European Eating Adventure: Albania

European Eating Adventure: Albania

This year Sam and I have the goal of cooking and eating a meal from every country in Europe. There are 51 countries in Europe, which would match up for us to cook one country’s meal a week. While we would love to get in all 51 in 2018, I know life will interfere and it will probably take us more than a year. That is okay though!

The first country up for our eating adventure is Albania, which is the first country alphabetically. I researched traditional foods, dishes, and meals and came up with a menu that I could find ingredients for and could easily cook.

I came up with a menu of Albanian lentil soup, beetroot pie, cabbage salad, and rice cake for dessert. I found Albanian recipes on Pinterest and inspiration from the blog Global Table Adventure.

Lentil soup, beetroot pie, and cabbage salad

We listened to Albanian folk music while we enjoyed our meal, and we looked up a map of Albania and read interesting facts.

  1. Every evening there is an official evening walk called a “xhiro”
  2. Albanians shake their heads to agree, but nod to disagree
  3. The majority of Albanians are Muslim (70%); the second largest religion is Christianity (17%)
  4. Albanians use scarecrows and teddy bears as talismans to ward off envy from neighbors
  5. The traditional dress of Albania is made from wool, cotton, and silk with embroidered patterns and symbols
  6. Lunch is the main meal of the day in Albania and businesses shut down at noon for a few hours to enjoy it
  7. Albanians eat dinner around 8:00 PM
  8. Men and women traditionally eat at separate tables
  9. Heart disease and obesity are rare due to low consumption of meat and high consumption of vegetables
  10. Mother Theresa is the only Albanian to win the Nobel Prize

(Facts from here and here)

Rice “cake” and coffee

4 Replies to “European Eating Adventure: Albania”

  1. This is a great idea! At the end of your culinary adventure, I’d like to know which meals you liked best, which had similar meals to us, which were most different. Happy dining!

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