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Relish & Delight Region
Macedonia is a landlocked Balkan nation of mountains, lakes and ancient towns with Ottoman and European architecture. The capital, Skopje, is known for its sprawling Old Bazaar quarter and historic buildings turned museums, including the National Gallery of Macedonia, housed in a 15th-century Turkish bath complex. The southern city Ohrid, on a lake of the same name, has a medieval townscape and hilltop castle. [Wikipedia]
Ajvar ([ǎj.ʋaːr], Serbian Cyrillic: ajвар; Bulgarian: aйвар; Macedonian: aјвар) is a type of relish, made principally from red bell peppers. It may also contain garlic, eggplantand chili peppers. Ajvar originates in Serbian cuisine and was therefore long known as "Serbian salad" or "Serbian vegetable caviar". It became a popular side dish throughout Yugoslavia after World War II and is nowadays popular in the Balkans.
Homemade ajvar is made of roasted peppers. Depending on the capsaicin content in bell peppers and the amount of added chili peppers, it can be sweet (traditional), piquant (the most common), or very hot. Ajvar can be consumed as a bread spread or a side dish. [Wikipedia]
Not long ago, somewhere in the southern Balkans, in the old Skopje restaurant DUKAT, there were three friends sitting in the restaurant, Petar, Kalin and Boban. The three big gourmands were having a true Macedonian business meeting, like true Macedonian managers in front of a rich dining table on which there was absolutely everything that a hungry eye could wish for.
Our friends had a feast with different types of meat, appetizers, cheese, salads, rakija and wine, not aware that precisely these most delicious meals will be the reason for their loud discussion.
Mesmerized by the different types of ajvar, lutenica, pindzur, dried and chopped peppers and all other known types of peppers, the three of them were dipping in the platter with thirst, when all of a sudden, completely unexpected, Petar’s statement disturbed the calm and homely atmosphere in the restaurant: "The ajvar is ingenious, I swear. Only my mother’s is better then this one!"
Whether he said it intentionally or was provoked by a hot pepper, we do not know, but the die was cast! The next one to speak up was Boban who with a full mouth claimed that his mother added a special spice in the ajvar and that hers was the most delicious ajvar in the world. Not to be left out, Kalin convinced his friends that the secret to an ajvar’s success is not in the spice but in the love that his mother gave while preparing the ajvar. [Mamas Foods Story]
Ajvar Mild/Hot/Fire Hot
Malizzano Mild/Hot/Fire Hot
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