Bulgarian Foods: 20 Most Popular Bulgaria Dishes. Bulgarian cuisine has a long and esteemed history, which has enabled it to encompass a wide range of cuisines.
In comparison to its Balkan neighbors, the country has the most experience with traditional Bulgarian cuisine, which is widely regarded as a form of Southeast European cuisine. Geography plays a significant role in the cuisine of the country.
Mish-mash, a traditional Bulgarian salad, consists of a medley of freshly chopped vegetables, eggs, and sirene cheese, a Balkan-binned cheese akin to feta.
The customary ingredients include tomatoes, onions, and peppers, although variations can incorporate eggplant, okra, carrots, scallions, and garlic.
The salad is lightly seasoned with black pepper and salt, and frequently adorned with freshly chopped parsley. Traditionally enjoyed during the spring season, mish-mash is often served warm as an appetizer or main course, accompanied by freshly baked bread. – Bulgarian Foods
2. Shopska Salad
This salad is made from a bunch of different veggies – tomatoes, cucumber, onion, scallions, peppers, and sirene, which is a type of white brine cheese.
The veggies are usually cut up and salted before being dressed with light sunflower oil or olive oil, sometimes with vinegar. The vinegar adds a sour taste to the tomatoes.
If you go to a restaurant, you’ll get the dressings separately. Then, the veggies are all covered in a layer of cheese, usually sirene. It’s usually served with rakia and is a great appetizer. – Bulgarian Foods
Snezhanka is a traditional Greek-style salad. It is characterized by its predominantly white color from the strained yogurt it contains, as well as the addition of chopped cucumber and garlic.
Toppings can be added for a more personalized experience, such as roasted peppers, chopped parsley, and more.
This salad can be served as a side dish, appetizer, or pita bread dip, and can also be included in meze platters. It is traditionally accompanied by alcoholic beverages. – Bulgarian Foods
4. Kiselo Mlyako
Yogurt is a type of food that is produced by the fermentation of milk by bacteria, referred to as yogurt cultures. These bacteria break down the sugars in the milk, resulting in the production of lactic acid which is then converted into lactic acid which acts on the milk protein, resulting in a texture and tart flavor.
The milk used for the production of yogurt is typically cow’s milk, but other milk types such as water buffalo milk. The milk used can be homogenized, pasteurized, or raw, and the results of each type of milk vary significantly. – Bulgarian Foods
Bulgaria is a country renowned for its abundance of dairy products, with feta cheese being one of the most widely consumed. However, the country also produces its version of the cheese, known as sirene.
This white cheese is made from cow, sheep, goat, or a combination of the three, and is brined to create a table cheese.
Sirene is slightly softer, more wet, and creamier than feta, yet still crumbly and slightly citrusy in flavor. This traditional cheese is commonly found in Bulgarian dishes, such as salads, bread, and pastries. – Bulgarian Foods
Banitsa is a customary pastry dish that undergoes name variations in different regions. In Budjak, North Macedonia, and Southeastern Serbia, it is referred to as gibanica, while Bulgarians in Ukraine call it milina.
The preparation involves layering a combination of beaten eggs, natural yogurt, and chunks of white-brined cheese between filo pastry, which is then baked in an oven.
As per tradition in Bulgaria, on specific occasions, particularly on New Year’s Eve, fortunate charms are placed inside the pastry. These charms can be in the form of coins or small symbolic objects, such as a fragment of a dogwood branch with a bud, symbolizing good health and longevity.
More recently, individuals have taken to writing joyful wishes on small pieces of paper and wrapping them in tin foil. These wishes may encompass happiness, good health, or success throughout the upcoming year, akin to the concept of fortune cookies. – Bulgarian Foods
Ljutenica, a relish or chutney commonly found in Bulgarian, Macedonian, and Serbian cuisines, can be characterized as occasionally spicy. Its composition consists of peppers, aubergines, carrots, garlic, vegetable oil, sugar, salt, and tomatoes.
This relish offers a range of options, including smooth or chunky textures, variations with chili peppers or eggplant, and the choice between hot or mild flavors. – Bulgarian Foods
Tarator is one of the most popular cold soup dishes in Bulgaria. On a hot summer’s day, you can’t go wrong with a bowl of this refreshing soup.
It’s made by mixing Bulgarian yogurt with cucumbers and walnuts, adding oil, garlic, and dill, and then adding cold water to dilute and make sure the yogurt is not lumpy.
You can add ice cubes if you like. This is a very simple Bulgarian recipe. It is best to make the soup at least half an hour before serving, so it can cool down in the refrigerator. Tarator is a very popular cold soup in Southeast Europe and the Middle East. – Bulgarian Foods
9. Bob Chorba
This classic Bulgarian dish has been around for centuries, partly because it’s so popular. It’s called “bop” because it means beans, and it’s made with lots of different ingredients like dry beans, veggies, and meats like sausages and sausages. It’s a great meal to have with a main meal, but it’s also a great option for Travellers who don’t have a lot of money. – Bulgarian Foods
10. Supa Topcheta
This popular Bulgarian dish, Supa Topcheta, is composed of three components: vegetables, ground meat, and a thickener.
Depending on the chef, additional ingredients such as rice, noodles, and potatoes may be incorporated.
To enhance the flavor and acidity of the soup, fresh lemon juice may be added before serving. There are numerous recipes available for this comforting dish, as well as many Bulgarian cooks. – Bulgarian Foods
Palachinka is a type of traditional Bulgarian pancake or crepe, consisting of a thin layer of dough rolled in butter and honey, then covered in powdered sugar and topped with strawberries. Additionally, it can be served with a variety of fillings, including fruit jam, slices of fruit, cheese, and plain powdered sugar. – Bulgarian Foods
Tikvenik is a sweet version of the traditional banitsa. It is made with a filling of pumpkin and warm cinnamon, wrapped in a soft phyllo pastry, and topped with powdered sugar.
It is usually served during the holiday season, especially on Christmas Eve, but it can also be enjoyed at any time of year. Tikvenik can also be enjoyed as a breakfast or snack. It is best served with yogurt. – Bulgarian Foods
13. Meshana Skara
Meshana skara is an ideal dish for those who are passionate about grilled meat and Bulgarian cuisine. It is a combination of meats and sides that can be enjoyed with a variety of accompaniments, such as kufte, pork steak, pork on a skewer, and kebapche.
The platter is complemented by fries, a bean salad, chopped onion, lyutenitsa, and other ingredients. This platter is ideal for sharing with friends or family and can be accompanied by a glass of beer or a shot of rakia. – Bulgarian Foods
Kebapches are a classic Bulgarian dish that’s made with minced meat and spices. It’s shaped like a hot dog and usually has pork and beef in it, but some recipes only have pork.
The main spices used are cumin, black pepper, and salt. It’s usually grilled, not fried or baked, and you can add chips or sirene cheese like feta to dip it in. It’s also known as a three-cheese meal, with sides like garnitura. The best drink to have with it is beer. – Bulgarian Foods
A kufte is a meat pattie made from ground pork meat. It can be made with ground veal meat, beef meat, or a mixture of all three. Kufte is seasoned with salt and pepper. It can also be seasoned with cumin, onion, and garlic. Savory may also be added. Some people add pepper flakes to their kufte.
You can make kufte in a variety of ways. You can bake it, fry it, or grill it to perfection. It can be served with bread, baked rice, a Shopska salad, or french fries topped with white Bulgarian cheese. – Bulgarian Foods
Lukanka is a type of sausage that’s only found in Bulgaria and is unique to it. It’s like sujuk but usually has a stronger flavor. It’s half-dried and has a flat, flattened shape with brown-red skin that’s usually covered in white fungus.
It’s usually cut into small pieces and has a grainy texture due to all the meat and fat mixed. It’s usually served cold as a starter or appetizer. Lukanka is traditionally made with pork and veal, plus some spices like black pepper and cumin.
It’s then stuffed into a long piece of cow’s intestine and left to dry for around 40-50 days in a spot with plenty of air. During the drying process, the sausage is pressed to get its flat shape. – Bulgarian Foods
Moussaka, a traditional Greek dish, is composed of eggplant or potatoes, often accompanied by ground meat. It is a widely consumed dish in the Balkan and Middle Eastern regions, with a variety of local and regional variants.
The modern Greek version of the dish was developed in the 1920s and is characterized by its top layer of a milk-based sauce, thickened with egg or flour.
In Greece, it is usually served hot and layered. Additionally, Tselementes proposed a vegan version for Orthodox fast days. There is also a vegan version of the dish in Romania, which substitutes mushrooms for meat, or a combination of onions and rice. – Bulgarian Foods
Sarmi is a dish traditionally served on Christmas Eve, consisting of a roll-up cabbage or vine leaf stuffed with minced meat and rice, seasoned with a variety of spices, and poached in a sauce of water or tomato.
It is a traditional dish that has its roots in the Middle East but has since spread to Eastern Europe due to the success of trade routes and the influx of ethnic immigrants.
Although the name of the dish may vary from country to country, the essence of the dish remains the same – a tender, succulent cabbage leaf filled with minced meat and spices. – Bulgarian Foods
Kavarma, a traditional Bulgarian dish, is characterized by its slow-cooked meats and vegetables. The pot can be cast iron, Dutch oven, or slow cooker, depending on the type of pot used.
The proteins used in the preparation of kavarma are beef, chicken, or pork, as well as a variety of fresh vegetables, from carrots and leeks to peppers and tomatoes.
Wine is added to the sauce to enhance its flavor. The result is a tender and succulent main course, ideal for dipping crusty bread in the rich sauce. – Bulgarian Foods
20. Shkembe Chorba
Shkembe Chorba soup is a traditional dish that is typically consumed the following day after a night of drinking. However, it can also be served as a bar chow that is accompanied by a cold beer or a rakia.
The tripe is cooked for an extended period to soften the meat, after which it is cut into smaller pieces and added to the soup. The broth is then seasoned with ground red peppers, flour, milk, and garlic, as well as red wine vinegar.
Additionally, other variations of this dish may involve the use of offal or intestines, which is a common practice in the regions of the Balkans, Turkey, and the Middle East. – Bulgarian Foods