The Best of Serbian Cuisine

Burek, a phyllo dough pastry layered with soft white farmer’s cheese and oil, is a “greasy piece of morning happiness,” according to susancinsf. In Serbia, it’s purchased in bakeries and eaten with high-quality yogurt “to cut through the grease,” she says. Some versions are stuffed with meat and nettles or spinach. A more heavily stuffed homemade version of burek, with cream added to the cheese, is called gibanica. susaninsf’s favorite thing is the heavenly Serbian dish of stuffed pickled cabbage, called sarma.

Serbian cuisine also features many kinds of sir, or cheese, continues susancinsf, which are “young, tangy, creamy, mild, salty, white pieces of heaven … Think of the whole spectrum of flavors and consistencies you can imagine from ricotta to feta.” Other dishes include cevapi (which Ruth Lafler describes as finger-size pieces of ground meat grilled like sausages); potato dumplings stuffed with plums and rolled in fried breadcrumbs with sugar; and kiselo ovcije mleko, a sour sheep’s milk drink that susancinsf describes as slightly bitter, slightly tangy, and fatty. “There is nothing more refreshing on summer days,” she reckons.

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