Slaninijada is a traditional World Bacon Festival that takes place in a village of Kačarevo in Serbia. It all begun in a local kafana in 1988 when a group of people started a quarrel about pig slaughter, drying and preparing a good bacon. Everyone claimed that he was the one that makes the best, the juiciest, the fattest bacon. Who knows where this would lead if somebody didn’t suggest organizing a competition with tasting. In only two weeks, the first Slaninijada took palce. Ever since, it is organized every next to last weekend in February.
A typical artisan candy seller’s stand. These are present on any village fair in Serbia. All the candies are handmade.
Left to right: white halva (although yellow), regular chocolate halva, some strange looking bonbons and the slippers, made out of the bread dough. These slippers are primarily made for decoration, and often contain plaster. It is still possible to find the edible ones throughout Serbia, just be sure you ask the seller if they’re edible
Left to right: Licitar hearts, they are made out of exact dough as the slippers above. They originate from the East Alps, then the artisans brought them to Croatia, and from there, they came to Serbia. They often have a little mirror stuck in the middle of them. I remember my grandmother telling me that boys used to buy those hearts for their girls as a sign of their affection. Next, tiny umbrella lollipops, when I was little they could be bought in almost every store, I just loved them! The last photo is of chocolate cream stuffed ice cream cones sealed with more chocolate. My father remembers those when he was a child in the post WW2 Belgrade. They were called Winter ice cream and were sold in every pastry shop.
These were an absolute hit of the day to me The seller placed a sign saying “An old Transylvanian Cookie”. He was very kind and showed me the whole process of making them. I did some research on them and found they are called Kürtőskalács, a Chimney cake. M says he ate it at Budapest, and that is a common Hungarian street food. Oh, and they are delicious!
Švargla – a kind of sausage made out of pork insides. There is another similar product: kavurma – made out of fried pork or sheep insides, then they are preserved with melted pork fat. It does look non-yummy, but trust me on this, if you ever get a chance on trying it – do it, you won’t regret it! There is a good recipe on Gaga’s blog, give it a try!
Bottom left: Krvavica – a genuine horror food, but, I love it very much. When they cut pig’s throat, they collect the blood in a pot, than it is cooked with some insides (not sure exactly what, I had never had a chance to witness it) and then it is all packed inside the stomach or intestines, which is why you need to know if the people who prepare it washed it thoroughly ;) It is well seasoned with aleva paprika and lots of garlic, and if the making process doesn’t bother you, extremely tasty. Next to it: something I could not identify, and it was a very busy stand so I didn’t ask; Right: one more kind of Švargla.
Left: Sausages seasoned with mustard seeds; Right: Sudžuk – Bosnian sausage
Fast food stands – Pljeskavica is always grilled, and lepinja cut in half and grilled a little too. You could try making this at home but somehow I’ve never tasted anything better then on some village fair. The thing in the pots is Prebranac.
Čvarci – we witnessed making of čvarci. They are even better freshly made than the store bought ones.
Left: Rotisserie pigs and lambs. Pigs are roasted with their skin on which is considered delicacy, but the lambs are skinned. This is a must on every Serbian fair, wedding and slava. And it is traditionally made for the Christmas on the countryside. Right: Smoked pork trotters.
Some of the candies I bought. Snow White Gelee, a marshmallow-kind of candy, but seasoned very much with something I can not recognize. The red stripe is strawberry and brown Alpine milk chocolate. Right: Black bonbons. No sugar added, with extracts of over a hundred herbs. One freshens breath for a long time.
Potato sugar – even though it’s name, it’s not made of potato. It is actually made of corn, and if I understood the seller correctly, it is made in a similar way as a corn syrup.