Monday Meal Review: Bulgaria

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"Where's the beef?" said Keith's dad, wide eyed. In all his sixty-plus years on earth, this was probably his first vegetarian meal. Ever. What can I say. He's Oklahoma, through and through. Six months ago, I would have been nervous about putting this feast in front of him. I'd probably have served a platter beef on the side. Heck, I who am I kidding. The entire meal would have been a meat-lover's delight. I'm a people-pleaser, to the max. But eating food around the world has changed … [Read more...]

Recipe: Iced Fruit Drink (Kompot)

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Makes 3-4 liters Many eastern European countries enjoy Kompot all year round. This sweet, chilled drink is refreshing on a hot summer's day and, in the winter, Bulgarian children enjoy kompot as part of the Christmas celebration. Feel free to use your favorite fruit to make this recipe your own. Mint could even be added for fresh flavor. When serving, be sure to give everyone a few bits of fruit at the bottom of their glass! Ingredients: 10 cups water 1 cup sugar 6 oz prunes 4 oz … [Read more...]

Recipe: Roasted Eggplant & Bell Pepper Dip (Kyopolou)

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Serves 4-6 Kyopolou melds roasted, sweet peppers, eggplant, and ripe tomatoes to make a dipping sensation. Serve with pita bread or alongside white fish. Be sure to prepare a day ahead (or at least several hours) so that the flavors can properly distribute. Otherwise the garlic will be too sharp and bitter. If you simply must serve this dish right away, use less garlic. Ingredients: 3 eggplants 4 red bell peppers 3 tomatoes (I used roma) 2-5 cloves garlic fresh parsley, … [Read more...]

Recipe: Chilled Cucumber Soup (Tarator)

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Serves 4 Is your air conditioner busted? No problem - you'll be cool as a cucumber as you sip on chilled Bulgarian cucumber & yogurt soup (Tarator). ┬áHeck, take a bath in it. All that yogurt and cucumber has to be good for the skin. Right? Although many people enjoy this soup with little pieces of cucumbers, I liked it extra vevelty smooth. If you would like the texture, reserve half a cucumber and thinly slice it. I'd do half moons, or even smaller. Ingredients 2 small … [Read more...]

Video Saturday: Bulgaria

Happy Saturday! In this video you will take a virtual tour of Bulgaria's varied landscape, described by the narrator as a "piece of paradise." Just beware the string bikini in the middle. Yikes. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WC5HZ00MgkU&feature=related httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WC5HZ00MgkU&feature=related … [Read more...]

Fun Fact Friday: Bulgaria (with Poll)

Photo Courtesy of The Bulgarian National Museum of History

It's a beautiful morning here in Tulsa. The birds are chirping, the sky is blue, and Keith got up with the baby last night! Here's a few fun facts ... Bulgarian Rose oil Bulgaria is one of the world's largest producers of rose oil. This liquid gold is used to flavor chocolates, liqueurs, and jams. Oh, and rose scented perfume, but you shouldn't eat that. The primary producer is called the Valley of the Roses (located in central Bulgaria, in the town of ┬áKazanluk). Hidden … [Read more...]

Recipe: Savory Cheese Pastry (Banitsa)

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Serves 6 My husband is officially in love with Bulgaria. To be fair, he didn't stand a chance. Second only to pure sugar, Keith loves anything that includes butter, pastry, or cheese. This recipe boasts all three, and in eye-popping quantities. Not to say it was love at first sight. It wasn't. After all, my pastry skills are minimal. But, hey, we can all use a little forgiveness in the kitchen, from time to time. Especially when it comes to pastries. Thankfully, phyllo dough spreads, … [Read more...]

Menu: Bulgaria

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We've been huddled around the air conditioner for, oh, about 2 months now. That's why, this week, I'm making a completely "cool" dinner, made possible by Bulgaria. Thank goodness for chilled soup, dips, drinks, and pastries. Mmm. P.S. This meal just so happens to be vegetarian (with one vegan dish). Chilled Cucumber Soup (Tarator) [Recipe] Refreshing blend of Bulgarian yogurt and cucumber, with a hint of garlic. Garnish with dill and/or crushed walnuts. Savory Cheese Pastry (Banitsa) … [Read more...]