paste of peppers with a beautiful orange color, which is also simply spread on black bread with creamy cheese. Potatoes, sauerkraut and polenta (kacamak) often come on the side.
To finish the meal, the choices will mainly focus on cakes and pastries: baklava et halva inherited from the Ottomans (but less sweet), shtrudla close to German strudels and other black forests descending straight from the Austrian heights… Floating island (chnenokle), rice pudding, compotes and tufahije (apples cooked with walnuts) complete the panorama.
The Serbian drinks well, and he brags about it! In the bistros, everyone is at the beer (pivo), served in a bottle (33 or 50 cl), rarely on tap (tocheno). Blondes are much more common than brunettes. Some of the most popular brands include Jelen (hello hangover!), MB, and Montenegrin favorite Nikcitsko (more expensive). Very popular, the Belgrade Beer Fest attracts more than half a million visitors to the capital every summer. We drink as many liters of beer there!
To welcome you, we will instead offer you a raki (rakija), a brandy distilled from different fruits. Each has a different name: slivovitsa (plum), lozovatcha (grape), jabukovatsa (apple), etc.
Note that Serbia also produces wine. The tradition dates back at least to Roman times. What is it worth? It depends on the regions and the farms. Given the winter temperatures, it is better to bet on the whites: the Fruska Gora from the Danube Valley and the Zupsko from Alexandrovac are doing well. Some rosés are pleasant, but most of the reds are heavy, without distinction.
For the more sober, local mineral water, fruit juices, yoghurts and kefir are available everywhere.
La muzzle is a drink made from corn and the kvas, very slightly alcoholic, is obtained from barley or distilled rye flour.
There is little tea (especially herbal teas), but the coffee essential. It is served Turkish style, rich and thick. Let the grounds settle.