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or thousands of years bc the tribal communities centred round
Vuèedol used an extremely precise calendar which enabled
them to engage effectively and successfully in agriculture.
   On the island of Vis there are traces of grape vine which
have been cultivated from pre-Christian times, right up to
the present day.
                                                                to them by the gods: trout, river crabs, frogs, game and fertile
                                                                land. Instead of the usual temporary camp they created a
                                                                permanent settlement on the hills along the Cetina River.
                                                                   A thousand years ago, top quality chefs, who were
                                                                equally expert in Oriental and Western cuisines, were a
                                                                key element of the crews aboard the ships of Dubrovnik
                                                                                                                                   Each croatian
                                                                                                                                   tourist rEGion is
                                                                                                                                   a sourcE of hiGh
                                                                                                                                   quality cuisinE,
                                                                                                                                   rEGardlEss of
                                                                                                                                   whEthEr thE
                                                                                                                                   offErEd dish is
                                                                                                                                   of polEnta madE
   The oldest coin to be found on the island of Hvar bears      which sailed the Mediterranean and the oceans. From
                                                                                                                                   from whitE maizE
on the reverse side a depiction of a bunch of grapes, and       Istria to Konavle, Croats have been safeguarding dozens of         or a phEasant
on the obverse side the image of Homer – the poet who           centuries-old olive trees which still bear fruit to this day.      patE flavourEd
extolled their virtues in verse.                                Roman emperors planted olive groves in Istria because              with frEsh
   Officers of ancient Rome gladly became gourmands once        they considered the area as being the best for cultivation         istrian trufflEs.
they discovered the riches of the Cetina region bequeathed      of superior olives.

                                                                                                        croatian Gastronomy   
                                                                                                                                                                 introduction 4-9                    istria 10-1              kvarner & 16-19                  dalmatia 20-23                     dalmatia 24-2
                                                                                                                                                                                                                               highlands                      zadar region                     Šibenik region

                                                                                                                                                               dalmatia 28-31                  dalmatia 32-3                    slavonia 36-39            central croatia 40-43                     zagreb 44-3
                                                                                                                                                              split region               dubrovnik region
                        Also, recipes from the Viennese court were being prepared
                     by cooks attending to the gastronomic needs of the nobility
                     and other wealthy households in northern Croatia.
                        Napoleon’s cooks introduced many of their culinary secrets
                                         to their Croatian counterparts, and they
                                         are still with us today – the mustard and
Cultivation of certain                   bermet, i.e. vermouth, of Samobor being
      varieties of grape                 two of the most famous examples. It has
                                         to be pointed out, however, that those
  on the island of Vis                   French cooks did not find any absence
    dates back to pre-                   of culinary skills, indeed quite the con-
                                         trary; in most cases the local population
        Christian times.                 simply added a “French touch” to some of                                                                        of that seafood, such as scampi and oysters from particular                                                                             maraska, a typE
                                         their existing recipes. For instance, mus-     local brEEds of shEEp arE rEnownEd for thEir                     localities, are the best in the world. Those are subjec-                                                                                of black chErry
                                         tard is mentioned in Gazophylacium, the        mEat with an ExquisitE tastE, rEsultinG from thE                 tive assessments; objective scientific findings have quite                                                                              Grown around
                                                                                        quality of GrazinG - aromatic, and mEdical mEditEr-                                                                                                                                                      zadar, is famous
                                         famous Latin-Croatian dictionary by Ivan                                                                        definitely shown that the concentration of elements in                                                                                  for its spEcial,
                                                                                        ranEan hErbs, and thE nEar vicinity of thE sEa
                                         Belostenec, completed in 1674.                                                                                  the Marasca black/sour cherry, grown in the surroundings                                                                                quitE supErb
                                                                                        which imparts a portion of its salt to thE land.
                                            Italians have managed to convince a         this combination lEnds thE mEat of thEsE animals                 of Zadar, make it superior to any other type of black/sour                                                                              tastE.
                                         good part of the world that hundreds of        a vEry spEcial flavour.                                          cherry in the world - which is more than amply proved by
                                         their regional dishes deserve a place at                                                                        Maraschino, the famous liqueur of Zadar.
                                         the peak of world gastronomy. However,       are grown in the much larger France! Also, in small Croatia           The varieties of small Mediterranean breeds of sheep
                                         at the beginning of the last century they    more varieties of the most highly valued truffles can be           scattered across the Adriatic islands, throughout the coastal
                                         themselves claimed that the best Italian     found than in that same France, including the white Tuber          areas and coastal hinterland, are in themselves a source of
throuGhout all thE                       dishes are prepared in Dalmatia, where a     magnatum (pico), which is most sought after. For years now         ultimate culinary pleasures and an excellent paradigm of the
sEasons of thE yEar  great culinary tradition makes use of first-class ingredients.   micologists have been trying to compile a definitive list of       peaks of Croatian gastronomy: those breeds are small, some
croatian markEts        In the course of its travels from Persia, via Turkey to       edible fungi that are autochthonous in Croatia, but the            of them even the smallest in the Mediterranean, and their
abound with produ-
cE Grown undEr
                     Croatian lands, a journey which took thousands of kilome-        task is so extensive that they have yet to complete it. The        milk yield is equally small due to meagre but exquisitely aro-   that represents an outstanding Croatian attraction. It is not
sound conditions,    tres and hundreds of years to complete, the recipe for æevap     Croatian Adriatic is not renowned for its great quantities of      matic grazing. On the other hand, however, their meat, milk      enough to learn about it only in its summer version – all four
on small family      or kebab was being constantly improved until it reached          fish, crabs, shellfish and molluscs, but it is renowned for its    and the cheese produced from it are delectable indeed.           season offer equally exquisite gastronomic experiences.
holdinGs, as thEy    absolute perfection. And all that together with many other       rich variety of seafood. Indeed, it is claimed by many that some      Croatia cannot compete in quantities and yields of fruit,        It can be safely said that Croatia is, so to speak, “on the
do with fish cauGht  great dishes and culinary procedures.                                                                                               vegetables, fungi, fish, crabs, meat, cheese or honey with       boil”; agricultural experts and strategists of food production
in clEan rivErs and
 crystal clEar sEas.    Hungarians who came to settle in Podravina, Meðimurje,                                                                           the large world producers. But then, it has no need to.          are undertaking a comprehensive inventory, and preparing
                     Slavonia and Baranja are masters of dishes prepared in                                                                              The incredible variety and surprising quality of ingredients,    a national strategy for the country’s road to the European
                     small cauldrons, delicacies which represent the essence of                                                                          food-stuffs, dishes and processed products offered by these      Union. All edible treasures must be listed, described and pro-
                     the identity of Hungarian cuisine.                                                                                                  climes and tradition are in themselves a world monument          tected as much as possible so as to ensure their survival within
                        Today’s Croatia, a small Alpine, Pannonian,                                                                                      of culture with which one must become familiar, nurture,         the strictly applied European rules. This is a massive task of
                     Danube-basin and Mediterranean                                                                                                      preserve, respect and above all savour and enjoy.                invaluable significance; a high percentage of Croats fear that
                          country, grows all the same                                                                                                        Hence, the Croatian National Tourist Board will make         Brussels bureaucracy would not look kindly upon the ancient
                                types of grape that                                                                                                      it an ongoing project to systematically research and present     habits and customs practiced by thousands of small family
                                                                                                                                                         Croatian national gastronomy to the world public in the          producers, the very ones who enable Croats to enjoy hundreds
                                                                                                                                                         deeply held belief that, alongside natural attractions and       of superb dishes prepared throughout our country.
                                                                                                                                                         cultural heritage, it is the country’s national gastronomy          Preservation and advancement of that wonderful heritage
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          of our forefathers is, for Croats and the numerous national
                                                                                                                                                                                                  wild or sEmi-           minorities who have lived here for a long time, a task which
                                                                                                                                                                                                  plants from thE         carries with it the very significance of survival. From the
                                                                                                                                                                                                  shorEs of thE           holdings of our farmers, from our meadows, forests, streams,
                                                                                                                                                                                                  adriatic form           rivers and the sea, in every season of the year there arrives to
                                                                                                                                                                                                  an irrEplacEa-          the Croatian markets a myriad of produce and products: fruit,
                                                                                                                                                                                                  blE ElEmEnt of
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          vegetables, wild edible plants, herbs, fungi, fresh and saltwater
                                                                                                                                                                                                  cuisinE.                fish, shellfish, crabs, molluscs, snails, frogs, game, fresh meat,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          sausages, salamis, hams and proscuittos, breads, rolls and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          cakes; and they never fail to surprise gourmands and con-
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          noisseurs from all over the world. Not by quantity – Croatia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   croatian Gastronomy    
                                                                                         those who have enjoyed feasts all over the world.
                                                                                            Croatia neither can nor should compete with the large
                                                                                         food producers. Here, the holdings are fragmented; fields,
                                                                                         barns and fishing boats are small. This situation, which for
                                                                                         decades has been a serious national problem, is now proving
                                                                                         to be a first class potential. In Croatia, chickens do indeed
                                                                                         peck in courtyards, eating what nature provides; here, sheep
                                                                                         do graze aromatic herbs; tuna fish feed on live pilchards in
                                                                                         clear seas, and in forests wild strawberries happily grow in the
                                                                                         company of mushrooms – until bears discover them and have
                                                                                         themselves a feast...
                                                                                            Viewed against water resources throughout the world,
                                                                                         Croatian waters, fresh and salt, standing and running, sur-
                                                                                         face or underground, are all well preserved. The soil is not
                                                                                         contaminated with heavy metals, nor is it exhausted by
                                                                                         over-intensive agriculture. The air is considerably cleaner
                                                                                         than in the majority of other European countries, and people
                                                                                         are being brought up, and are therefore accustomed to, a
                                                                                         traditional cuisine of first-rate nutritious properties, not only
                                                                                         in the Mediterranean part of the country but in its vales in
                                                                                         the north and in the mountain area extending between the
                                                                                         coastal region and the Pannonian plain.
                                                                                            To savour a pogaèa (round, unleavened bread) made from
                                                                                         ancient varieties of grain from Meðimurje, salted by salt har-
                                                                                         vested on the Dalmatian islands is in itself a gastronomic expe-
                                                                                         rience fit to start a culinary feast in Croatia. An experienced
roman EmpErors     is, as we have said, a small country – but with their incredible      connoisseur can follow the intricate paths of Croatian cuisine,
wErE of thE        variety. Amidst this wealth of choice one can select foodstuffs       and they will lead him from the rural origins, via folk tradition,
opinion that thE   and dishes that stand shoulder to shoulder with the finest            to the intelligent concepts of brilliant young cooks in their fine
finEst olivEs
                   in the world, forming the basis of our national gastronomy            restaurants. What a challenge for a palate worthy of its name!
wErE Grown in
istria.            which the world has yet to discover in its full glory, aroma and         With this publication we aim to outline the gastronomic
                   flavour. Bearing in mind its real potentials, very little is indeed   routes through Croatia which are of particular interest, or
                   known in the world about Croatia's gastronomy. This is why            rather those which lead to singular culinary pleasures.
                   we are working on a strategy.                                            The tourist map of Croatia divides the country into tourist
                       Croatia will not amaze anybody with the quantities of food        regions. Each is a source of high quality cuisine, regardless of
                   produced here. In the Croatian waters of the Adriatic there           whether the offered dish is a polenta made from white maize,
                   are relatively small numbers of fish and other sea creatures.         which takes hours of gentle cooking and stirring in a cauldron
                   But it is the story of the Adriatic which is typical of Croatia’s     over an open fire in the old- fashioned hearth of a household
                   gastronomy: neither the sea nor the seabed is overcrowded             that earns its living through agro-tourism, or a pheasant paté
                   by massive numbers, but the variety of species living here is         flavoured with fresh Istrian truffles made for the exclusive
                   quite something. From a culinary standpoint this                      festival of high gastronomy called The Golden Truffle. First rate
                   wealth gains another, yet more distinct                                              foodstuffs and ways of preparing them can be
                   quality: the frutti di mare of the                                                        found throughout the land, and the charm
                   Adriatic are deemed to be among                                                                   of getting to know them, from one
                   the most delectable in the world.                                                                   cluster to another, lies in the rich
                   Pilchard, sand smelt, anchovy, tuna,                                                                  and colourful varieties varieties
                   dentex, gilthead, John Dory, red                                                                       found regionally and locally.
                   mullet, scampi, sea spider, lob-
                   ster, oyster, scallops, calamari,
                   squid... In the right hands all
                                                                                                                                   oystErs, thE
                   of them can be transformed                                                                                      princEly dElicacy
                   into a feast fondly remem-                                                                                      of coastal
                   bered with pleasure even by                                                                                     croatia.

                   8   croatian Gastronomy

stria   The gasTronomy   o f i s T r i a p r e s e n T s i T s e l f as one of complete harmony,
                                  characterized first and foremost by traditional folk and urban cuisine offered
                                        in numerous pubs, inns and cellars. as a gastronomic entity istria
                                 is a phenomenon of world ranking. its folk cuisine is a centuries-old response,
                                        on the one hand to economic deprivation, and on the other to the
                                   abundant generosity of nature and the great culinary models of the nearby

                                                                      italian provinces.

                                           stria is the first Croatian region which has long been visited by special
                                           type of guest: those who regard gastronomy either as the most important,
                                           or as one of the very important, reasons for travelling. The consequence
                                           of a process in which guests visiting the Istrian coast began to "discover"
                                           its interior, completely removed from large tourist complexes and similar
                                           urban interventions. Istria’s interior was, in that respect, a virgin land and
                                           is, in fact, described in monographs written today as Terra incognita, as
                                           the ancient cartographers used to describe an unknown, unexplored land.
                                           The coast and the interior of Istria were, indeed are, complementary not
                                           only in the magnificent landscapes and a dramatic change of atmosphere,
                                           but they also formed and form a unique gastronomic entity combining
                                           the sea food provided by the Mediterranean with its hinterland. Frutti
                                                                     di mare of exquisite quality were rounded off by
                                                                     produce from gardens, orchards, vineyards and
                                                                     forests in the peninsula’s interior. As a whole, the
                                                                     gastronomy of Istria presents itself as one of com-
                                                                     plete harmony, characterized first and foremost
                                                                     by traditional folk and urban cuisine offered in
                                                                     numerous pubs, inns and cellars.
                                                                        Istria was also the area in which the first truly
                                                                     luxurious restaurants in Croatia opened their
                                                                     doors. Tourist guides published by the Tourist
                                                                     Board of the County of Istria were the first to
                                                                     start a systematic and reliable exploration and
                                                                     follow-up, as well as offering encouragement for
                          TourisT Board of The CounTy                the development of quality catering establish-
                                                  of isTria          ments. Concurrently, the well organized Istrian
                                 Pionirska 1, 52440 Poreč            wine growers began to set up clear criteria for
                                   Tel.: +385 52 452 797             wine roads, and soon the whole of Istria was criss-
                                   Fax: +385 52 452 796              crossed with such roads.
                                        E-mail:           As a gastronomic entity Istria is a phenomenon
                                               of world ranking. Its folk cuisine is a centuries-old
                                                                     response, on the one hand to economic depriva-
                                                                     tion, and on the other to the abundant generosity
                                                                     of nature and the great culinary models of the
                                                                     nearby Italian provinces. Simple popular dishes
                                                                     again seem very modern: omelettes (locally known

                                                                                                   croaTian GasTronomy   11
01           istria
                                                                                                                                                   wild asparaGus Grown all ovEr ThE                     pasTa sprinklEd wiTh GraTEd TruFFlEs,              risoTTos oF EvEry imaGinablE kind - From
                                                                                                                                                   norThEn parT oF isTria in ThE sprin-                  whiTE or black, Form a parT oF ThE                 ThE rEd onE madE wiTh radiccio, To ThE
                                                                                                                                                   GTimE.                                                mEnu oF almosT EvEry rEsTauranT.                   black onE wiTh squid ink - arE anoThEr
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            isTrian spEcialTy noT To bE missEd.

                                                                                                                                                 Agrotourism is the key gastronomic feature of the interior of this
                                                                                                                                                      peninsula. It is based on rural holdings offering quality, home-
                                                                                                                                                  cooked food served in a homely and intimate atmosphere.
                                                                                                                                                                                           ombolo- a bonEd        pico, a kilo of which can fetch more than 3000 euro, come      ThE woods around
                                                                                                                                                                                           pork loin FirsT        to the market in the autumn. The truffle season lasts up to    ThE anciEnT and
                                                                                                                                                                                           briEFly smokEd                                                                        EnchanTinG, Tiny
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  the end of the year.
                                                                                                                                                                                           and ThEn GrillEd                                                                      Towns oF moTovun
                                                                                                                                                                                                                     The main site of this undoubtedly most expensive food-      and Grožnjan, are
                                                                                                                                                                                           ovEr hoT coals.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  stuff is the famous Motovun forest, located alongside the      rEplETE wiTh all
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Mirna River, at the foot of the mount upon which rises         kinds oF mush-
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  the magnificent little town of Motovun. World experts          rooms which lEnd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 ThEmsElvEs rEadily
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  have still not decided how                                     To a variETy oF
              as fritaja), practically a trade mark of Istrian cuisine, are a       owinG To ThEir naTural bEauTy and archaEoloGi-                                                                                the famous truffle from                                        dElicious dishEs.
              clear demonstration of this. Based first and foremost on              cal localities, the Brijuni archiPelaGo, just off                                                                             Alba came to have a
              good free-range eggs, cooked to perfection, or if you will a          the town of Pula, enjoys the status of a nation-                The mainstay of Istrian catering, and the guarantee of a      twin of equal quality in
                                                                                    al park.
              point, to use the gastronomic patois. Added to the omelettes                                                                       good atmosphere, is the range of simple house wines - and        Motovun and several
              is one, or at most two ingredients, whose taste is a domi-          briefly smoke dried boned pork loin, and game both large       wine has for centuries been the medium of socializing. In        other smaller habitats
                                  nant one in the dish, and the selection of      and small.                                                     Istrian pubs people still enjoy the Istrian supa, served in a    through Istria. But
                                  which is dictated by the season, as is the         The interest that everyday Istrian cuisine began to         bukaleta (a ceramic jug): gently warmed red wine, most
  Oysters from the                case in particular with wild asparagus. In a    generate in recent decades, not only among guests from         often teran or borgogna, is poured into a bukaleta, a slice
  Lim channel are                 nutshell, Istrian fritaja with wild asparagus   other parts of Croatia but also among those beyond our         of freshly toasted bread is added, together with few drops
                                  is a popular dish which meets all the crite-    borders, gave rise to the development of agrotourism, a        of olive oil, a spoon of sugar and a pinch of freshly ground
      a renowned                  ria of modern-day high cuisine.                 catering industry in rural homesteads based on produce         pepper. The jug is passed around the table with wine being
   specialty of the                   Maneštra, or as some would say min-         from the homestead itself. Today, agrotourism is the           drunk, actually sipped, through the bread, which makes it
                                  estrone, is also a part of Istrian culinary     key gastronomic feature of the interior of Istria with a       extremely drinkable.
 Northern Adriatic.               tradition. Boiled potatoes and beans,           range of dishes no longer restricted to a dozen or so of          Istrian supa is a custom typical of small village and town
                                  with the addition of seasonal vegeta-           the most typical. Alongside the standard range on offer        oštarije, or if you will, pubs. Atmosphere in those establish-
                                  bles which give this particular dish its        many households are now expanding their production             ments is created first and foremost by an open fireplace
                                  name: maneštra with sweet corn, bar-            of high quality home grown foods, and we now have, for         which, although frequently set into a corner, is the social
                                  ley, chick-peas, fennel; when combined          instance, small family game breeding farms. Most usual         hub of the place; food is cooked on it, meat sizzles on its
                                  with sauerkraut and turnip it is called         is the feathered variety, but in Istria it is not surprising   metal grids; people really love to gather around, particularly
                                  yota. Specific characteristics of Istrian       to find a wild boar being kept in a pen, as is the case in     in winter time.
                                  maneštra is pešt – finely chopped bacon,        Pladnjaki. In such cases village tourism can offer such           Ombolo is the king of a menu prepared in such fireplaces.
                                  parsley and garlic. Thus prepared, paste        delicacies as ombolo, prosciutto and sausages produced         Slightly smoked pork loin is sliced and slightly grilled over
                                  is added at the commencement of cook-           from such game.                                                the charcoal. It is often served with sauerkraut, and in
                                  ing in order to ensure that the bacon is                                                                       combination with Istrian sausage.
                                  thoroughly cooked.                                                                      chEEsE madE
                                      Folk, urban and fine cuisines catering                                              From GoaT milk         TruFFlEs
                                  in Istria overlap and intertwine, which                                                 is EspEcially          It is quite usual that mystery stories are spun about truf-
                                                                                                                          dElicious whEn
              is no wonder since they are all based on gastronomic                                                        FlavourEd wiTh
                                                                                                                                                 fles before they are accepted as a part of local cuisine.
              icons such as indigenous forms of pasta made from top                                                       TruFFlE.               Istria was no different. It was only at the beginning of
              quality flour; then there are oysters, sea spiders, the                                                                            the last century that Istrians realized what a gastronomic
              best of deep sea fish, white and black truffles and other                                                                          jewel they had at their disposal. Several excellent types
              mushrooms, wild asparagus, Istrian prosciutto, pancetta,                                                                           of truffles grow in Istria almost the year round, while the
              a specially cured bacon, sausages and ombolo, spiced and                                                                           most treasured one, the white truffle or Tuber magnatum

                    12   croaTian GasTronomy                                                                                                                                                                                                          croaTian GasTronomy   13
01            istria
                                                                                                                                         isTria is onE oF ThE bEsT placEs For                           a widE ranGE oF TruFFlE variETiEs                    fritaja, i.e., an omElETTE wiTh aspara-
               the international gatherings of experts and thematic gas-                                                                 olivE GrowinG and For ThE produc-                              Grows in isTria all yEar round.                      Gus, is a delicacy enjoyed in istrian
               tronomic presentations entitled Golden truffle held in the                                                                Tion oF Top qualiTy olivE oil.                                                                                      homEs
               Marino restaurant in Kremelje, near Momjan, arrived at
               a clear conclusion: the white truffle of Istria is in no way
               inferior to those from Alba! Indeed, an American jour-
               nalist discovered that many “truffles from Alba” actually
                                  originate in Istria.
                                     At the special presentation of haute
  Until very recently             cuisine held in the Valsabbion restau-
the white truffle of              rant not far from Pula, Bruno Clement,
                                  the renowned French culinary wizard,
Istria was unknown                also known as the King of Truffles,
by the elite gastro-              publicly confirmed that conclusion in                                                               i sT r i a n pa sTa a n d                                                   are a number of small producers who have earned a fine
                                  the autumn of 2003. The largest white                                                               iTs picTurEsquE                                                             reputation among connoisseurs of good pasta.
nomy of the world.                truffle ever found, weighing almost a                                                               GarnishinGs
                                  kilogram-and-a-half, was found in the                                                               In the course of its journey from Italy towards Istria both                 maneštra od BoBići
                                  Motovun forest.                               EvEn ThE roman EmpErors who build ThE amphi-          names and forms of pasta changed, eventually being trans-                   (minEsTronE wiTh swEET corn)
                                     Until recently the Istrian white truf-     ThEaTrE in pula considErEd ThaT ThE arEa oF           formed into authentic features of Istrian cuisine. Lovers of                The best known of the thick stews in Istria is the famous
                                  fle was unknown on the world stage of         isTria was bEsT For ThE culTivaTion oF supErior       Italian pasta could probably become confused by the Istrian                 maneštra od bobiæi, yet another example of how a great
                                  luxury gastronomy. It was reaching fine                                                                                                                                         dish can be born out of privation. After all, its main
                                                                                                                                                                                   supa, or isTrian
                                  restaurants of the world through smug-      majestic gastronomic presence. Right at table, right                                                 soup, sErvEd in a              ingredient is a prosciutto bone, and tradition has it that
                                  gling, and was served either without its    before the guest, a small amount of truffle is grated                                                bukalETa: rEd winE             it was used more than once, even borrowed from house
                                  origin being given, or was being falsely    over freshly cooked pasta, Istrian fui (somewhat                                                    wiTh a slicE oF                to house. Young sweet corn, potatoes, red beans, garlic,
                                  presented as Italian. Today, Istrians no    similar in shape to Italian garganeli) or                                                            ToasTEd brEad, a               celery leaf, pepper and panceta (specially cured meaty          buzET, a small,
                                                                                                                                                                                   pinch oF salT and                                                                              old Town siTuaTEd
                                  longer wish to smuggle, or even export      gnocchi, and there you have it!                                                                                                     bacon) or at least its rind – these are the ingredients that
                                                                                                                                                                                   pEppEr, and a FEw                                                                              inland, cElEbraTEs
                                  their truffles. But neither do they want    Omelette, or fritaja with                                                                            drops oF olivE                 go to make this stew, in addition to the prosciutto bone,       ThE bEGinninG
                                  to save them for themselves. It’s not       truffles is served in a                                                                              oil, is drunk From             of course. Maneštra of bobiæi, cooked slowly over a gentle      oF ThE TruFFlE
               that they don’t like them, they want even more to be           similar way.                                                                                         ceramic juGs.                  heat, is now once again as popular as it was so long ago        sEason wiTh a
               able to offer them to those true connoisseurs of this                                                                                                                                              when some anonymous genius created it.                          GiGanTic omElETTE.
               magical fungus who come to visit the small corner of the
               world from which this delicacy originates.                                                                             lasagna. They are not in fact rectangular sheets of pasta laid
                  Traditional Istrian dishes prepared with                                                                            one on top of another with sauce in between, but simply wide
               truffles are very simple, particularly                                                                                 strip noodles, a shape which makes them suitable for different
               when the best, the white truf-                                                                                         dishes, including making tasty nests for white truffles.
               fle is being used. Nothing                                                                                                 The best known Istrian pasta is fui, small squares of pasta
               should be allowed                                                                                                      diagonally rolled into tubes. Flour, salt and water are mixed
               to impair its                                                                                                          into smooth dough which is rolled into a thin sheet, cut into
                                                                                                                                      4x4cm squares, the opposite corners of which are folded
                                                                                                                                      towards the middle and pressed so as to stick together.
                                                                                                                                          Suitable for a variety of dishes, fui are most often found
                                                                                                                                      as a welcoming starter to gvacet – delectable Istrian goulash,
                                                                                                                                      i.e. pieces of meat in a thick gravy - chicken version is very
                                                                                                                                      popular and widespread, as well as all kinds of larger game.
                                                                                                                                          The favourite pasta in Sveti Vinæent and its surroundings are
                                                                                                                                      pljukanci, small, spindle-shaped pieces of dough, most appreciat-
                                                                                                                                      ed when served with pieces of prosciutto and wild asparagus, or
                                                                                                                                      with gravy made with sausage or of mushroom, locally known as
                                                                                                                                      martinèica or, if you will, Clitocybe geotropa. But it is also quite suf-
                                                                                                                                      ficient to sprinkle this excellent pasta with good grated cheese
                                                                                                                                      – particularly if it comes from the nearby village of Šikuti. There,
                                                                                                                                      one can chance on a very strong cheese, made of a mixture of
                                                                                                                                      sheep and goat milk, but which is not easy to find.
                                                                                                                                          Home-made pasta is highly appreciated in Istria, but there

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       croaTian GasTronomy   15

     & highlands   To The Curious   G a s T r o n o m e k v a r n e r is a site of most varied opportunities. From the
                                              mountain of Učka in the direction of Dalmatia, it is a continuation of Istria. The
                                               largest Croatian islands (Cres and Krk) form a part of this cluster, as do the
                                             mountain massifs in the regions of Gorski kotar and Lika. First class fish, crabs
                                               and other frutti di mare are readily available in the markets, side by side with
                                            “frutti di forest”: mushrooms, wild fruit, game, and to round if all off here one can
                                            savour some of the best cheeses in this country, made from cow, sheep and goat
                                                milk from the livestock grazing on mountain, coastal and island meadows.

                                               a            nd these are only some of the attractions, to which we must add snails, frogs,
                                                            honey, and for many the highest ace of Croatian gastronomy, lamb in all its
                                                            delectable variations, from Pag, Cres, Krk, Rab, and on to Lika and other
                                                            areas... This is also the area where the best scampi in the Adriatic are caught
                                                            and prepared. Among the many compliments given to them is that which
                                                            claims no other scampi in the world can compare to them!
                                                               It is therefore logical that with such ingredients it was here in the
                                                            Kvarner cluster that modern Croatian cuisine was being created in the
                                                            second half of the 20th century. Today, some of the leading restaurants
                                                            in our country, given a prominent place in the leading world guides, can
                                                            be found here.

                                                                                       Growing in the foothills of Uèka, is the famous
                                                                                       chestnut tree known as Lovranski marun, that is,
                                                                                       the marron of Lovran, whose fruit is most com-
                                                                                       monly eaten roasted. Come their season sometime
                                                                                       in October Lovran holds its traditional festivity,
                                                                                       Marunada, when gastronomy is devoted to the sweet
                                                                                       chestnut. In the streets they are eaten roasted, but in
                                                                                       restaurants a range of dishes both sweet and savoury
                                                                                       are prepared, including chestnut soup.

                                      TourisT Board of The CounTy                      FroGs
                                        of Primorje - Gorski koTar                     Although frogs of excellent quality are found in
                                       n. tesle 2, p.p. 52, 51410 opatija              several locations throughout Croatia, the inhab-
                                                 tel.: +385 51 272 988                 itants of Lokve in Gorski kotar are renowned
                                                 Fax: +385 51 272 909                  for their particular fondness for frogs. These are
                                              e-mail:               best towards the end of April, during the abar-
                                                               ska noæ (Night of Frogs) when the finest frog is
                                               For a detailed list of county tourist   “elected” and when some very specific dishes
                                                 Boards, please refer to page 54.      can be savoured, particularly “frogs a la Lokve”:
                                                                                       frog legs stewed with snails and local wild mush-
                                                                                       rooms, served with boiled potatoes or polenta.

                                                                                       Few people outside the Kvarner area know that

                                                                                                                     croatian Gastronomy   17
02              kvarner                                                                          & HigHlands

                                                                                                                                                              a DeLICaCy MaDe oF ThIn pasTry anD                       Basa, Fresh cheese - maDe From cow                   mushrooms From Gorski kotar anD
   LamBs reareD                                                                                                                                                                                                        or sheep MILK - Is a speCIaLTy oF LIKa.              LIKa are a soUrCe oF GreaT pLeasUre
  on the isLanDs                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            For ConnoIsseUrs anD experTs aLIKe.
oF the northern
    aDriatic, anD
From the hinter-
 LanD oF veLebIT,
are spIT-roasTeD
                                                                                                                                                           First class fish, crabs and other frutti di mare are
 in many restau-
    rants FounD
   aLonGsiDe the
                                                                                                                                                                 readily available in the markets, side by side with
                                                                                                                                                             “frutti di forest”: mushrooms, wild fruit, game...
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                pauper’s meal but is today being sought after by knowledge-
                                                                                                                                                                                                       the maroni, or
                                                                                                                                                                                                       rather, sweet            able connoisseurs. Potato and soaked beans are cooked until
                                                                                                                                                                                                       chestnuts,               the soup reaches the desired thickness; carrots, parsley and
                                                                                                                                                                                                       are Best eaten           garlic are added, followed by finely chopped panceta (meaty
                                                                                                                                                                                                       roasteD.                 bacon) and finally, young shoots of koromaè, (fennel) to
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                imbue the dish with its wonderful, aromatic fragrance.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                LIčKI LonaC
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                In the tradition of the variety of stews prepared in a single
                 the dormouse is the gastro-specialty of this region. Today,          village to village, the method employed in the surroundings of       GrobnIčKI sIr                                                        pot, common to Central and Eastern Europe, Lièki lonac, or
                 the uninitiated tend to look at them askance, but recipes            Otoèac is particularly appetising: fresh milk is strained through    Grobnièki sir, or cheese from the Grobnik range, is produced         hotpot, the casserole of Lika, stands apart. Its modern varia-
                                  for their preparation can be found as               gauze, boiled, and allowed to cool. Sour milk is then added.         from milk of sheep which graze on the mountain meadows               tions differ somewhat from the traditional ones. Ingredients
                                  long ago as Apicius’ collection of recipes.         The mixture is first kept in a warm place until it curdles, and      of Gorski kotar, in the villages above the Grobnik range.            include lamb or mutton, with smoked/dried mutton as an
   Frutti di mare and             Nowadays, their flesh is mostly fried or            then in a cold place until it solidifies. The final touch is the     This large cylinder cheese does not come in any uniform              option; the key vegetables are onions, cabbage, potatoes,
 fish are a dominant              spit-roasted. The most delectable of all            addition of cream. Basa is usually served with pura or polenta,      shape since it is shaped by hand, without pressing. It can           carrots, parsley and garlic and, when in season, green pep-
                                  is a young dormouse cooked over char-               and the best polenta is one which cooks slowly over a gentle         weigh up to 20 kg. This is a distinctly salty cheese, which is       per, tomatoes, runner beans, young beans. Appropriate
feature in restauran-             coal, sometimes coated with corn flour.             heat for at least two hours, and with constant stirring.             why in Rijeka they call it just that: salty cheese.                  spices are laurel leaf and pepper. The Lika hotpot is best
 ts along the shores,             Older ones are prepared in goulash and
                                  served with polenta. Dormouse is served             LIčKI šKrIpavaC                                                      cheeses oF the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                when cooked in an earthenware pot, in the oven, over very
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                gentle heat, for hours, even overnight.
    while spit-roasted            in Kastav, Liganj, Lovranska Draga...               If the cheese you are eating squeaks between your teeth, then        Kvarner IsLanDs
      lamb holds first            On Whit Sunday (one week after St.                  you are eating Lièki škripavac. This cheese is made of well salted   Grazing on the north Adriatic islands is very distinct, and          šUrLICe                                                          BroDetto
                                  Michael’s Day, September 29th) when                 cow or sheep milk, depending on the livestock in individual          it yields a readily identifiable aromatic sheep milk. On the         The inhabitants of the island of Krk take great pride in         prepareD
    place in Lika and             the hunting season opens the dormouse               villages. The crucial ingredient is a clotting agent obtained from   island of Krk, people produce a small cheese weighing less           their indigenous type of pasta, šurlice. It is not unlike the    with anGLer,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Is a speCIaLTy
                                  becomes a gastronomic delicacy of the               the stomach of a calf or lamb. Curdled milk is strained and hand     than half a kilo, locally known as formajela. Around Vrbnik          Istrian fui, but more elongated and thinner, and is most
         Gorski kotar.            first order.                                        kneaded into its desired shape. The cheese is often smoked.          it is usually spherical, while above Baška it is square. If not      often served with thick meat gravies or frutti di mare sauces.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 maDe From
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Fish, onions,
                                                                                                                                                           sold in its fresh form it is kept in olive oil for up to a year.     When a dish is prepared with lamb, as in Baška or, for           tomatoes,
                                        UDIč                                            IT Is In ThIs area ThaT The besT sCaMpI oF The
                                                                                        aDrIaTIC are CaUGhT anD prepareD.
                                                                                                                                                               On the islands of Cres and Lošinj, cheese is larger and usu-     special occasions, with game, a palatable everyday meal          carrots anD
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 wine, anD is a
                                        Salted leg of an older lamb or a sheep is                                                                          ally with a higher fat content. Sometimes it is coated with the      becomes a memorable gastronomic experience. The cus-             very popULar
                                        hung to dry in the bora (north wind), and                                                                          residue of olives which remains after the oil has been pressed out   tom of preparing šurlice in catering establishments has also     DIsh Up anD
                                            sometimes allowed to smoke for a brief                                                                         of them, and sometimes, although more rarely, it is smoked.          been preserved in Dobrinj, a charming small town in the          Down the coast.
                                             period. On Cres, leg of lamb thus pre-                                                                            On the island of Rab cheeses are made still larger.              interior of the
                                             pared is called udiè and is one of the                                                                        These cheeses can weigh over two kg, and are consider-               island of Krk.
                                             lesser known pearls of Croatian rural                                                                         ably harder than the cheese produced on the more north-
                                           gastronomy. The same method is also                                                                             erly islands of Kvarner.
                                        practised around Dubrovnik, particularly
                                        in Konavle.                                                                                                        MInešTra oF KoroMača
                                                                                                                                                           Thick vegetable soups were, to a great degree, born out of
                      Basa                                                                                                                                 poverty, but that is precisely the reason why they are such
                      Basa is a traditional method of producing fresh, soft cheese                                                                         excellent examples of folk culinary genius, particularly in the
                      from sheep, cow or mixed milk, a method still used in Lika.                                                                          areas along the coast and on the islands. The old recipe used
                      Among the many variations of this method, which differ from                                                                          on Lošinj is one such example of a dish which once was a

                      18   croatian Gastronomy                                                                                                                                                                                                                        croatian Gastronomy   19

                    norThern dalmaTia   l i e s i n T h e C e n T r e of the croatian part of the adriatic. islands, coastal
                                                  areas and the hinterland provide everything that goes to make mediterranean
                                                   cuisine one of the most popular in the world. it is just as highly regarded by
                                                       doctors who research healthy diets, and among the most reputable
                                                           gastro-critics in search of strong, perfectly balanced flavours.

     zadar region

                                                           he two opposites of the Mediterranean clime are found in the Zadar region:
                                                           bare rocky countryside where only the most sturdy of medicinal plants of
                                                           the Kornati islands will grow and on which only the hardiest livestock,
                                                           sheep, goats, donkeys, game and even bees can live, and the rich, fertile
                                                           land of Ravni kotari, from where the most sought after fruit and vegetables
                                                           arrive to the markets of Croatia.
                                                              And it is in this unique area that the best black cherry, the famous
                                                           maraska, grows. A natural environment of such generosity was bound to
                                                           inspire gastronomic geniuses to create top quality recipes, ranked among
                                                           which is undoubtedly the world renowned Maraschino liqueur. It has many
                                                           surrogates, but only in Zadar is the liqueur produced from the indigenous
                                                           Maraska black/sour cherry, in strict observance of an original process
                                                                                    devised three centuries ago.

                                                                                   The largest fishing village on the Croatian
                                                                                   Adriatic is Kali, on the island of Ugljan. Kali
                                                                                   fishermen catch all types of fish but the basis
                                                                                   of both their trade and of fishing in general on
                                                                                   the Croatian Adriatic is the sardine. It ranks
                                                                                   among the most inexpensive of fish, but often
                                                                                   also among the most highly rated. For most
                                                                                   fishermen, and other connoisseurs, there is no
                                                                                   better fish dish than the modest sardine, but only
                                                                                   if the sardine meets a crucial criterion: that it is
                                                  TourisT Board of The             prepared and eaten for elevenses in the morn-
                                                         CounTy of Zadar           ing after the night it is caught. Due to its cyclic
                                                 Sv. Leopolda B. Mandića 1         movement, the sardine is most difficult to catch
                                                               23000 Zadar;        during summer months, but according to experts
                                                     Tel.: +385 23 315 107         it is in that very same period that this little fish is
                                                     Fax: +385 23 315 316          at its most delicious.
                                               e-mail:           In addition to being grilled fresh there are
                                                             two other ways most frequently used to prepare
                                                                                   sardines: salt-pickled or marinated. Of late,
                                                                                   however, young Croatian chefs have demon-
                                                                                   strated that sardines can be a part of a meal
                                                                                   served to the most fastidious customers. Usually,

                                                                                                                 croatian GaStronomy   21
03               dalmatia                                                                           Zadar region

                                                                                                                                                                      the adriatic Sea aBoundS in many                      SouP PrePared with LentiLS, chick-PeaS                 fiSh roaSted over hot coaLS iS a
     SwiSS chard,       the spine is removed from                                                                                                                     tyPeS of SheLLfiSh: muSSeLS, ark                      and freSh veGetaBLeS iS a nouriShinG and               GaStronomic deLicacy Par exceLLence.
    toGether with       a fresh sardine, which is                                                                                                                     SheLL, oySterS...                                     taSty introduction to any midday meaL
 mišanca - a mixtu-     then dipped into a variety
re of wiLd-Grown

                                                                                                                                                                    For most fishermen and the true
 Green PLantS - iS      of breaded mixtures with
the BeSt Side diSh      aromatic herbs, briefly
         for fiSh.      fried and served with
                        freshly-made light veg-
                        etable sauces.                                                                                                                                      connoisseur, there is no better fish than
                        the cheeSe                                                                                                                                    the popular pilchard.
                        of PaG
                  The most highly acclaimed
                  cheese in Croatia is Paški sir,                                                                                                                   result, i.e. its flavour.                                                                                                            Ljutika, a Partic-
                  the cheese from the island of                                                                                                                        In order to improve the flavour still further, many cooks                                                                         uLar tyPe of
                                                                                                                                                                    like to add an occasional crab, or at least some shellfish.                                                                          onion, miLd and
                  Pag. Sheep bred on this island
                                                                                                                                                                    In the past the island of Zlarin was famous for its lobster                                                                          rich in fLavour,
                  are among the smallest in the                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          iS often PickLed
                  whole of the Mediterranean and there-                                                                                                             brudet; in Skradin it is made from eels. Undoubtedly,                                                                                in red wine
                  fore their milk yield is low, but it is the result of                                                                                             though, the most curious is the brudet known as falši, which                                                                         vineGar.
                  the meagre grazing abounding with medicinal                                                                                                       contains no fish, no crabs and no shellfish – only vegetables
                  herbs. The fierce bora swoops down from Velebit,                                                                                                  and spices, and a stone taken from the sea!
                  whipping up the salty waters of the sea and blowing
                  them across these meadows, which at times become                             cial reveal their hidden, unexpected                                 Ljutika
                  white with salt, as if snow covered. Consequently, the                       qualities when combined with others                                  Among connoisseurs, ljutika, a particular type of onion, is
                  milk that these sheep give is naturally salty and needs no                   in a finely balanced blend.                                          highly prized for its rich, full flavoured taste, while at the
                  additional salt. Cheese produced on this island, particularly                   The criterion of a fisherman’s brudet is the most practi-         same time being less heavy on one’s stomach than other
                                    in the cheese dairy in Kolan, has in recent                cal one: it is made from the fish caught on the day, or              types of onion. In some areas of the Zadar, Šibenik and
                                    years won the highest awards at presti-                                                                                         Split clusters, as well as in some other parts of the coastal    they last longer, but peeled when they need to be pickled
     Marachino liqueur              gious exhibitions in the Mediterranean.
                                                                                               night. It is difficult, indeed practically impossible, to list all
                                                                                                                                                                    region, ljutika is pickled in wine vinegar, the onion being      faster. In these parts of Croatia ljutika is of exceptional qual-
                                                                                               the variations of this dish. The basis of the recipe is onion
  is prepared from the              It is in such demand that it is sold after a               fried in olive oil, to which small fish are added whole, while       unpeeled because it retains its true flavour much better and     ity and really comes into its own in a brudet.
                                    maturing period of only a few months. On
finest variety of black             rare occasions is it allowed to mature for
                                                                                               larger ones are cut into pieces, followed by vegetables,
                                                                                               spices, herbs, wine, prosecco, wine vinegar, and even sea
   cherry - the famous              a year or more and it is undoubtedly one                   water. The key condition for a good brudet is that is made
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         SrdeLa, or
                                    of the finest sheep cheeses in the world.
     Maraska of Zadar.              The quality of sheep milk from Pag is such
                                                                                               of several types of fish. The sequence in which individual
                                                                                               types of fish are added is also important; indeed, bearing in
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         the cheaP-
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         eSt of fiSh, iS
                                    that its curd is also regarded as a first                  mind the texture of their meat it can be crucial to the final                                                                                                                                             frequentLy
                                    class specialty. The whey remaining after                                                                                                                                                                                                                            moSt aPPreci-
                                    curdled fresh cheese has been removed is                     Brudet, Brujet, Brodet or aS Some wouLd Say,                                                                                                                                                            ated - and when
                                                                                                 Brodetto, iS the moSt PoPuLar fiSh diSh on the                                                                                                                                                          PrePared By
                                    heated and gently cooked, bringing to the                    croatian adriatic, and iS ParticuLarLy aPPreciated                                                                                                                                                      exPertS it iS
                                    surface a product resembling fresh clotted                   in daLmatia. the numBer of itS variationS are many.                                                                                                                                                     a toP ranGe
                                    cheese, locally known as puina. It is                                                                                                                                                                                                                                deLicacy.
                                    excellent when served with home-cooked
                                    polenta or pasta, and makes a delicious
                                    dessert when mixed with Pag honey, and
                                    when used as filling for pancakes.

                                           Brudet, brujet, brodet or, if you will, brodetto,
                                           is the most common dish on the Croatian
                                   Adriatic, but it is especially loved throughout
                                Dalmatia. In the Zadar, Šibenik and Split clusters
                        culinary skills are measured against one’s ability to excel in
                        the preparation of brudet. The magic of a good brudet is that
                        it makes the types of fish normally regarded as nothing spe-

                        22   croatian GaStronomy                                                                                                                                                                                                                             croatian GaStronomy   23

     šibenik region   The landscape   o f T h e Š i b e n i k r e g i o n is described as a unique monument of nature within
                                                    which man has created superb monuments of culture that are ranked among
                                                   the top of the list of world heritage: like šibenik cathedral, a work by the master
                                                                     builder Juraj Dalmatinac (Georgius Dalmaticus).

                                                    e         xtending from the canyon, waterfalls and the mouth of the River Krka
                                                              to the Kornati archipelago are areas which constitute the most beautiful
                                                              and most lovingly preserved national parks of Croatia. If one were to be
                                                              pressed to sum up the description and experience of the magic of the
                                                              Croatian landscape in one single place, then Skradin is a good choice.
                                                              Skradin is a town nestling beneath the Krka waterfalls, where the river
                                                              meets the sea. Mystics come here to meditate on the power of nature,
                                                              while some of the world’s wealthiest people come here seeking hidden
                                                              berths for their yachts, as Bill Gates has been doing for years.
                                                                 The art of the gastronomy of these parts is just as obsessive and links
                                                              some of the oldest traditions not only of this area but of food prepara-
                                                              tion in general, with dishes that are found on the most popular menus
                                                                                       of luxury restaurants in the world. Here, one
                                                                                       can still find mišni sir, whose preparation dates
                                                                                       back to the very beginnings of cooking: milk
                                                                                       which has curdled naturally in a sheepskin. Or
                                                                                       wild oysters enjoyed by man today in the same
                                                                                       way as his predecessors, of long, long ago. Pick
                                                                                       them from the sea, open them and swallow
                                                                                       them with a sigh of unadulterated pleasure.
                                                                                       Grilled fish, prepared simply but with great
                                                                                       care, are offered in the same restaurants where
                                                                                       one can savour the unique Skradin risotto
                                                                                       which, almost like an alchemist’s ritual, takes
                                                   TourisT board of The                12 hours to prepare, and in which meat fibres
                                                counTy of Šibenik - knin               are gently transformed into quite new gastro-
                                             Fra N.Ružića bb; 22000 Šibenik            nomic substances.
                                                      Tel.: +385 22 219 072
                                                      Fax: +385 22 212 346             Sir iz mišine /
                                                    e-mail:         mišni Sir
                                        In the mountainous hinterland of the Zadar,
                                                                                       Šibenik, Split and Dubrovnik clusters, cheese
                                                                                       made from sheep milk is produced following the
                                                                                       ancient method: it is allowed to age in a sheep-
                                                                                       skin. It is not shaped into any particular form,
                                                                                       but comes in small grainy lumps and is delivered
                                                                                       to markets in the sheepskins in which it has

                                                                                                                  croatian GaStronomy   25
04                dalmatia                                                               šibenik region

                                                                                                                                                      iN dalmaTia almoNds aRe used NoT                      FResh TuNa Fish cauGhT iN The seas                     The local populaTioN eNjoys TheiR
                                                                                                                                                      oNly FoR cakes buT also FoR savouRy                   aRouNd The koRNaTi aRchipelaGo is                      shellFish jusT as much as did TheiR
                                                                                                                                                      dishes.                                               ideal FoR GRilliNG oR FoR caRpaccio.                   FoReFaTheRs dowN The ceNTuRies.

                                                                                                                                                    In the hinterland of Šibenik sir iz mišine, produced in the
                                                                                                                                                          traditional way - allowing sheep milk to cure in
                                                                                                                                                      sheep skin sacks - is still a treasured specialty.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        haRmoNy oF
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        traDition anD
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The modeRN
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        way oF liFe:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        wiTh home-
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        cureD proSciut-
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        To, cheese aNd

                                                                                                                                                    ŽiŽula                                                           crop is consumed fresh, thus giving diligent housewives no
                                                                                                                                                    iula, Zizyphus jujube, or jujube, growing wild and requir-     opportunity to turn them into a more permanent preserve,
                                                                                                                                                    ing no special care, is greatly appreciated by people living     such as jam.
                                                                                                                                                    in the Zadar and Šibenik areas. It would probably be just as        In Istria the fruit are immersed in rakia, with the addition
                                                                                                                                                    popular among tourists, except for the fact that it arrives on   of a small amount of sugar, and left for two weeks in the sun, a
 GRilled Fish will     matured, which lends it a strong, distinct and memorable          restaurants of Šibenik and its surroundings to save this   the markets after the summer season, and almost the entire       process which transforms the rakia into a delicious liqueur.       FiGS - a Fruit
   Release iTs Full    flavour. It is best when enjoyed as a part of a simple meal:      excellent dish from oblivion.                                                                                                                                                                  oF souTheRN
    FlavouR oNly iF    with flatbread or bread baked under peka (an earthen-                                                                                                                                                                                                            climes,
 we coaT iT usiNG a                                                                        aNoTheR specialTy is Food - such as meaT oR Fish,                                                                                                                                            delicious boTh
TwiG oF RosemaRy
                       ware or metal lid, covered with live coals) accompanied             oR eveN bRead - pRepaRed uNdeR a peka - a special                                                                                                                                            FResh aNd
dipped iN olive oil.   by strong, red Dalmatian wine.                                      lid made eiTheR oF casT iRoN oR clay aNd coveRed                                                                                                                                             DrieD.
                                                                                           wiTh live coals, which is also FouNd iN dalmaTia.
                       Kumbasice are what the folk in Skradin call their sausages.
                       Coarsely minced pork meat is combined with minced beef; the
                       mixture is seasoned with nutmeg and specially prepared garlic:
                       white Dalmatian wine is spiced with garlic and added to the
                       mince. The sausages are gently smoked and then hung out to
                       dry in the bora. They are an essential part of many dishes, but
                       can also be grilled while being basted with olive oil.

                       This is a popular folk dish which hails from northern parts
                       of the Šibenik and Split regions. Thin strudel pastry is
                       stuffed with a mixture of Swiss chard, olives, figs and olive
                       oil, rolled and baked (most often in a baker’s oven) and
                       normally eaten cold. A campaign is now under way by the

                       26   croatian GaStronomy                                                                                                                                                                                                             croatian GaStronomy   27

                    The people of SpliT   h a v e a v e r y S i m p l e but very convincing argument when claiming
                                                   superiority for the beauties of their city and its surroundings: Emperor diocletian
                                                       had the whole of the roman Empire from which to choose a place for his
                                                   magnificent palace. the location he chose is today’s split, its very heart, and the
                                                              source of its urban character, the Palace, remains to this day.

                                                          r     ising behind Split are the mountain massifs of Mosor and Biokovo,
                                                                their peaks often snow-swept, which nevertheless blunt the most fierce
     split region

                                                                onslaughts of the bora. Lying in front of it are the islands of Braè, Šolta,
                                                                Èiovo and, in the distance, Hvar and Vis, the sunniest of all the islands. A
                                                                wise man was the Emperor. Nature presents itself here in all its splendour
                                                                and generosity. Before him, the Greeks cultivated the grapevine and olives
                                                                on the Dalmatian islands, while those who did not wish to work the land
                                                                turned to hunting, gathering and fishing: fresh and sea water crabs and fish,
                                                                frogs and shellfish, mushrooms, blackberries and a variety of other berries,
                                                                wild-growing edible plants... The continuity of Dalmatian gastronomy is
                                                                impressive even by the criteria of the demanding Mediterranean cuisine.
                                                                And what Emperor Diocletian enjoyed in his time has been preserved for
                                                                                         us to enjoy, except that this bounty has been still
                                                                                         further enhanced by the best ideas of generations
                                                                                         of chefs. Principles of what is known as Dalmatian
                                                                                         minimalism are being strictly observed: top quality
                                                                                         ingredients, first and foremost the best types of
                                                                                         fish, are prepared in the shortest and the simplest
                                                                                         of ways – boiled, grilled or fried – so as not to
                                                                                         impair in any way the perfection of the natural
                                                                                         flavours of dory, dentex, gilthead or red mullet. At
                                                                                         the same time recipes were created, and endlessly
                                                                                         modified and perfected, which required a slow
                                                     TouriST Board of The                process of preparation over several days, with
                                               CounTy of SpliT - dalmaTia                complex mixtures of spices, such as, for instance,
                                                    Prilaz braće Kaliterna 10/I,         pašticada.
                                                          p.p. 430, 21000 Split
                                             Tel.: +385 21 490 032; 490 033              Pašticada
                                             Fax: +385 21 490 032; 490 033               In the hand-written cookery books of individual
                                                       E-mail:          families in Split, which are handed down and
                                                                added to from generation to generation, there can
                                                                                         be found as many as 20 or so different recipes for
                                                                                         one dish: pašticada. This is a meat dish the prepa-
                                                                                         ration of which takes, in accordance with old
                                                                                         recipes, days of patient preparation even before
                                                                                         it comes close to the stove. In the first phase,
                                                                                         meat is marinated in wine vinegar flavoured with

                                                                                                                      croatian Gastronomy   29
05       dalmatia                                                                    split                       region

                                                                                                                                                     hVarSKa gregada, a SorT oF brudeT a                    ocToPuS InK lendS noT only an           Just as in thE oLdEn days: shELLfish
                                                                                   VIšKa Pogača (FlaT bread From VIS) IS a TradITIonal
                                                                                                                                                     sPEciaLity of thE isLand of hvar.                      unuSual colour To a rISoTTo, buT        GriLLEd ovEr PinE nEEdLEs.
                                                                                   delIcacy From The ISland oF VIS: bread STuFFed
                                                                                                                                                                                                            aLso a vEry sPEciaL tastE.
                                                                                   with tomatoEs and onion, and somEtimEs with
                                                                                   PIcKled PIlchardS.
                                                                                ing islets, reefs and rocks in search of seagull eggs. An
                                                                                omelette made from seagull eggs is a quite unique dish; it is      The continuity of Dalmatian gastronomy is
                                                                                                                                                        quite something, even when compared to the
                                                                                actually regarded as a fish meal, although no fish is added
                                                                                to it. The bird practically lives on a diet of small fish, which
                                                                                lends a specific flavour to its eggs. The omelette matches
                                                                                perfectly with capers.
                                                                                                                                                     demanding Mediterranean cuisine.
                                                                                Luganige are the famous sausages from the Sinj area, but also
                                                                                known in Split and Šibenik, where they are an obligatory part      Gastronomy of thE                                                                                                      Prosciutto, Parti-
                                                                                of Christmas holiday festive feasts. Luganige are made from a      cEtina                                                                                                                 cuLarLy that cu-
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          rEd in istria and
                                                                                mixture of pork and lamb stuffed into lamb or sheep intestines,    The business people of the world have discovered the beauty
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          daLmatia, stands
                                                                                but what makes them special are the spicings: lemon juice and      of the canyons of the Cetina. They come to enjoy, through                                                              shouLdEr to sho-
                                                                                grated rind, pepper, coriander, cinnamon and garlic juice. The     them and around them, rafting, canoeing, riding, running,                                                              uLdEr with its
                                                                                traditional way in which these sausages are served in Sinj is      cycling, even parachuting. All those together combined                                                                 itaLian EquivaLEnt.
                                                                                somewhat curious: fried with rice cooked in chicken stock. In      make for a perfect team spirit-building exercise involving
                                                                                Šibenik they are cooked in beef stock, and the mouth-watering      extreme effort. The base for this unique exercise of body and
                                                                                aroma of luganige being prepared heralds a festive lunch.          soul is Trilj, and its catering establishments are more than                                                           daLmatian cuisinE
                                                                                                                                                   prepared to restore exhausted businessmen with a range of                                                              IS InconceIVable
                                                                                smutica                                                            first class culinary attractions. The sparklingly clear waters                                                         wIThouT brodeTTo,
                                                                                Reaching us from ancient times, possibly even from the pre-        of the Cetina River are a perfect habitat for fresh crayfish,                                                          a SouPy KInd oF
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          dish PrEParEd
                                                                                Slavic era, is the method of souring milk with wine and wine       trout and frogs. Trout, larger crabs and frog legs are grilled;
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          with fish, carrots,
                                                                                vinegar still practiced on some Dalmatian islands, Braè and        smaller varieties usually being set aside for buzara or brudet.                                                        tomatoEs and
                                different herbs. Pašticada is prepared from     Hvar in particular, which has developed into a very specific       But there are also special recipes, such as fried frog legs                                                            winE, and most
   Vis is the island            beef or yearling beef, mostly the muscle        drink. A sheep and a nanny goat are milked directly into           wrapped in slices of prosciutto, flavoured with rosemary and                                                           frEquEntLy sErvEd
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          with PoLEnta.
                                locally known as orah (walnut), although        a glass half-filled with red wine, the result being a foamy        then slightly cooked with the addition of red wine.
  of capers - they              horse meat and large game are also              beverage locally known as smutica, bikla or ðonkata. This is a         Similar natural and gastronomic attrac-
     seem to grow               used with equal success. In the second          favourite elixir of life which restores strength and good mood     tions are provided by the River
                                phase, the meat is well browned on all          to the tired and the weary.                                        Zrmanja.
  on almost every               sides, and in the third phase it is gently
                                                                                  InhabITanTS oF VIS PIcKle moTar (cryThmum marITI-
 stone by the sea.              stewed in gravy containing dried fruit,           mum l., FamIly oF Fennel), or rocK SamPhIre, a
                                predominantly prunes, and a number                mEditErranEan PLant with succuLEnt LEavEs, in
                                of spices such as cloves, nutmeg, laurel          winE vinEGar, Just as thEy do with caPErs.
                                leaf, pepper, with the addition of a little
                                wine and prosecco being added from
                                time to time. Old recipes insist that the
                                dish not be eaten immediately after the
                                dish is cooked, however long and over
                                however gentle a heat it had been cooked.
                                Pašticada, the old masters will tell us, must
                                be allowed to cool slowly, be cut into
                                chunks, browned again and only then
              served in its own strained juices.
                 Gnocchi, normally served with pašticada, must be cooked
              just prior to being served. Although traditional pašticadas
              have a very strong, full bodied flavour, it is not uncommon
              to grate some hard sheep cheese over the gnocchi.

              sEaGuLL EGGs
              Come springtime, the people of Lastovo visit the surround-

              30   croatian Gastronomy                                                                                                                                                                                                         croatian Gastronomy   31

     dubrovnik region   Survey pollS and   e x p e r i e n c e h a v e S h o w n that there are large numbers of people in
                                                      the world who have not heard of Croatia, but have heard of Dubrovnik. When
                                                     people catch their first sight of the city, be it from a plane, car or ship, the view
                                                                                etches itself into their memory.

                                                         t      he incredible feeling for urban harmony, the power of creation which
                                                                enabled man to complete its construction, begun by the fierce geomor-
                                                                phology of the Mediterranean, possesses the same power to amaze as
                                                                it did centuries ago, combined with the miracle of survival that has
                                                                survived wars, earthquakes, fires and epidemics. The genius of the people
                                                                of Dubrovnik has manifested itself in all fields of human endeavour,
                                                                including gastronomy. The mighty, redoubtable walls of Dubrovnik and
                                                                the Republic had their counterpoint in the high mobility, investigative,
                                                                mercantile and adventurous spirit of the mariners of Dubrovnik and their
                                                                fascinating fleet of elegant sailing ships, at times unrivalled anywhere
                                                                in the world. Notwithstanding all the benefits of the clime and the soil
                                                                around Dubrovnik, on the Pelješac peninsula and the nearby islands,
                                                                                         the Republic’s mariners never returned from
                                                                                         their voyages without seeds, plants, spices and,
                                                                                         yes, culinary ideas, from distant exotic lands. It
                                                                                         can therefore come as no surprise to learn that
                                                                                         culinary multiculturalism has been practiced in
                                                                                         Dubrovnik for centuries. In the contemporary
                                                                                         catering of this particular area, this wonderful
                                                                                         tradition is reflected in a wide range, from the
                                                                                         popular cuisine prepared over an open fire or
                                                                                         on a grill, found in the villages of Konavle, to
                                                                                         the most luxurious dishes served in the finest
                                                                                         restaurants where meals are enhanced by the
                                             TouriST Board of The counTy                 view of the city walls.
                                                   of duBrovnik - nereTva
                                                  Cvijete Zuzorić 1/I, p.p. 259,         Cheese of Dubrovnik
                                                               20000 Dubrovnik           In the surroundings of Dubrovnik there is a tradi-
                                                        Tel.: +385 20 324 999            tion of producing hard sheep milk cheese formed
                                                        Fax: +385 20 324 224             into small, flat cakes. During the maturing period
                                                 e-mail:          it is regularly doused with olive oil. Indeed, many
                                                          Dubrovnik restaurants keep on their shelves large
                                                                                         glass containers in which these little cheeses are
                                                                                         stored in olive oil.

                                                                                         T h e n e r e T va e sT ua ry
                                                                                         The wild, striking features of the Neretva River are so

                                                                                                                       CroaTian GasTronomy   33
06                dalmatia                                                dubrovnik                                           region

                                                                                                                                                                      raisin, DrieD Grape – a TasTe of...                   The nereTva river reGion is a True                  fruTTi Di mare risoTTo is a musT on The
     RoŽaTa, oTher-amazing that the visitor, cruising through the labyrinth                                                                                                                                                 heaven for any Connoisseur of fine                  menus of resTauranTs anD Taverns.
    Wise knoWn as  of its backwaters, would undoubtedly be prepared                                                                                                                                                         fooD.
  Creme Caramel,   to settle for a modest sandwich just to be able
   is a TraDiTional

                                                                                                                                                                    The ingenious folk of dubrovnik have
                   to concentrate on the constant changes
        DesserT of
        Dubrovnik, of landscape around him. But it has
  maDe from eGGs   to be made quite clear that the
      anD Caramel. estuary of this river is just as
                   much a paradise on Earth for                                                                                                                              demonstrated their abilities in many fields,
                   gastronomes, for its land and
                   its subterranean region, its
                   waters and its air are replete
                                                                                                                                                                       including gastronomy.
                   with species simply made
                   for an incredible culinary                                                                                                                                                                every kinD of           because its consumption, even in small quantities, boosts
                   pleasure.                                                                                                                                                                                 fish, prepareD
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     life’s energies and vitality, and it is therefore attributed
                                                                                                                                                                                                             by an experT,
                       The first attraction                                                                                                                                                                  proviDes a TasTe        with powerful aphrodisiac properties. At the beginning
                   undoubtedly is the eel, the                                                                                                                                                               To remember.            of August, mullet from the Neretva estuary start out on
                   enjoyment of which dates as far                                                                                                                                                                                   their course for the Pelješac peninsula, always on the
                   back as the times of the Roman                                                                                                                                                                                    same day and always along the same route. On Pelješac,
                   emperors, Vespasian in particular, as the                                                                                                                                                                         buterga is savoured in one way only: thinly sliced, and
                                       archaeological finds in the                                                                                                                                                                   accompanied by bread and wine. Buterga slices resemble
                                       village of Vid tell us. Its flavour is                                                                                                                                                        ducats, and that is how they are valued too! Alongside the
           Paradižet, a                guaranteed first and foremost by the waters           criteria that set the oysters of Ston apart from the competition                                                                        oysters of Ston, butarga is the most outstanding specialty
  dubrovnik variation                  in which it lives; visitors are not a little          and make them distinct. The sea currents in its environment                                                                             of Pelješac and the Bay of Ston. Butarga slowly melts in
                                       surprised to see a fisherman reaching down            carry large quantities of minerals, the traces of which impart a       b u Ta rG a                                                      the mouth, releasing waves of
  of "floating islands"                to drink the water on which he is sailing and         very elegant and unique flavour. On the other, northern, end of        Butarga is a fish extract, a powerful concentrate of proteins    powerful flavour and provid-
                                       fishing. Eels being snakelike, swift, slippery
- that famous dessert                  and crafty, qualities they amply prove by
                                                                                             the Croatian Adriatic the oysters of the Lim canal have made a         and hormones prepared by drying the roe of the grey              ing a unique experience not                                     The olD markeT
                                                                                             name for themselves. Connoisseurs, for their part, do their best       mullet. It is highly valued not only because it is scarce, but   readily forgotten.                                              in The CenTre of
  of viennese cuisine.                 the fact of their incredible survival, from           to, along with the cultivated ones, acquire wild oysters. Especially                                                                                                                                    ToWn.
                                       their spawning grounds in the Sargasso                attractive are the oysters from the mouth of the Krka River where
                                       Sea to their habitat in the Neretva estuary,          it flows into the Adriatic Sea. In Croatia, along with the treat
                                       catching them takes a great deal of skill             of eating raw oysters, the younger generation of chefs is serving
                                       and experience. The largest examples are              them batter-fried, grilled, in soups and as an oyster risotto.
                                       always the females, males usually being half
                                       their size. Throughout the autumn eels are               in The surrounDinGs of Dubrovnik sheep milk has been
                                       bigger and fatter, and for most connoisseurs             useD for The proDuCTion of Cheese for CenTuries.
                                       those caught in spring are more appreci-
                                       ated. However, it is the very fat of the eel
                                       that guarantees the juicy texture of meat
                                       when prepared by a master. Probably the
                                       best way of preparing eels is on a small spit
                                       with 5-10 cm-long pieces skewered onto it.
                                       The fat melts slowly, soaking into muscles,
                                       and the surplus drains off. Eels can also be
                                       grilled, or prepared in a brodetto. In this
                                       red-coloured dish eels are often accompa-
                   nied by frogs, which are another great gastronomic attraction
                   of the estuary. Wild ducks and coots round off this list.

                         The oysTers of sTon
                         Debates on which are the best oysters in the world are endless
                         – it is difficult to establish a final set of criteria. Among the
                         candidates are certainly the oysters of Ston. And while the final
                         appraisal is subjective, there are, nevertheless, some objective

                         34   CroaTian GasTronomy

          ThroughouT hisTory   T h e r o l e o f s l a v o n i a has always been to feed croatia. the fertile
                                            Pannonian plain, with its unparalleled agricultural potentials, has attracted
                                        civilizations since prehistory. Generous land yielded riches, riches gave rise to the
                                             development of culture, and an environment of high culture was an ideal
                                         place for gastronomy to flourish, as it has done for thousands of years. Powerful
                                           influences from the east and the West were resolved through confrontations
                                                   on the battlefield, but also through cohabitation in the kitchen.

                                           a            combination of Austro-Hungarian, Oriental and indigenous Croatian
                                                        gastronomic ideas amid strongly based agriculture has resulted in a
                                                        readily recognizable Slavonian cuisine based on top quality ingredients.
                                                        In addition to all the previously mentioned influences, which can be
                                                        accurately determined from the historical aspect, significant traces were
                                                        also left by the manner in which food was prepared back in nomadic
                                                        times and during the great migrations. Cooking in the open is still the
                                                        most popular form of Slavonian gastronomy, and it engenders a great
                                                        deal of passion, emotion and nostalgia. Sitting around a fire over which
                                                        a cauldron gently bubbles away, around barbecues and spits, with horses
                                                        and carriages not far away, on the banks of the Rivers Drava and Danube,
                                                        in the wetlands of Baranja, to the strains of violins and tambouritzas: now
                                                                                 that spells an atmosphere of some considerable
                                                                                 power! All of the brightest amongst the stars of
                                                                                 Slavonian gastronomy are the masters of dishes
                                                                                 prepared in a cauldron, a variety of fish and meat
                                                                                 paprikash, but they are just as good at preparing
                                                                                 dishes cooked on the spit, from the small, forked
                                                                                 spit used to cook a carp over hot coals, to the
                                                                                 more majestic, where oxen are slowly turned and
                                                                                 roasted throughout the night. Slavonia is indeed
                                                                                 a cornucopia, which is equally generous in its
                                 TourisT Board of The CounTy                     hospitality and where dishes are rarely cooked
                                               of osijek - Baranja               for less than ten or more diners. The Slavonians
                                 Šetalište kardinala F. Šepera 1d/ii,            are a jolly lot; they enjoy company and their
                                                             31000 osijek        gastronomy is simply tailored to that end.
                                              tel.: +385 31 214 852
                                              Fax: +385 31 214 853               Kulen and
                                          e-mail:             Kulenova seKa
                                                      Kulen, or kulin, is the most prestigious, most
                                           For a detailed list of county tourist appreciated and yes, the most expensive sausage-
                                             Boards, please refer to page 54.    type product, not only in Slavonia but across
                                                                                 Croatia. The recipe to which it is made seems
                                                                                 very simple: the best parts of pork cleaned of
                                                                                 all fatty and connective tissue, ground paprika,
                                                                                 garlic and salt are the ingredients used to fill a
                                                                                 meticulously cleaned intestine. But as they say,

                                                                                                            croatian Gastronomy   37
07                slavonia
                                                                                                                                                         Good Fish-PaPriKash must contain as                   Freshly Ground red PaPriKa as an                       intense, hot Flavours are a synonym
                   it is not what but how something is made; every nuance            being a thin one, special care is required when filling the         many tyPes oF Fish as PossiBle.                       addition to Fresh cottaGe cheese - a                   oF slavonian Gastronomy.
                   is important in the making of kulen and can be a crucial          casing; this has to proceed slowly and carefully, since a                                                                 simPly irresistiBle comBination.
                   factor at the Kuleniada – a national competition of the           single small air bubble can prove disastrous during the

                                                                                                                                                       Cooking in the open is just as popular in Slavonia
                   grand masters of the makers of kulen.                             curing period. Once the filling is completed the casing is
                                          The pig must not be too young, but         additionally salted in brine for up to five days; then, the
                                      rather large, weighing over 180 kg. The        casing is rinsed well and tied in order to retain the tradi-
 In Croatia the penny
 bun has always been
                                      breeds most sought after are Mangulica
                                      and the black Slavonian pig. Its diet is
                                                                                     tional shape even after a curing period of several moths.
                                                                                     If the winter is cold and dry kulen is smoked every third               as it has always been, involving a great deal of
   the most treasured                 the key to the quality of meat, the best
                                      being from pigs allowed to freely roam the
                                                                                     day, if it is warm and damp, smoking is carried out every
                                                                                     day. The smoking period takes a month, or longer, until it          passion, emotions and even nostalgia.
  among mushrooms,                    forests and copses of Slavonia and feeding     acquires a dark brown colour. The optimum curing period
                                      on, among other things, acorn of the           in cold, airy premises, primarily attics, is about half a year,
and the local popula-                 famous Slavonian oak. It is believed, and      but it is a longstanding tradition in Slavonia that kulen is                                                    slavonia is
      tion is skilled in              for quite a few it is the normal practice,     eaten at Easter. When the curing is completed, the kulen                                                        also KnoWn
                                                                                                                                                                                                     For its many       salenjaci
                                      that the best results are achieved if meat     is stored, and the best way of storing it is in cereal grain                                                                       Today, cakes made with pork fat seem like some distant
        recognizing it.               is chopped by hand rather than minced,         or in bran. Discussions and squabbles extend from the
                                                                                                                                                                                                     tyPes oF
                                                                                                                                                                                                     GraPe.             example of gastro-archaeology, but when those who today are
                                      but there is also a school of compromise:      optimal methods of preparation, making, curing, storage                                                                            old were young, salenjaci were one of the most common desserts
                                      the best parts of meat are chopped by          to serving; they are vigorous and never ending. While                                                                              in many parts of the Slavonian and Zagreb clusters. Flaky pastry
                                      hand for taste, while the rest is minced       most connoisseurs claim that kulen should be cut into                                                                              was made with minced fat, and stuffed with apricot or plum
                                      in order to achieve the consistency that       finger-thick slices, there are those who believe this to be                                                                        jam, or with walnut filling, prior to baking.
                                       kulen should possess. Garlic is usually       sacrilege and that this, the best of Croatian sausages,
                                           strained into the mixture. Of particu-    can be fully savoured only if cut thinly and served on a                                                                           Poderane Gaće
                                               lar importance is the right choice    wooden platter.                                                                                                                    (riPPed Pants)
                                                    of top quality ground paprika,                                                                     available on Croatian markets, since they are bred in a          Quite apart from their taste of traditional popular cakes,
                                                    and the ratio of sweet and hot   vineyard Gastronomy                                               number of fish farms. However, there are those who know          poderane gaæe owe their survival in no small measure to their
                                                    paprika used, since it is this   In recent years the famous wine producers of Slavo-               that the range of fish on offer is far more varied: catfish      highly memorable name. Rectangular-shaped cakes, the main
                                                 spice which ultimately gives the    nia have won world acclaim, which has resulted in an              and horned pout (liked for practical reasons because it          ingredients of which are flour, sugar and eggs, with a touch of
                                    product a sharpness that is mild, noble and      increased number of visits by gastronomes. Organized              has no small bones, just the spine) can often be found in        rum for a fulsome aroma, are nicked in two or three places
                   in no way aggressive. The quantity of salt requires a preci-      groups arriving for wine tasting are also offered a               continental fishmongers. Somewhat rarer is the very tasty        before being fried in hot oil, the finished article resembling a
                   sion that allows for not the minutest mistake.                    corresponding culinary array. This growing interest has           pike perch and pike. Rarely, one can chance upon tench,          ripped piece of cloth.
                      The prepared mixture is stuffed into different natural         prompted the wine makers of Slavonia to launch their              a rather fatty but exquisitely flavoursome fish. Lately, in
                   casings, but the best for kulen is a meticulously cleaned and                                                                                                                                                                                                           Kulen or Kulin
                                                                                     own catering establishments.                                      Zagreb’s Dolac market it has been possible to obtain, at                                                                            - the most hiGhly
                   treated blind gut of a pig. The secondary choices are the                                                                           more than reasonable prices, smoked common bream,                                                                                   valued salami-tyPe
                   bladder and the small intestine of a pig, or a large bovine’s     F r e s h Wat e r F i s h a n d                                   an extremely tasty fish but best appreciated by the more                                                                            Product oF
                   intestine. When the kulen mixture is stuffed into smaller         Fish PaPriKash                                                    patient connoisseur, as it is full of tiny bones. Eels cannot                                                                       slavonia.
                   intestines it is known as kulenova                                Carp and trout are the most                                       be bred in captivity but they do appear in fishmongers’
                   seka (kulen’s sister).                                            common freshwater fish                                            shops. Among other types of fish found in clear and cold
                      Kulen being a thick                                                                                                              rivers, which are of interest to gastronomes, is the grayling,
                   sausage, and kulenova                                                                                                               but one has to go out and catch it as it almost never
                   seka also never                                                                                                                     appears on the markets.
                                                                                                                                                          There is a fish dish known as paprikash, logically named
                                                                                                                                                       fish paprikash, regarded as one of the most outstand-
      all croatian                                                                                                                                     ing Slavonian specialties, but which can also be found
             Flour                                                                                                                                     in Zagreb, particularly on Fridays. A good fish paprikas
    From slavonia.                                                                                                                                     demands as many types of fish as possible. It is prepared
                                                                                                                                                       in a small (or sometimes not so small) cauldron and
                                                                                                                                                       cooked over an open fire. Its main spice is paprika, hot
                                                                                                                                                       and sweet. Hungarians in Croatia are renowned producers
                                                                                                                                                       of top quality paprika, both ground and crushed. In the
                                                                                                                                                       vicinity of Vukovar, especially in the village of Èakovci
                                                                                                                                                       (not to be confused with the town of Èakovec), hot and
                                                                                                                                                       sweet paprika of the highest world quality is grown, dried,
                                                                                                                                                       crushed and ground.

                         38   croatian Gastronomy                                                                                                                                                                                                              croatian Gastronomy   39

          Central Croatia   b o r d e r s w i t h h u n g a r y in the north, slovenia to the west, with Bosnia
                                                and Herzegovina in the east, and in the south it approaches fairly
                                         close to the adriatic sea. geographical maps reflect an intricate combination
                                                 of ethnic influences out of which issued the culinary patterns of
                                           small regions: Zagorje, Prigorje, Međimurje, Banovina and at the southern
                                                                     edge of Lika and gorski kotar.

                                         c          roatian language dialects spoken in these areas sometimes differ one from
                                                    another to such an extent that a foreigner is often led to believe that they
                                                    are in fact different languages. The same applies to the recipes which include
                                                    all the wealth of middle class, popular and rural cuisines. In the livestock
                                                                                       breeding areas to the south of the cluster
                                                                                       cuisine is based on simple dishes such as
                                                                                       polenta (localy known as pura) cooked
                                                                                       slowly in the hearth for hours and, when
                                                                                       done, soured milk, fresh cottage cheese
                                                                                       or butter is poured over it. Until recently
                                                                                       regarded as pauper’s fare, these dishes are
                                                                                       today highly regarded as rustic examples of
                                                                                       the culinary arts. Moving northwards, this
                                                                                       pastoral atmosphere at the south of this
                                                                                       cluster undergoes a complete change, as for
                                                                                       instance in Varadin. This Baroque town
                                                 tourist board of the                  still preserves and maintains its tradition
                                       County of Krapina - Zagorje                     of following the recipes of upper middle
                                 Zagrebačka 6, 49217 Krapinske Toplice                 class cuisine of the age of Baroque, clearly
                            tel.: +385 49 233 653; Fax: +385 49 233 653                evidenced in the way that game is prepared
                                                     E-mail:            and served with meticulously prepared
                                                            sauces. Castles and shepherd’s huts are the
                                                                                       dividing line, both the opposites and the
                                                 tourist board of the                  unity of cultural heritage, but also places
                                          County of sisaK-moslavina                    where today, picturesque restaurants have
                                       S. i A. Radića 28/II; 44000 Sisak;              opened their doors.
                                                      tel.: +385 44 540 163
                                                      Fax: +385 44 540 164             Prga
                                             E-mail:              The traditional cheese of Podravina, which
                                                 For a detailed list of County Tourist has recently been rescued from oblivion
                                                   Boards, please refer to page 54.    and is now ever more frequently found
                                                                                       in town markets, is called prga, or prgica.
                                                                                       Several variations of its production are
                                                                                       known, the most common method being
                                                                                       as follows: strained fresh cottage cheese
                                                                                       is mixed with cream; salt and ground red
                                                                                       paprika are added, and sometimes garlic.

                                                                                                           croatian gastronomy   41
08        central croatia
                                                                                                                                                                 cEntraL croatia is rEnownEd as an                       heRe, The Penny Bun IS MoST oFTen            A loAF oF oven-BAKed BReAd, MAde
              The mixture is shaped into small cones which are left to air                                                                                       AReA FoR ITS wIde RAnge And weAlTh                      EatEn in comBination witH Eggs, a Bit        FRoM hoMe-gRown CoRn MeAl, CAn
              dry, but it can also be smoked.                                                                                                                    oF vegeTABleS.                                          oF BACon And onIon.                          weIgh uP To 10 Kg.

                                      s i r i v r H n j E (or as
Ground red paprika,                   somE wouLd say, cottagE cHEEsE                                                                                          A good fish paprikas demands as many types
hot or sweet, is the                  and smEtana)

   main condiment
                                      Fresh cottage cheese and smetana are so
                                      popular among Croats that this edible
                                                                                                                                                                            of fish as possible and it is cooked in
     of these parts,
  one which Croats
                                      syntagm has even appeared on jumbo
                                      posters used in political election campaigns!                                                                                a small cauldron over an open fire.
                                      He who cherishes sir i vrhnje most can usually
                                      be assured of a great empathy among voters.
  adopted from the                    The cheese in question is freshly curdled,                                                                              on offer is far more varied: catfish and horned pout (liked for                                                               FISh-PAPRIKASh
        Hungarians.                   gently strained cow milk cheese, formed                                                                                 practical reasons because it has no small bones, just the spine)                                                              CooKed In A
                                      into round cakes of ½ kg or so, the quality         wARM heARTed And hoSPITABle, The wIne PRoduCeRS oF                  can often be found in continental fishmongers. Somewhat rarer                                                                 cauLdron ovEr an
                                                                                          sLavonia arE aLways HaPPy to invitE visitors to tHEir                                                                                                                                             oPen FIRe, MAde
                                      of which greatly depends on the quality                                                                                 is the very tasty pike perch and pike. Rarely, one can chance
                                                                                          cELLars to tastE tHEir winEs.                                                                                                                                                                     exCluSIvely FRoM
                                      of grazing, which in this particular case is                                                                            upon tench, somewhat fatty but with an exquisite flavour.                                                                     FReShwATeR FISh.
                                      excellent. Although the Zagreb cluster is the    Gutted and salted it is affixed to a forked branch which is then       At Zagreb’s Dolac Market, it has recently been possible to
              centre of the sir i vrhnje tradition, this type of cheese is produced    stuck into the ground close to live coals, thus allowing the fish      purchase, at a more than reasonable price, smoked common
              in many locations of this cluster, as well as in certain parts of        to slowly “melt”. Larger specimens, cut into slightly thicker          bream – very tasty but best appreciated by the very patient
                  Slavonia. It is sold exclusively in the markets.                     slices, are fried in pork fat. Carp from a fish farm can also be       connoisseur, as it is full of tiny bones. Eels cannot be bred in
                                Cottage cheese and smetana are eaten primar-           top of the range fish if both water and food are of good quality       captivity but they do appear in fishmongers’ shops. Among
                            ily completely fresh, and serving is simplicity itself:    – as is the case at the fish farm in Crna Mlaka.                       other types of fish found in clear and cold rivers and which are
                           smetana is poured over cheese – one measure (a                                                                                     of interest to gastronomes, is the grayling, but one has to catch
              measure being an old one, amounting to c 1.5 dcl) of cheese to           trout                                                                  it oneself, since it almost never appears in the markets.
              one or two measures of smetana, with a little salt and red paprika       Californian trout have spread throughout the fresh waters                  A dish known as paprikash made from fish and therefore
              sprinkled over it. It is also traditional that the bread which is        of Europe, Croatia included. But in certain locations the              logically known as fish paprikash, is regarded as one of the most
              served with this simple dish is made from maize, with unleav-            indigenous Croatian brown trout (Salmo trutta morpha fario)            outstanding specialties of Slavonia, which can also be found in
                         ened dough, and baked to produce a thick, crunchy             has survived, and it is indeed a specialty of the first order. It is   Zagreb, particularly on Fridays. A good fish paprikas demands
                               crust. The bread is baked in large, round forms,        identifiable by its red spots, its meat being significantly more       as many types of fish as possible and it is cooked in a small (or
                                sometimes weighing as much as 10 kg. The most          reddish, juicer and flavoursome than Californian trout. The            sometimes not so small) cauldron over an open fire. Its main
                                usual side dishes for cottage cheese and smetana       brown trout is preserved in the Gacka River – a cult fishing           spice is paprika, both hot and sweet.
                       are radishes and spring onions. The mixture is also used        ground for trout lovers from all over the world, and it can
               to make a variety of spreads, the taste depending on the ingre-         also be found in the Rivers Slunjèica and Èabranka. The                                                                                                                                              trout coatEd in
               d i e n t s : chopped spring onion and ground red paprika,              locally preferred method of preparing it is to douse it in corn                                                                                                                                      BReAd FlouR And
                                 sometimes garlic - especially when young, chives      meal and to fry it (the miller’s way). There is a company                                                                                                                                            griLLEd arE a
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            SPeCIAlTy oF ThIS
                                 – particularly the wild-growing variety, dill, crab   called “Leko” which produces excellent smoked trout,                                                                                                                                                 arEa.
                              grass, thyme or marjoram. Well mixed fresh cheese        which can be found on Zagreb’s Dolac Market.
                          and smetana make a delicious topping for broad, home-
                      made noodles, often accompanied by a sprinkling of small         F R e S h wAT e R F I S h A n d
                   pieces of fried bacon, and, according to taste, with garlic. In     FISh PAPRIKASh
                   some parts of continental Croatia, in particular the Slavonian      Carp and trout are the most common fresh water fish found on
                    region, pasta prepared in this way is placed in a very hot oven    Croatian markets, since they are bred in a number of fish farms.
                     in order to obtain a nice golden, crisp crust.                    Those in the know, however, are aware that the range of fish

                     carP                                                                                                            tHis rEgion is
                                                                                                                                     Known FoR ITS
                     The large number of fish farms worldwide has made carp                                                          wHitE variEtiEs
                     an inexpensive if undervalued fish. Sadly, it is often bred                                                     oF gRAPe.
                      in poor quality water and fed a poor quality diet. In
                       complete contrast are the carp bred in Vransko jezero
                        (Vrana lake) near Biograd, regarded as among the
                         best in Europe. Although locally it is grilled, some
                          methods used in Slavonia seem much better suited.

               42   croatian gastronomy                                                                                                                                                                                                                          croatian gastronomy   43

         Above everything   e l s e , Z A g r e b i s t h e c o n v e r g i n g point as well as being the
                                              intersection of all the regional gastronomies of croatia, and more
                                       often than not offers a selection of the best from each of them. this is clearly
                                           visible on the city markets – 13 larger and 10 smaller ones, but most
                                     of all at the central market known as Dolac, ideally located only meters from the
                                     central square, on an elevation at the same level as the cathedral. in every res-
                                                       pect this is the most prestigious market in croatia.

                                            i     ts activities precede its very existence, since back in the 19th century lively,
                                                  often acrimonious discussions raged over the location of Zagreb’s central
                                                  marketplace, what it should look like, who should build it, maintain it and,
                                                  of course, who should use it. For centuries, Zagreb has been trading in the
                                                  open and in accordance with strict rules. Records dating from 1425 tell us
                                                  that trading in fresh fish was defined with far more precision than it is today:
                                                  should they happen upon fresh fish that had been on display for too long, the
                                                  unforgiving market inspectors of the day would cut off the tails of such fish,
                                                  thus reducing them to second class goods.
                                                     The history of Dolac, from the first initiative for its construction to its
                                                  opening day, provides excellent material for a chronicle of scandals, one which
                                                  did nevertheless have a happy ending. Today, this is a market with an open-air
                                                                              section and a covered area on two levels, logically
                                                                              organized, well laid out and free flowing. The supply
                                                                              primarily reflects seasonal food production by
                                                                              regions. The most interesting in this wide selection
                                                                              of produce are products by small, family agricultural
                                                                              holdings. Although economic logic dictates that
                                                                              small producers should work together in order to
                                                                              survive the onslaught of cheap goods from the world
                                                                              markets, the logic of gastronomy shows us that small
                                                                              producers provide a fantastic impetus to quality
                                                                              produce and, in particular, to a high standard of
                                                                              gastronomy. Goods are sometimes more expensive
                                                                              on Dolac than on other Croatian markets, but that
                                             toUrist boArD oF                 is logical: regional markets are mostly supplied by
                                           the city oF ZAgreb                 local producers; to Zagreb markets they bring the
                                        Kaptol 5; 10000 Zagreb;               best that they can offer.
                                          tel.: +385 1 4898 555                   Dolac is therefore a daily meeting place for the
                                          Fax: +385 1 4814 340                culinary stars of Zagreb, known and unknown. In
                               E-mail:             their own words, this is where they start cooking.
                                           According to Ana Ugasrkoviæ, the rising star of the
                                                                              Zagreb gastronomic stage, good cuisine consists of
                                                                              90% of good buys. The ability to select the best
                                                                              ingredients at the optimal time in the season is the
                                                                              basic art of a good gastronome, one upon which top
                                                                              quality cuisine is based all over the world.

                                                                                                           croatian Gastronomy   45
09            zagreb                                       caPital oF croatian Gastronomic DEliGhts

                                                                                                                                                               PumPKins From thE vEGEtablE GarDEns                              Plums untrEatED with PEsticiDE maKE                    Quality vEGEtablEs anD Fruit From
       on Dolac,                                                                                                                                               oF ZaGorjE arE EatEn ovEn-roastED or                             suPErb homE-maDE jam.                                  small ProDucErs ProviDE ExcEllEnt
cEntral marKEt                                                                                                                                                 as an aDDition to bio-caKEs.                                                                                            EncouraGEmEnt For Quality Gastronomy.
        PlacE oF
  ZaGrEb, small
  ProDucErs oF
    all croatian
 rEGions brinG
                                                                                                                                                            The Dolac central market is a daily meeting place for
   thE bEst thEy
      can oFFEr                                                                                                                                                  the culinary stars of Zagreb, known and unknown.
                                                                                                                                                             In their own words, this is where they start cooking.
                                                                                                                                                            Potato is served to soak up the juices. When the abundance of                 its basis is various types of wild and semi-wild onion, certain
                                                                                                                                                            ingredients becomes too much, the true connoisseurs return                    grasses, edible flowers, and herbs. The method of preparing a
                                                                                                                                                            to the puritan Samobor version                                                mišanca is from a combination of popular culinary concepts
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          and skills. At the start of the season, in early spring, mišanca
                                                                                                                                                            P a P r E n j a c i (or PEPPEr biscuits)                                      can be eaten fresh, as a salad, dressed with wine vinegar
                                                                                                                                                            The pepper biscuit is an old recipe that could be found from the              and olive oil. It is quite delicious with                     the
                                                                                                                                                            eastern borders of Slavonian cluster to the southern border of the Split      addition of salt-pickled anchovies, olives,
                                                                                                                                                            region. Its main ingredients are flour, eggs and pepper, and its variations   capers and hard boiled eggs. Mišanca can                 Mišanca is a mixture
                                                                                                                                                            several. And since they symbolize the old, popular cuisine, the national      also be briefly cooked in boiling water and              of wild-grown, mostly
                      From Dolac, chefs return to their respective restaurants         placed on specially designed stoves – usually cleverly adapted       airline company serves them on its flights as small, sweet refreshment.       again served with a number of additions,
                   in which they offer their guests regional specialties, first and    metal barrels. In Zagore, Prigorje, Zagreb, but above all in         Today, it is produced, packaged and distributed by a pastry shop on           but which now extend to boiled potatoes,                 Mediterranean plants
                   foremost those from Dalmatia, but also from Istria, Slavonia,       Samobor, these kitchen contraptions, which go by the name            the island of Hvar, and from one in Zagreb – which has resulted in            chick-peas, broad beans, beans, lentils. Fish            - sometimes as many
                   Prigorje, Zagorje, the best dishes from Lika and Gorski kotar,      of kotlovina, as does the dish prepared in them, are the symbol      the biscuit becoming a Zagreb souvenir.                                       laid on a bed of mišanca and baked in the
                   but also from some Croatian communities outside Croatia – in        of merrymaking, good times and good food. Every gathering of                                                                                       oven in an earthenware dish, ranked at the               as 20 different kinds
                                                                                                                                                                                                              PaPrEnjaK, a
                   particular Herzegovinian and Bosnian specialties. Fish is often     people in the open is an excellent opportunity for a kotlovina.
                                                                                                                                                                                                              PEPPEr biscuit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          peak of gastronomy, is becoming ever more                - used fresh as salad
                   equally fresh in the restaurants of Zagreb as it is on the coast;   The basic recipe is simple and very rustic. Pigs’ legs are fried,                                                                                  inviting to the young stars of the culinary
                   the season of lamb from the islands begins in Zagreb; the first     or rather melted, in the pan, invariably with chopped onion.
                                                                                                                                                                                                              maDE From
                                                                                                                                                                                                              Flour, honEy,               arts in Croatia. The richness of genuine                 dressed with olive oil
                   white truffles are just as impatiently awaited in Zagreb as they    They are doused first with water and then with wine. Once                                                                                          Mediterranean aromas offered by mišanca,
                   are in Istria; selections of top of the range kulens regularly      this basic stock is prepared, pieces of meat are added, usually
                                                                                                                                                                                                              EGGs anD a GooD
                                                                                                                                                                                                              Pinch oF PEPPEr,            the power of essential oils contained in
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   and wine vinegar or,
                   arrive to chosen locations in Zagreb; a special gastronomic         pork cutlets. The secret of a good flavour lies in gentle, slow                                                        is a symbol oF
                                                                                                                                                                                                              thE olD PoPular
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          wild-grown plants, opens up new avenues                  briefly cooked, as a
                   week is dedicated to oysters from the Bay of Ston and the           cooking, as opposed to the fast grilling technique. Recipes                                                                                        into delightful culinary interpretations:
                   Lim channel in spring, on the feast day of St. Joseph, when         for kotlovina are varied and, in contrast to the recipe for the
                                                                                                                                                                                                              cuisinE anD an
                                                                                                                                                                                                              oFFicial ZaGrEb             mišanca in fritajas, or rather omelettes and
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   side dish to fish and
                   they are in their seasonal peak. But Zagreb also nurtures its       basic stock, can be very complex. The meat used can come                                                               souvEnir.                   pancakes, made into a sauce and served                   meat, but also to
                   own, authentic dishes known as “burghers’ cuisine”. This            in the form of sausages; but it can be chicken, veal, yearling                                                                                     over home-made pasta, cooked together
                   cuisine is the historical sediment of Austro-Hungarian cultural     beef, even game. All root vegetables, tomatoes, peppers,                                                                                           with lamb or kid over a gentle heat, cooked              other vegetables.
                   heritage. Some names and expressions are of German origin,          aubergines, even young beans and mushrooms find their way                                                                                          with dried mutton or proscuitto bone and
                   some are Austrian and Hungarian, and they are still in use          into a kotlovina in order to make the flavour as rich as possible.                                                                                 potatoes, combined with olives and mixed
                   today. Grenadir marš (Grenadier March – pasta with onion                                                                                                                                                               into flat cakes... This wonderful mixture
                   and potato), kajzeršmarn (Kaiserschmarn, a dessert made                                                                                                                                                                should be sought out, albeit under its
                   from pancake batter) appear from time to time on the                                                                                                                                                                   different names, in all the regions of the
                   menus of Zagreb’s restaurants which like sailing                                                                                         mišanca                                                                       Croatian Adriatic, but also on the markets
                   the nostalgic waves of the purger cuisine.                                                                                               Picking, gathering or catching only what nature herself                       of Zagreb. The wider the variety of plants
                                                                                                                                                            provides us, without any effort by the growers and breeders,                  included, the more appreciated mišanca is,
                   samoborsKa                                                                                                                               would be enough to experience endless culinary delights.                      and the touch for deciding on the correct
                   Kotlovina                                                                                                                                Frequently, such dishes are underappreciated since the                        ratio of individual plants, as per the recipe, is a sign of a chef
                   Large pans with wide rims, sometimes                                                                                                     ingredients grow in abundance across meadows, clearings and                   extraordinaire.
                   as much as 2 m in diameter, are                                                                                                          woods, and as a consequence do not fetch particularly good
                                                                                                                                                            prices. And ideal example of this kind is mišanca, that is, a                 m u s h r o o m s i n c r o at i a
                   Kotlovina - thE sEcrEt oF a                                                                                                              “mixture” of wild or semi-wild plants gathered in spring or early             Some twenty years ago Ivan Focht, philosopher, aesthetic of
                   GooD Flavour liEs in GEntlE,
                   slow cooKinG, as oPPosED to thE                                                                                                          summer, particularly in the Mediterranean regions of Croatia.                 music, biologist and a passionate mushroom expert, wrote to his
                   Fast GrilinG.                                                                                                                            Formerly, it consisted of some 20 or more plants, while today                 friend: “music and mushrooms came to us from the heavens.”

                   46   croatian Gastronomy                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      croatian Gastronomy   47
09                zagreb                                       caPital oF croatian Gastronomic DEliGhts

                                                                                                                                                                in rEcEnt yEars
    vrGanj, or thE                                                                                                                                               thE numbEr oF
                                                                                           tradition has it that should you ever chance upon a lone cep,         rEstaurants in
     PEnny bun, is
  thE most valuED                                                                          you should ask it quietly, “where is your brother?”, since they      croatia KEEPinG
     mushroom in                                                                           invariably grow in pairs. There are several methods used in          PacE with GrEat
      thEsE Parts,                                                                         their preparation. In Zagorje they are best served with eggs:          achiEvEmEnts
       anD is most                                                                                                                                              oF hautE cuisinE
                                                                                           a spot of pork fat, some sliced onion, sliced cep added and                 has bEEn
         PrEParED                                                                          gently cooked. Eggs are then blended into it and the mixture              constantly
   slicED, sautEED                                                                         fried to a soft texture. Another highly popular, delicious recipe           GrowinG.
  with onion, with                                                                         is Penny Bun soup, always with the addition of smetana and
       EGGs aDDED                                                                          vinegar. Mushrooms of all types are often grilled over live coals,
     at thE EnD oF
                                                                                           but it is the Penny Bun which is by far the best when cooked
      thE cooKinG
          ProcEss.                                                                         in this way: simply dipped into melted butter and placed on a
                                                                                           grill. When done they are sprinkled with salt and a few drops
                                                                                           of a fine alcoholic beverage and served with rye bread and a                                                                            carpet. The Swiss call it “poor man’s truffle”, to the English it is
                                                                                           slice or two of prosciutto or ham gently fried over the fire.                                                                           “Horn of plenty”, while Germans see it as a “deadly trumpet”.
                                                                                           It may be widespread, and indeed common, but the Penny                                                                                  Regardless of its name, however mythical or bizarre it may be,
                                                                                           Bun still remains one of the best and most highly regarded of                                                                           it still smells divinely and is perfect when pickled, eaten cold as
                                                                                           mushrooms. In the region of Gorski kotar there is a place called                                                                        salad, and is at its best when dried and ground into a powder.
                                                                                           Ravna Gora, where a “Day of mushrooms” is organized on an                                                                               This magic powder is then used as a spice, as that secret ingredi-
                                                                                           annual basis: mushroom hunters spend a day together looking                                                                             ent that every mushroom expert and mushroom lover simply
                                                                                           for Penny Buns which, needless to say, are consumed with great                                                                          must have in his or her kitchen.
                                                                                           relish at the end of the day.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Morel (or sMrčak)
                                                                                           chantErEllE                                                                                                                             No mushroom hunting adventure is more exciting than the
                                                                                           Should you chance to meet a peasant on the edge of a forest                                                                             hunt for morels, and he who hunts the morel, this magnificent
                  Back then this was a romantic confession of a scientist at the           and were to ask him if there are any mushrooms there, you                                                                               mushroom, is a very special person. In order to be successful
                  end of the road; today, it sounds more like a touristic slogan.          will make a mistake. Not because the man is secretive about                                                                             he is prepared to do what other mushroom gatherers do not
                  In the forests of Gorski kotar and Slavonia, alongside rivers,           his find, but because for him the word “mushroom” carries              sMrčak, or Morel - tradition has it that in the                  do. This is a strange mushroom which likes those places that
                  in the meadows of Lika, on islands, in Istria, in short, every-          a different meaning. Only an edible mushroom with which                villaGEs whErE FolK Eat a lot oF this blEssED                    other members of its family do not like, and is gathered with
                                                                                                                                                                  mushroom, bachElors arE FEw anD Far bEtwEEn
                  where, there exists the mysterious world of mushrooms which              he is familiar is a real mushroom, and this is limited to about        anD womEn arE always jolly.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   great passion and with a certain inexplicable feeling verging
                                     is an inexhaustible source of discussion and          ten varieties that form a part of traditional popular cuisine.                                                                          on sensuality. Every gatherer has his own secret hunting
                                     pleasures to both mushroom experts and                                                                                     Those mushrooms that rural folk do not know, or which are          grounds which he guards jealously. Spring is the season
  Over the last decade               gastronomes. At a time when mushrooms in                                                                                   not edible, are simply not regarded as mushrooms.                  which makes the hunter feel restless, and as soon as he feels
                                     Europe are being threatened by the destruc-                                                                                                                                                   the time has come, off he goes, for if he is only a few days
    the Zagreb region                tion of their habitat, and when some species                                                                               aGaric                                                             too late there will be nothing to find. It is a true pleasure to
     has nurtured and                have long disappeared, Croatia seems more                                                                                  A common and tasty mushroom, curious for the fact that it is       join the mushroom gatherers of Meðimurje or Gorski kotar,
                                     like a botanical garden, a protected oasis                                                                                 eaten on the islands. Islanders have always been oriented to       who organize traditional events and compete for the “Golden
 developed free-range                which everybody can enjoy. Everybody,                                                                                      the sea and meagre soil, putting their faith in their boats and    morel”, i.e. the largest and most beautiful specimen. Last year,
  strawberries, due to               from tourists and mushroom experts to                                                                                      their hoes. Mushrooms, however, seem to have escaped their         the first prize was won by a 43cm-high, 600g morel found
                                     scientists and ecologists. And long my this                                                                                attention, rujnica, or agaric, being an exception. (Indeed, on
the beneficial climatic              remain so.                                                                                                                 the island of Korèula the agaric is in fact called a “mushroom”,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                nEw olivE
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                GrovEs arE
conditions of the area                                                                                                                                          since members of that family which are not eaten are not                                                        sPrinGinG uP
                                           c E P (PEnny bun)                                                                                                    regarded as mushrooms!). They are eaten on the islands of                                                       alonG thE
                                           When one makes mention of the                                                                                        Lastovo, Korèula and Mljet. This is a firm-fleshed mushroom                                                     coastlinE EvEry
                                           mushrooms in Croatia, most people will                                                                               and is therefore suitable for a longer period of cooking. The                                                   yEar, anD olivE
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                oils ProDucED
                                           automatically think “Penny Bun.” The cep                                                                             traditional dish on Korèula is mushrooms in sauce: onion,                                                       by younG olivE
                                           is a mushroom that comes to everybody’s                                                                              tomato concentrate, potato, red wine, sugar and olive oil,                                                      GrowErs arE
                                           mind with its shape, divine fragrance,                                                                               cloves, salt and pepper; and there you have a delicious sauce.                                                  winninG intErna-
                                           majestic cap and charming plumpness. It                                                                              Fish is and was prepared in a similar way.                                                                      tional rEcoGni-
                                           has always been a most cherished mushroom
                                           in Croatia, one that anybody can recognize                                                                           horn oF PlEnty                            (crna trubača)
                                           despite the fact that there are some 30                                                                              The Horn of plenty is a mushroom which practically cannot be
                                           similar varieties in the same family, some of                                                                        mistaken for any other. Difficult to find, but when it is found
                                           which are listed as protected plants. Ancient                                                                        you realize you are surrounded by them, as if on a large, black

                        48   croatian Gastronomy                                                                                                                                                                                                                             croatian Gastronomy    49
09              zagreb                                         caPital oF croatian Gastronomic DEliGhts

                                                                                                                                                                     Garlic, EsPEcially whEn younG, is a                  barbEcuE - thErE is Practically no                       thErE arE many variations oF this
  younG culinary                                                                                                                                                     much FavourED FlavourinG.                            FooD that croats woulD not PrEParE                       simPlE, FinE caKE, baKED in oil, Known
 stars oF croatia                                                                                                                                                                                                         on a Grill.                                              as ustiPci in thE north anD FritulE in
   arE PromotinG                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   thE south.
thE usE oF local
   FooDstuFFs oF
  suPErb Quality
   in thE liGht oF
                                                                                                                                                                   Small producers provide a fantastic impetus
worlD Gastrono-
      mic trEnDs.
                                                                                                                                                                             to quality produce and, in particular, to
                                                                                                                                                                      a high standard gastronomy
                                                                                                                                                                                                            small ProDu-           and fresh bread which is usually dunked, and when food is
                                                                                                                                                                                                            cErs oFFEr             especially tasty the plate is finally cleaned off with a piece
                                                                                                                                                                                                            thEir chEEsEs in       of bread. Popular restaurants and inns frequently have
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Each oF thE 23
                                                                                                                                                                                                            marKEts in thE
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   special menus for marenda and gablec, and these dishes are
                                                                                                                                                                                                            croatian caPital       only cooked and served in late morning hours: bean soup
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   with pieces of bacon, off-cuts of prosciutto left on the bone,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   sausages (somewhat less common is dried mutton). This is a
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   classic dish which comes in countless variations and is just
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   as popular as gablec as it is as marenda. The second on the
                      in the area around Delnice. One of the ways of conserving            growing industry. And it has been proved that the best olives oils                                                                      list of popularity is tripice, or fileki, or as some would call it,
                      mushrooms is drying.                                                 in Croatia come from relatively small olive groves, where literally                                                                     tripe. Lamb tripe, which spread to continental parts from
                                                                                           every tree receives special attention and care. Certain customs         important and much cherished Croatian custom. In the            the coastal areas, is more infrequently met but more highly
                      olivEs anD olivE oil                                                 and practices, like washing the olives in the sea, make Croatian        Zagreb region and in some parts of the central region this      regarded than tripe from yearling cattle. Kid tripe is a real
                      Among the most successful revivals of ancient agricultures is the    olive oils even more special. The most common and widespread            meal is called gablec, along the Adriatic coast – from the      rarity and a cult dish. Paprikash and goulash occupy the third
                      regeneration of olive production. There are olive groves extend-     varieties in Croatia are indigenous: bua and oblica. Although the      Istrian peninsula to the Dubrovnik region – this vital social   place in popularity. Although cod is not dried in Croatia it
                      ing from the westernmost areas of Istria, down the length of the     practice of mixing different varieties is common, domestic olive        institution is known as marenda. And since this mid-morning     also enjoys a cult status among Croats, literally a must for
                      coastline, including islands large and small, down to eastern        growers recently began supplying a variety of oils, and this is where   meal is a widespread custom, the dishes served are also the     meals on Christmas Eve. As far as marenda is concerned,
                      borders of the Dubrovnik region, with new groves being planted       the indigenous varieties come into their own. The best oils are         most popular and mostly cheaper ones, eaten with a spoon        it is served mostly on Fridays, usually as a thick soup with
  a croatian lunch    every year. Young experts are winning prestigious acclaims both      often on offer in prestigious wine boutiques.
   is inconcEivablE   at home and abroad, for their oils, like that produced by multiple       Among purist connoisseurs an increasingly favoured hors                                                                                                                                                   sPit-roastinG, an
    without a souP,                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      anciEnt way oF
                                                         prize-winner, Sandi Chiavalone    d’oeuvre is fine olive oil, freshly baked top quality bread and
liKE this onE maDE                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       cooKinG FooD,
with PhEasant.                                                    from Vodnjan, being at   salt, nowadays becoming ever more popular even in exclusive                                                                                                                                                   arrivED in this
                                                                        very peak of the   restaurants. Possible additions to this magnificent simplicity                                                                                                                                                country From thE
                                                                            Mediter-       could be capers and highly appreciated fillets of salt-pickled                                                                                                                                                East.
                                                                               ranean      fish in olive oil, with few drops of good wine vinegar and a few
                                                                                  olive    slices of onion. Marinades made with raw fish in top quality
                                                                                           olive oil, in particular anchovies, sprinkled with the juice of
                                                                                           home grown lemons, are especially popular in the Split and
                                                                                           Zadar clusters. Baking is the old, traditional way of releasing
                                                                                           the bitter elements from olives. The baked olives are then kept
                                                                                           in olive oil and aromatized with Mediterranean herbs, primarily
                                                                                           rosemary, which is also the best way of enjoying them. Another
                                                                                            old custom is being revived, this time among bakers: pieces of
                                                                                             olive are mixed into bread dough, the result being deliciously
                                                                                             piquant bread. Green and black olives are used to produce a
                                                                                             spread, usually for bread, but smart chefs use it as a condiment
                                                                                             for filleted fish and a variety of meat escalopes.

                                                                                            GablEc anD marEnDa
                                                                                           (miD-morninG snacK)
                                                                                           The meal taken between breakfast and lunch is a very

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             croatian Gastronomy   51
                      50   croatian Gastronomy
09             zagreb                                         caPital oF croatian Gastronomic DEliGhts

                                                                                                                                                                         ZaGorsKi štruKli, thinly rollED                         Fish is oFtEn EQually FrEsh on thE                      bEans, chicKPEas anD lEntils Form
 Fancy combina-                                                                             collect veritable boutiques of different dry woods, which are then           Pastry FillED with a mixturE oF FrEsh                   marKEts oF ZaGrEb as it is on thE coast.                thE basis oF many orDinary DishEs.
  tion oF Potato                                                                            further enhanced through the addition of aromatic plants, such               cottaGE anD smEtana - savoury as an
     anD chEEsE                                                                                                                                                          hors-D'oEuvrE, swEEt as a DEssErt.
     maKEs this                                                                             as rosemary sprigs. Generally speaking, grilling is best when done
                                                                                            over plenty of live coals which produce a gentle heat, whereas
                                                                                                                                                                      All root vegetables, tomatoes, peppers, even
  orDinary mEal
Fully DElicious.                                                                            grilling over a fire is regarded as barbaric, or at least demonstrating
                                                                                            a certain lack of good taste and manners.

                                                                                            raŽanj                (sPit roastinG)                                             young beans find their way into a kotlovina
                                                                                                                                                                       in order to make the flavour as rich as possible.
                                                                                            Although somewhat less varied than grilling, the spit also allows
                                                                                            for the preparation of many dishes: from small ones for poultry
                                                                                            to massive ones for oxen. Spit roasting is common all over the
                                                                                            country and is the main feature of catering establishments along
                                                                                            the arterial roads, where spits function as a form of live advertis-      ciative of the earthenware peka. Food cooked under a peka,                                                      trDitional Fancy
                                                                                            ing. Most commonly spit roasted are suckling pigs, lambs and,             be it in a fireproof pot or directly on a stone slab, comprises                                                 brEaD sPrinKlED
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      wth salt.
                                                                                            less frequently, kids. This is a very ancient method of preparing         meat with vegetables, usually veal, lamb and yearling beef,
                                                                                            food, being imported to these parts from the East. But in the             covered with potatoes and other vegetables. Larger poultry is
                                                                                            good old days it was not young animals that were spit roasted,            also prepared in this way, and in the mountainous part of the
                                                                                            because the scarcity of meat dictated that an animal should reach         Kvarner region. Even if catering establishments provide only
                                                                                            its full adult size before being slaughtered. Traces of this ancient      bread baked in this way, their ratings are usually elevated.
                                                                                            tradition are still seen in Croatia in the custom of spit roasting
                                                                                            oxen, particularly for popular festivities. Central parts of the          blit va              (swiss charD)
                                                                                            Slavonian region are renowned for their masters of spit roasting          The entire Adriatic area is peopled by folk who find it hard to
                                                                                            an ox. However, folks from certain large villages in Slavonia,            imagine life without Swiss chard, so much so, in fact, that some
                                                                                            such as Gundinci, prefer a heifer since they know from much               have suggested (not entirely tongue in cheek) that this plant is
                                                                                            enjoyed experience that its meat is considerably juicier. Gentle          of such importance for Croats, particularly those living by the
                                                                                            heat and good meat are the keys to every successful spit roast.           sea, that it should form part of the new Croatian coat of arms.
                   potatoes, spiced with garlic, a la white or a la red – the differ-       Bearing in mind that there are practically no spices involved, the        Blitva is best when young, when its leaves are thin and soft, of     is a deep understanding of the genesis of local gastronomy: it
                   ence being the addition of tomato. Marenda is normally                   genuine quality of meat is necessarily a major factor. Spit roast-        a bright green colour, and only some 10 cm long. Preparation of      has always been a place of fruitful meetings between differ-
                   accompanied with bevanda – wine diluted with water so as to              ing is always a slow process, its rotation being slow and steady.         this much revered plant is simplicity itself: immersed in boiling    ent cultural patterns. It has to be underlined, however, that
                   be able to continue one’s labours to the end of the working              It takes an experienced cook to salt an animal for the spit, while        water and allowed to cook for a brief spell, carefully drained and   this new generation of Croatian chefs is facing a task greater
                   day. Inland, white table wines with a higher content of acidity          during roasting it is basted only with oil, or melted pork fat, and       sprinkled with olive oil. It is often served with boiled potatoes,   than any of its predecessors: their aim to demonstrate to the
                   are diluted with mineral water and known as gemišt, and if               sometimes with stock, wine or beer.                                       and sometimes they are cooked together, particularly when            world that one of the greatest national assets of Croatia is
                   soda water is added then it is called a špricer.                                                                                                   chard is no longer quite so young and tender. Thus prepared, it      her gastronomy.
                                                                                            PEKa            (baKinG liD)                                              is most commonly eaten with fish. New generations of Croatian
                   roštilj anD GraDElE                                                      The majority of gourmands regard food prepared under a peka               gastronomes are using chard in new, more imaginative ways,           c r oat i a n m a r K E t s
                   (Grill roastinG)                                                         as the ultimate in grilled dishes. This simple accessory – a              often inspired by old and almost forgotten recipes. Savoury          Every town of any size in Croatia has at least one market-
                   There is practically no good food which Croats would not prepare         simple domed lid – can be made of metal, thinner or thicker,              strudels and pies prepared with Swiss chard and fresh cheese;        place to which the rural homesteads from the surrounding
                   on a grill (roštilj) in the continental part of the country, or rather   often of cast iron, but true connoisseurs are particularly appre-         sauces for pasta made from boiled chard and basil; minced meat       areas bring their fresh produce. As recently as the end of last
                   on a gradele - its counterpart along the coast. And preparation is                                                                                 rolled into large leaves of chard and cooked gently in an oven;      century it seemed that cheap food of dubious quality, arriving
                   equally varied everywhere. All the better parts of meat are grilled,                                                                               larger fish stuffed with chard and herbs...                          from the world markets, would spell curtains for the small
                   the meat coming from practically all kinds of animal: poultry, pig,                                                                                                                                                     producers of quality products. Instead, it has become apparent
                   yearling beef, beef, lamb, kid, game small and large, snails, frogs,                                                                               FramEworK: nEw                                                       that the number of people willing to pay more for fresh local
                   fish, crabs, shellfish, molluscs, and even vegetables and cheese.                                                                                  G E n E r at i o n s o F                                             products is steadily growing. Alongside enduring treasures, like
                   Bread itself is improved on the grill to keep hunger at bay until                                                                                  c r oat i a n c h E F s                                              fresh cottage cheese and cream, free-range eggs, or grincajg
                   the main attractions are ready. Traditionally, the grill is tended by                                                                              Today, however, there is in Croatia a veritable pleiad of new        (from the German Grünzeug) - bunches of root vegetables
                   men who like to boast of their skills in this department, every-                                                                                   culinary stars from the younger and middle generations. Their        and greens for traditionally prepared soup, ever increasing
                   one having some special nuance or personal method which                                                                                            number is directly related to the very dynamic national gastro-      numbers of customers are seeking indigenous types of fruit
                   sometimes goes into meticulous detail, like the selection of the                                                                                   nomic stage which permits them a wide scope of research              and vegetables, wild edible plants, forest mushrooms and many
                   right kind of wood and, of course, the heat of the live coals.                                                                                     and experimentation. It also prompts them to reassess the            other foodstuffs, the high quality of which can be ensured only
                   Highly sought after is dry grape vine, while some grill masters                                                                                    culinary heritage of these parts, to seek new ways of revital-       by small breeders and grower-gatherers. One of the permanent
                                                                                                                                                                      izing traditions and to test methods of utilizing top quality        tasks of the nationwide care for our gastronomy is the need to
                        For many FooDs, bEinG PrEParED unDEr a PEKa is                                                                                                local ingredients in the contemporary gastronomic trends             preserve such markets, to safeguard small grower-gatherers and
                              thE PinnaclE oF Gastronomic ExcEllEncE.                                                                                                 prevailing in the world. In other words, what we have here           breeders, as well as the country’s traditional dishes.

                   52    croatian Gastronomy                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       croatian Gastronomy   53
                                                                                                                                                                                                     impressum                                TeXT: RENE BAKALOVIć                ROMEO IBRIŠEVIć, MILAN

general information
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  BABIć, DAMIL KALOGjERA,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              TranslaTed by: VoLGa                JasminKa JUG, miLJEnKo
                                                                                                                                                                                                     Publisher: croatian natio-               VUKELJa-DaWE                        KLEPAC, STIPE SuRAć, DAG
                                                                                                                                                                                                     naL toUrist BoarD                                                            ORŠIć, MARKO ERCEGOVIć,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               language ediTing: antHony          ZaGrEB toUrist BoarD
                                                                                                                                                                                                     For The Publisher:                        J. DaWE                            arcHiVE
                                                                                                                                                                                                     NIKO BuLIć, M.Sc.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               design: mEDia KoncEPt              PrinTed by: rotooFFsEt -
                                                                                                                                            *the publisher cannot guarantee the complete
                                                                                                                                            accuracy of the information contained herein, nor be
                                                                                                                                                                                                     ediTors: SLAVIjA jAČAN, OB-                                                  TISKARA MEIć
                                                                                                                                            held responsible for any errors as may be contained in   RATOV, RENE BAKALOVIć, MIRjA-            PhoTograPhy: iVo PErVan,
                                                                                                                                            future amendments or changes to such information.        NA BRABEC, VIVIANA VuKELIć               DAMIR FABIjANIć, SAŠA PjANIć,       ZaGrEB, 2006

                                             six months and no more than one year
                                             prior to undertaking the journey, and
                                             in the case of subsequent vaccinations
                                             (boosters) the period between vaccina-
                                             tion and the journey undertaken shall
                                                                                             22 June - anti-Fascist resistance Day
                                                                                             25 June - statehood Day
                                                                                             5 augusT - Victory Day and national
                                                                                             thanksgiving Day
                                                                                             15 augusT - assumption Day
                                                                                                                                            48000 Koprivnica
                                                                                                                                            tel.: +385 48 624 408
                                                                                                                                            Fax: +385 48 624 407
                                                                                                                                                                                                     tourist offices
                                                                                                                                            Krapina-Zagorje, Zagrebačka 6,
                                             not be greater than one year.                   8 ocTober - independence Day                   49217 Krapinske toplice;
                                             no import into, or temporary residence          1 november - all saints' Day                   Tel./Fax: +385 49 233 653,                               HRVATSKA TURISTIČKA ZAJEDNICA                    croaTian naTional TourisT oFFice
                                             in, the republic of croatia shall be            25/26 december - christmas                     E-mail:;             Iblerov trg 10/IV, p.p. 251; 10000 ZAGREB,       new york 10118, 350 Fifth avenue,
                                             permitted in the case of possibly               Holidays                                       Lika-Senj, Bilajska 3, 53000 Gospić; Tel.:              HrVatsKa; tel: +385 1 46 99 333;                 suite 4003, U.s.a.
                                             dangerous dogs of the terrier breed,                                                           +385 053 574 687; Fax: +385 53 574 687;                  Fax: +385 1 45 57 827                            tel: +1 212 279 8672
                                             of the bull terrier type, which have not        imPorTanT TelePhone numbers                                                                   ; E-mail:              Fax: +1 212 279 8683
                                             been entered in the register of the             international country code for                Međimurje, Ruđer Boškovića 3,
                                             international Kennel club (Fci) (pit bull         croatia: +385                                                                                         KRoATISCHE ZENTRAlE füR ToURISmUS
                                                                                                                                            40000 Čakovec                                            1010 Wien, am Hof 13, Österreich                 NARoDowy ośRoDEK INfoRmACJI
                                             terriers) or their cross-breeds.                Police: 92                                    Tel./Fax: +385 40 390 191                                tel: +43 1 585 38 84                             TURySTyCZNEJ, REpUblIKI CHoRwACJI
                                             information: customs administration,            Fire Brigade: 93                              E-mail:;                          Fax: +43 1 585 38 84 20                          iPc Business center, ul. Koszykowa 54
                                             republic of croatia                             ambulance: 94                                 osijek-Baranja, Šetalište Franje Šepera                 E-mail:                       00-675 Warszawa, Poland
                                             tel: 01 6102 333;                roadside vehicle assistance:                  1d/2, 31000 Osijek                                                                                        tel: +48 22 828 51 93
                                                                                               987; (when calling                tel.: +385 31 214 852                                    KRoATISCHE ZENTRAlE füR ToURISmUS                Fax: +48 22 828 51 90
                                                                                                                                            Fax: +385 31 214 853;
                                             currency                                          from abroad or by mobile phone,                                                                       60311 Frankfurt, Kaiserstrasse 23, Deutschland   E-mail:
                                                                                                                                            E-mail:                               tel: +49 69 23 85 350
                                             the official currency in croatia is the          call +385 1 987)                   
                                             Kuna (1 Kuna = 100 lipa).                       national search and rescue                                                                             Fax: +49 69 23 85 35 20                          KroaTisKa TurisTbyrån
                                                                                                                                            Požega-Slavonia, Županijska 7, 34000                    E-mail:                     11135 stockholm, Kungsgatan 24,
                                             Foreign currency may be exchanged                centre: 9155.                                Požega; Tel.: +385 34 272 505 Fax: +385                                                                   sverige
                                             in banks, exchange offices, post offices,       a single countrywide number for all           34 271 465,                                              KRoATISCHE ZENTRAlE füR ToURISmUS                tel: +46 853 482 080
Travel documenTs                             tourist agencies and hotels.                      emergency situations: 112                    E-mail:;                   80469 münchen, rumfordstrasse 7, Deutschland     Fax: +46 820 24 60
Passport or some other identity                                                             Weather forecast and road                     Primorje-Gorje, n. tesle 2, 51410 opatija;              tel: +49 89 22 33 44                             E-mail:
                                             PosT and TelecommunicaTions                       conditions: 060 520 520                      tel.: +385 51 272 988, 51 272 665; Fax:
document recognised through inter-                                                                                                                                                                   Fax: +49 89 22 33 77
                                                                                                                                            +385 51 272 909
national agreement which proves the          Post offices are open from 7 a.m. to           croatian automobile club (HaK):                                                                        E-mail:           KroaTisch naTionaal bureau
                                                                                                                                            E-mail:                                                                                voor Toerisme
identity and citizenship of the bearer.      7 p.m. on weekdays, in smaller centres            01 46 40 800,,          
                                             from 7 a.m. until 2 p.m.; some offices                                                                                             ENTE NAZIoNAlE CRoATo pER Il TURISmo             1081 GG amsterdam, nijenburg 2F,
information: diplomatic missions of                                                                                                         Sisak-Moslavina, S. i A. Radića 28/II,
                                             work a split shift. in most towns and           information - local and intercity                                                                      20122 Milano, Piazzetta Pattari 1/3, Italia      netherlands
the republic of croatia abroad or the                                                                                                       44000 sisak; tel.: +385 44 540 163                       tel: +39 02 86 45 44 97                          tel: +31 20 661 64 22
ministry of Foreign affairs and European     tourist centres, on-duty post offices are         numbers: 988                                 Fax: +385 44 540 164;                                    Fax: +39 02 86 45 45 74                          Fax: +31 20 661 64 27
integrations of the republic of croatia.     open on saturdays and sundays.                  information - international                   E-mail:                             E-mail:                E-mail:
tel: 00385 1 4569 964; e-mail:               Phone cards are used in all public               numbers: 902                                 Split-Dalmatia, Prilaz braće Kaliterna 10/I,
                                             telephones and may be purchased from            General information: 981                      21001 Split; Tel./Fax: +385 1 490 032, 21;                                                                                                                                                                         ENTE NAZIoNAlE CRoATo pER Il TURISmo             oFFice naTional croaTe du Tourisme
                                                                                                                                            490 033, 21 490 036;
                                             post offices and from newspaper and                                                                                                                     00186 roma, Via Dell’oca 48, italia              1000 Bruxelles,
                                                                                                                                            E-mail:                                 tel: +39 06 32 11 0396                           Vieille Halle aux Bles 38,
cusToms                                      tobacco kiosks. international calls may be      croatian anGELs - a single telephone 
                                             made directly from all public telephones.       number throughout croatia from which                                                                    Fax: +39 06 32 11 1462                           Belgium
customs regulations of the republic of                                                                                                      Šibenik-Knin, Fra N. Ružića bb,
                                                                                             tourist information can be obtained:                                                                    E-mail:          tel: +32 255 018 88
croatia are harmonised with the stand-                                                                                                      22000 Šibenik; tel.: +385 22 219 072                                                                      Fax: +32 251 381 60
ards of E.U. member states.                  medical services                                062 999 999                                    Fax: +385 22 212 346;                                    CHoRVATSKé TURISTICKé SDRUžENí                   E-mail:
Foreign currency may be freely taken        there are hospitals and clinics in all         From outside croatia:                          E-mail:                               110 00 Praha 1, Krakovská 25
in and out of the country; local currency    larger towns and cities; in the smaller         +385 62 999 999. this service is                         Česká republika                                  ХорвAтCKoE туристическое
                                             centres there are dispensaries and              available in croatian, English, German         Varaždin, Kratka 1, 42000 Varaždin;
up to an amount of 15,000.oo Kuna.                                                                                                                                                                   tel: +420 2 2221 1812                            соовщество
                                                                                                                                            Tel./fax: +385 42 301 036
more valuable professional and              pharmacies.                                     and italian.                                                                                            Fax: +420 2 2221 0793                            Krasnopresnenskaya nab. 12, 123610
                                                                                                                                            E-mail:                      E-mail:;              moscow, 1502, russia
technical equipment must be declared         Foreign visitors are not obliged to pay                                              
                                             for medical services if a convention            counTy TourisT oFFices                                                                                                                                   tel: +7 095 258 15 07
at the border.                                                                                                                              Virovitica-Podravina,
                                             on health services has been signed              Bjelovar-Bilogora, trg Eugena                                                                          CHoRVáTSKE TURISTICKé ZDRUžENIE                  Fax; +7 095 258 15 08
When leaving the country, foreign                                                                                                          trg kralja tomislava 1, 33000 Virovitica;                821 09 Bratislava, Trenčianska 5 , Slovakia      E-mail:
citizens are entitled to tax refund for      between croatia and visitors' country           Kvaternika 4, 43 000 Bjelovar                  tel.: +385 33 726 069
                                                                                             tel.: +385 43 243 944                                                                                   tel: +421 2 55 562 054
purchased goods exceeding 500.00             of origin. Expenses incurred as a result                                                       Fax: +385 33 721 241                                     Fax: +421 2 55 422 619                           HRVAšKA TURISTIČNA SKUpNoST
                                             of health services rendered to persons          Fax: +385 43 241 229                           E-mail:
kuna (for each single item) on presenta-                                                                                                                                                             E-mail:                        1000 Ljubljana, Gosposvetska 2,
                                             coming from countries with which no             E-mail:;            Vukovar-srijem
tion of a certified "tax cheque" form.                                                       Brod-Posavina, Petra Krešimira iV br. 1,
                                                                                                                                            Glagoljaška 27, 32100 Vinkovci
Pets (dogs, cats and animals of the         such convention has been signed are                                                                                                                     HoRVáT IDEgENfoRgAlmI KöZöSSég                   tel: +386 1 23 07 400
                                                                                             35000 slavonski Brod                           Tel./Fax: +385 32 344 034,                               1053 Budapest, magyar u. 36, magyarország        Fax: +386 1 230 74 04
marten family) which are either travel-      charged directly to the user, as per            tel.: +385 35 408 393; Fax: +385 35 408 392    E-mail:
                                             price list. For patients in a life-threaten-                                                                                                            Tel./Fax: +36 1 266 65 05, +36 1 266 65 33       E-mail:
ling through the republic of croatia                                                         E-mail:
                                             ing situation, emergency air transport                                                                                                                  E-mail:
in the company of their owners, or                                                           Dubrovnik-neretva                             Zadar, Sv. Leopolda B. Mandića 1,                                                                        KRoATISCHE ZENTRAlE füR ToURISmUS
which are staying in the country on a        (helicopter) and sea transport is avail-        Cvijete Zuzorić 1/I, 20000 Dubrovnik           23000 Zadar; tel.: +385 23 315 107                       oFFice naTional croaTe de Tourisme               Badenerstr. 332
temporary basis, must, prior to entering     able (speedboat).                               tel.: +385 20 324 999; Fax: +385 20 324 224    Fax: +385 23 315 316                                     75116 Paris, 48, avenue Victor Hugo, France      8004 Zürich, switzerland
the country, be fitted with a microchip      Power supply: 220V, 50 Hz                       E-mail:                 E-mail:;              tel: +33 1 45 00 99 55                           tel: +41 43 321 8211
or be clearly and legibly marked with        tap water is potable in all parts of croatia.                          Zagreb County, Preradovićeva 42, 10000                  Fax: +33 1 45 00 99 56                           Fax: +41 43 321 8213
                                                                                             Istria, Pionirska 1, 52440 Poreč;             Zagreb; tel: +385 1 4873 665                             E-mail:                 E-mail:
a number prior to being entered in
                                                                                             tel.: +385 52 452 797; Fax: +385 52 452 796    Fax: +385 1 4873 670
the international certificate issued in      Public holidays
                                                                                             E-mail:;            E-mail:,                       croaTian naTional TourisT oFFice                 oFicina de Turismo de croacia
accordance with legislation valid in the     1 January - new year's Day                                                                     Zagreb city, Kaptol 5, 10000 Zagreb;
                                                                                             Karlovac, a. Vraniczanya 6, 47000 Karlovac                                                             London W6 9Er, 2 Lanchesters, 162-164            Calle Claudio Coello 22, esc.B,1˚C
republic of croatia.                         6 January - Epiphany                                                                           tel.: +385 1 4898 555
                                                                                             tel.: +385 47 615 320                                                                                   Fulham Palace road, United Kingdom;              28001 madrid
after the first vaccination against rabies   Easter sunday & Easter monday                   Fax: +385 47 601 415,                          Fax: +385 1 4814 340                                     tel: +44 208 563 79 79                           tel. 003491 781 5514
carried out at the age of three months,      1 may - Labour Day                              E-mail:;              E-mail:                       Fax: +44 208 563 26 16                           Fax: 003491 431 8443
animals must be vaccinated at least          corpus christi                                  Koprivnica-Križevci, Antuna Nemčića 5,                                E-mail:                E-mail:

54   croatian Gastronomy                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               croatian Gastronomy    55

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