Croatian food: 10 meals you must taste

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The culinary traditions of the Mediterranean region, Central Europe, and the Balkans all have a significant impact on Croatian cuisine, which results in a delectable fusion of flavors. The following is a selection of delicacies and specialties that guests visiting Croatia shouldn’t leave the country without having tried at least once:

Peka

 A traditional Croatian dish, peka consists of meat (usually lamb or veal) and vegetables slow-cooked under a metal bell covered with hot embers. This cooking method results in tender, flavorful meats and vegetables infused with aromatic herbs.

Ćevapi

These grilled, skinless sausages made from a mixture of minced beef and lamb are a popular street food item in Croatia. Served with freshly baked lepinja bread and condiments like ajvar (red pepper relish) and kajmak (clotted cream), they make for a delicious and satisfying meal.

Octopus Salad

A refreshing and light dish, octopus salad features tender octopus marinated in olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, and parsley. It is often served as an appetizer or as a side dish with grilled seafood.

Black Risotto (Crni Rizot)

This unique dish is made with cuttlefish or squid ink, giving the rice a deep black color and a distinctive flavor. It is typically cooked with garlic, onions, white wine, and fish or seafood stock, resulting in a rich and flavorful risotto.

Pasticada:

Hailing from the region of Dalmatia, pasticada is a slow-cooked beef stew marinated in red wine and vinegar, infused with flavors of bacon, garlic, and aromatic spices. It is often served with homemade gnocchi or a traditional Croatian pasta called njoki.

Strukli

A beloved Croatian dish, strukli is a type of rolled pastry filled with various ingredients, such as cottage cheese, sour cream, and eggs. It can be served as a savory dish, baked with cheese and cream, or as a sweet dessert, sprinkled with powdered sugar and cinnamon.

Fritule

These small, doughnut-like pastries are a popular Croatian treat, especially during festive occasions like Christmas and Carnival. They are flavored with lemon zest and often contain raisins or brandy. Fritule are usually dusted with powdered sugar for a sweet finishing touch.

Soparnik

Originating from the region of Dalmatia, soparnik is a traditional savory pie made with a thin dough filled with chard, garlic, olive oil, and salt. It is baked in a wood-fired oven, resulting in a crispy, flavorful crust and a delicious combination of flavors.

Rozata

A Croatian take on crème caramel or flan, rozata is a creamy dessert made with eggs, sugar, milk, and caramel syrup. It is often infused with flavors like lemon zest, vanilla, or local liqueurs such as Maraschino.

Croatian Wines

Croatia has a long history of winemaking and produces a wide variety of high-quality wines. From the robust reds of the Pelješac Peninsula to the crisp whites of the Istrian region, exploring Croatian wines is a must. Look out for indigenous grape varieties like Plavac Mali, Malvazija, and Graševina.

These are only a few of the mouthwatering culinary treats Croatia has to offer.

During your visit, don’t miss the chance to sample these traditional foods and discover the wide range of tastes that make up Croatian cuisine.

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