Believe it or not, food is the ultimate source of happiness. No matter where you are, every place holds a unique taste. Lithuania is one of those places in northeastern Europe with the taste your taste buds would crave. Considered the cheapest among the three Baltic states of northeastern Europe, Lithuania is popular for its lush green landscapes, sandy beaches, amber, and exquisite hot air balloon experiences.
Lithuanian food acts as a cherry on the cake. From the drooling taste of Cepelinai and fried bread to the delicious and unique Sakotis, the Republic of Lithuania has it all for your culinary desires. So, if you find yourself here, do experience its gastronomy art.
Though the country is blessed with a plethora of food items, one thing that you will find a bit strange here is the use of potatoes. Almost every other dish has potato in it. Despite this fact, the Lithuanian cuisine is surefire to fill your heart with joy and satisfaction.
Lithuania will offer you a unique one if you are fond of dumplings. Cepelinai is Lithuania's national food and the most wanted dish for everyone who arrives there.
Cepelinai is nothing but a potato dumpling filled with minced meat. The supersoft dumpling gets its name from the Zeppelin airship. Strangely, the shape and size is also similar to the ship. You can try it with Lithuanian beer and sour cream on top to get the best taste. For vegetarians, the minced meat can be replaced with cheese or mushrooms.
For those who love summer, there is a special dish that will amplify your summer experience. Šaltibarščiai, unlike its name, is a simple dish that will refresh your body from top to bottom in moments. The soupy dish has a light pink colour that it gets from the beetroot. Besides beetroot, there are green onions, dill, kefir, hard-boiled eggs, and cucumber. All these things are chopped and mixed to make the soup.
It is usually served with boiled potatoes on the side that can be dipped in the soup and consumed. If you like, you can also add sour cream on the side.
If you prefer desserts more than the main course and snacks, then the Grybukai is the first dish to try in Lithuania. Most of you would think it is made up of mushrooms, but no, it is shaped like mushrooms. Grybukai are white and black morsels filled with the flavours of cardamom, nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves.
So, when you take a bite of it, you will feel the sweet flavours of these items mingling in your mouth. Thus making it an essential part of the traditional Lithuanian cuisine.
Just like I said in the beginning, potato is used in every other dish in Lithuania. Kugelis is one of those dishes that is made from potatoes. It is a potato pudding, pie, or Lasagna with other ingredients, including bacon and green onions. Onions, bacon, and potatoes are mixed together and bound with beaten eggs and milk. Further, they are baked to create this dreamy and scrumptious dish.
The baked pie is ideal to eat with lingonberry jam, bacon, or sour cream. The recipe for this dish may vary with each place, but one thing is sure: it will be tasty in every variant.
If you love to hang out in bars with your friends, try this dish with them. Mostly consumed as a bar snack, the Kepta Duona is a fried bread that perfectly goes with Lithuanian beer. The dish is made from dark rye bread cut into longer sticks and fried in oil. Further, these sticks are seasoned with garlic and salt to taste exotic.
To get the best taste out of this dish, have it with creamy cheese sauce along with your beer.
From the outside, the look of this dish will surely make you crave it. The stunning golden colour puff pastry has ground pork filling in it. However, if you are a vegetarian, you can also find variants where the inside of the pastry has fruits, cabbage, and even cheese. The choices do not stop here. Some even integrate vegetables, chicken, spinach, and something sweet like berry jam or apple and plum.
Unlike the sweet variants, the other ones are consumed along with soup on the side.
If you are fond of sweet dishes consisting of cheese, Varškėčiai is the Lithuania traditional food to pick from. These are delicious fried cakes or pancakes made from creamy Lithuanian cheese curds. Having a slight golden colour along with a little touch of brown in the middle, the supersoft cakes are best served with forest berries, honey and cream.
So, if you crave a bit of sweetness in your breakfast, do check out these yummy fried cakes. Homemade cakes are preferred more.
Just like turkey is used for Thanksgiving, Šakotis is the indicator of festivals like Christmas, Easter, or any wedding. This vertically elongated cake is cooked in a spit-like cooker, which is also the reason it has spikes on its exterior. The spikes are formed due to the dripping batter, which is made by mixing cheese, cream butter, and flour.
The unique thing about the cake is that it is hollow from within, just like a cylinder, and it is a delight to watch it being cooked.