Food you must try while in Bulgaria
Eating is one of the most important aspects of a holiday and the food in Bulgaria is definitely something to get excited about. The cuisine across Bulgaria is diverse, thanks to the climatic conditions across the country, giving you all the more to choose from on your upcoming Bulgaria holiday.
In general, stews, soups and yogurt-based dishes are popular in Bulgaria along with traditional Ottoman cuisine such as moussakas and baklavas. Keep an eye out for restaurants filled with locals, they’re bound to be good ones!
When it comes to ordering, here are some top dishes not to miss while you’re in Bulgaria.
This traditional Bulgarian dish is made from tomatoes, cucumbers, onion, raw or roasted peppers, and sirene – a white brine cheese. The dish is named after the local frugal folk called ‘Shopi’ who live in the capital of Bulgaria. A shopska salad and a cold rakia – the popular spirit in Bulgaria – is the normal way to start a meal.
This is actually a soup made with tripe – for anyone who isn’t familiar with this kind of meat, it’s the lining of a cow’s stomach. However, don’t let this put you off: not only is it seasoned with tasty garlic, vinegar and hot red pepper, shkemne chorba is widely believe to alleviate hangovers!
Pastry lovers will enjoy this simple and warming dish. It’s just a mixture of whisked eggs, pieces of Bulgarian cheese and gets baked until the golden crust forms. Scoff it while it’s hot for the best taste.
People often think moussaka originates from Greece, but Bulgarians would tell you you’re wrong. This traditional Bulgarian version is made from potatoes, ground meat, tomatoes and white sauce.
The rest of the world may not have heard of this traditional Bulgarian dish, but it’s one of the most popular in the country. The ingredients and preparation depends on the region as almost every part of Bulgaria has its own recipe. Generally the meal will consist of marinated cooked meat and vegetables and will be served in an earthenware pot. The spiciness depends on the region, so watch out!
Now here’s one for your summer holidays – a cold soup made from yogurt, cucumbers and garlic. Tarator is so popular you can find it in pretty much every Bulgarian restaurant around.
Widely regarded as the best yogurt in the world, kiselo-mlyako can only be made in Bulgaria thanks to the Lactobacterium Bulgaricum that’s used to make the cheese. This is organic yogurt in its most purest form. Enjoy with fruits or just add to any meal you’re eating for some extra flavour.
Where to go for the best eats in Bulgaria
If you’re eating around the area of Sunny Beach you’ll find a lot of fish on the menu, and it’s the freshest you’ll find, straight out of the Black Sea. Try Djanny or Hanska Shatra restaurants in the area for lively cabaret shows and acrobatics alongside your meal.
Further south, check out The Windmill in the town of Sozopol for traditional salads and stuffed veg dishes with evening dances and songs to accompany. As you start to go away from the coast you’ll find the cuisine relies more on fruit and vegetables and hearty pots of stew, such as you’ll find in picture-box inland towns like Veiliko – Shtastlivetsa is a good establishment to visit here.
Do you have any culinary tips for Bulgaria? Share your experiences with the local cuisine below!