Dining Around Eastern Europe

goulash1aFrom comfort food to spicy meals and everything in between, Eastern European cuisine offers a taste of the exotic. Discover rich, time-tested recipes with interesting flavor combinations that will both surprise and delight your whole family.

Here, we present common and traditional food and drink from different Eastern European countries (See our article on foods from Western Europe, too).

While not comprehensive, the dish selection provides an overview for country specific preferences, and hopefully, some motivation for creative cooking in your kitchen.

View our selections, and you might find a new favorite dish or — at least, a fast fact for your next game of Trivial Pursuit.

P.S. Enjoy!

Czech Republic:

beef with cream and cranberries, garlic potato pancakes, breaded carp, dill soup, roast pork and dumplings, sauerkraut (red or white) with cream, fried Edam cheese with potatoes, wild boar, strawberry dumplings, buchty (soft buns filled with poppy seed or plum jam).

Drink(s): Pilsner Urquell, Budweiser (the original), Becherovka (bitter sweet herbal liquor), Moravian regional wines.

Croatia:

stuffed green peppers with tomato sauce, stuffed cabbage rolls, scampi buzara (with oil, garlic, and wine), Primosten style chicken (with prosciutto, tomatoes, and potatoes), peppery fish stew, goulash (beef stew), fresh fish and crab, francuska salata (cold salad with peas, carrots, potato, mayonnaise), crème caramel, fritters (fried twisted dough with powdered sugar).

Drink(s): Zinfandel, Istria regional wines, Tomislav beer (dark), Karlovasco beer

Estonia:

black bread (rye), blood sausage, jellied or fried pork, rosolje (meat, herring, beets and potato salad), räim (Baltic herring), smoked flounder, sour sorrel soup, rhubarb pie, pancakes with cottage cheese and berries, karask (sweet cake made with sour cream).

Drinks: Tall Blond vodka, kali (low alchohol rye beer), Saku and A. Le Coq Premium (beers)

Hungary:

chicken paprikash (stewed with dumplings), fried goose liver, beef goulash (with potatoes), breaded Lake Balaton perch, noodles with cottage cheese and sour cream, veal in paprika sauce, cabbage rolls (with beef and tomato sauce), rétes (pastry filled with poppy seed or apple), Somló sponge cake (with chocolate sauce and rum), cold cherry soup.

Drink(s): Tokaji wine (dessert), muscatels (muscat wines), Dreher beer, Egri Bikaver (red wine)

Lithuania:

skilandis (prepared, smoked pork), pickled herring, kibinai (meat and onion pastry), cold beet soup, cepelinai or zeppelins (potato dumpling filled with beef and mushrooms), smoked eel, kugelis (potato, bacon, egg casserole), Šakotis (sweet towering cake), Napoleonas torte (butter cream, vanilla and lemon), chrustai (twisted fried dough with powered sugar)

Drinks: Midus (mead), Utenos and Svyturys Baltijos (beers), Krupnika (honey liquor)

Poland:

borsch soup (beet root), breaded pork cutlet, potato cheese pierogi (filled dumpling), wild mushroom soup, stuffed cabbage rolls (with pork), filled baked potato (egg and cream), Kielbasa sausage, poppy seed cake, plum-filled potato dumplings, sweet omelet filled with cottage cheese and fruit.

Drink(s): Żywiec, Okocim, EB (beers), Chopin and Belvedere (vodkas)

Romania:

grilled carp in brine, meatball soup, ghiveci (vegetable medley in oil), mititei (hamburger shaped as sausage links), sour lamb soup, surgeon, cornbread (with sour cream and cheese), muschi poiana (mushroom bacon-filled beef in vegetable puree), cottage cheese donuts, Dobos torta (carmel-topped sponge cake).

Drink(s): tuica (plum brandy), vişinată (cherry liquor), secărică (caraway brandy), Ursus beer

Slovenia:

pork sausage, baked mushrooms with muenster cheese, cold dandelion salad (with potato, egg), Adriatic bluefish, buckwheat dumplings, venison, vipava stew (smoked meat), cheese strudel, potica (dense sweet walnut roll), gibanica (pastry filled with cottage cheese, nuts or apples).

Drink(s): Union, Laško (beers), šabesa (elderflower drink), slivovec (plum brandy), Styria regional wines

Turkey:

kadayif

döner kebab (spicy lamb), falafel (spicy chick pea balls), baked borek (thin pastries of cheese and minced meet, spinach and potato), bulgur salad (cold lemony), cacik (yogurt cucumber soup with mint and oil), Baba ghanoush (eggplant salad), kadayif (syrup baked pastry filled with pistachio, walnuts or cream), Turkish delight (sweet gelatin candy), milk pudding with orange or rosewater, fig or apricot compote with cream.

Drink(s): Turkish coffee (with cardamom), raki (anise flavored apéritif), ayran (salted yogurt drink), salgam (purple carrot and turnip drink)

Ukraine:

kapusniak (sauerkraut soup), borsch soup (beet root), chicken Kiev (herb butter, breaded roll), varenyky (sweet or savory dumplings with sour cream or butter), holubtsi (cabbage rolls with meat, rice, tomato sauce), stuffed goose with apples, grilled shish kebab (lamb and vegetables in vinegar), pork with beets, zhele (jellied fruits), babka (casserole of cheese, apple, rice, spices and egg), pampushky (filled donuts)

Drinks: kvas (low alchohol rye beer), kissel (sweet and tart cooked), kefir (milk fermented with yeast), Crimean wines, Arsenal and Obolon (dark) beers.