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A regular lunch in Bosnia and Herzegovina is frequently composed of ‘well done’ meat.

What interests me most about the culture of Bosnia and Herzegovina is their food. Meat and cabbage-based dishes are most widely crafted in a Bosnian kitchen. Bosanski Ionacis is a cabbage and meat stew. Cevapciciare lamb sausages are usually eaten with flat bread called somun. Pastries, both sweet and savory are common; burekandpida (layered cheese or meat pies), zeljanica(spinach pie), and sirnica(cheese pie) are served as main dishes. Baklava, a Turkish pastry made of phyllo dough layered with nuts and honey, is a popular dessert, as is an apple cake called tufahije. Kefir, a thin yogurt drink, is popular, as are Turkish coffee and a kind of tea called salep.

Grilled trout, potatoes and greens  Image: hellimli on Flickr

Homemade brandy, called rakija, is a popular alcoholic drink in Bosnia and Herzegovina. When it comes to food customs at ceremonial occasions, Bosnian Muslims celebrate the end of Ramadan (a month of fasting from sunrise to sunset) with a large family meal comprising Turkish-style sweets and pastries.

Both Catholics and Eastern Orthodox believers celebrate Easter with special breads and elaborately decorated eggs. From my findings, eating in Bosnia and Herzegovina is a treat. Being a big eater is something you will never have to be ashamed of; instead you will begin to take pride in it.

Goulash is a rich, meaty stew Image: Letícia F. Terra on Flickr

If you eat everything you are served when visiting someone’s home, the host will automatically serve you more food, believing you are still hungry. To avoid this, leave a bite or two on your plate, because if you say “Nisam gladna!” (I’m not hungry) they simply won’t believe it.

Every social event contains food, whether it is a traditional dish, such as burekcevapimusaka, or pita, or just desserts. Coffee and food will be served to you, regardless of whether you are thirsty or hungry. The rich texture of the local food really echoes the sentiments of true Bosnian and Herzegovinan hospitality.


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