Urnebes can be found in every Serbian fast food stand. Most common thing you would eat there is a burger, but we do burgers here a bit differently. Take a look on 1st and 4th photo on this article and you’ll see. Burger is called pljeskavica and a bun is not a typical bun, but a small round loaf of bread called lepinja. When you order your pljeskavica you are asked for the spreads and seasonings of your choice (and most of the time there are a lot of choices). Urnebes is one of the smelly ones that we all crave all the time but avoid because of lots of garlic. For me that changed when I became a teenager and started going out. It would usually be summer time and very late at night, my friends and I are coming from the club hungry as wolves. Nobody cared at that point about the garlic and a memory of us devouring burgers with this spread is just warm and summery.
And the name would mean the chaotic spread. I’ve asked around a few of my good English-speaking friends just to be sure and we all agreed that although the word is not possible to translate perfectly, this translation works OK I don’t know why it’s called like that. Asked some of my friends and older members of family, but nobody knows. My guess is because of the spiciness, but It’s only a guess.
Never mind that. If you’re into spicy food, you’ll love it! No recipe for lepinja and pljeskavica this time, only urnebes and some pork skewers
Urnebes (The Chaotic Spread)
450 g feta cheese
5 tablespoons sour cream (with 20% milk fat)
3 large cloves garlic
1,5 teaspoons sweet paprika
a couple of teaspoons chilly flakes (adjust to taste)
Squash feta with your fork into a puree. Stir in sour cream so that it combines well with feta. Add pressed garlic and paprika and mix it well with the cheese. Add as much chilly flakes as you like.
This spread should be very spicy, but still, adjust everything to taste. Begin with 1 clove garlic and a little chilly flakes and add more until you’re satisfied. In Serbia, we often add hot instead sweet paprika. Make sure you leave the spread in the refrigerator overnight before you eat it. Flavors will combine and develop during that time.
Rosemary Pork Skewers
500 g pork, cubed
a couple of rosemary stalks
Prepare the skewers first. Strip all the rosemary leaves except for a few centimeters at the top of each stalk. Sharpen the other end of each stalk with a sharp knife (be very careful while you do it!). Use rosemary stalks to spear the meat cubes.
Rub the skewers with Vegeta and pour some oil over. Let it marinate overnight in the fridge.
Heat some oil in a pan or just heat a non stick grill pan and fry the skewers until they’re done. If you fry them on oil, fry them on a high heat first, only to catch the color and then reduce the heat and continue to cook. This will make a nice gravy that you can soak your bread into later.
Serve with freshly baked white bread and urnebes.
You can also grill the skewers on an outdoor grill. Even better.
Vegeta seasoning is an all purpose seasoning made with salt and dried vegetables. It is available to purchase without the MSG added. If you can’t find it just use salt and pepper instead.
In Serbia we use local cheese usually bought fresh from the farmers market. This cheese doesn’t need sour cream and actually, the cheese is here in the recipe only to make the texture of the squashed feta right and to mild it’s flavor. Combining feta and sour cream gives the spread the taste as accurate as you can get without the right cheese.
This recipe was published in Countlan magazine, issue 4. A BIG thanks to Sarah for having me Spread is also in November 2013 issue of Mezze magazine.