Paprika


At the weekly market in the villages and towns one can see the largest variety of paprika in place. Bright red, green, and yellow bells; large tomato-shaped peppers in a range of colors from pale yellow and pale green to darkest red; a profusion of green and scarlet paprika, shorter version of the same-shaped paprika, medium green and deep red; yellow Hungarian-type wax paprika very similar to cayennes; shorter, slightly thicker ones like Italian pepperoncini; and small, thin, pointed, very hot dark green and dark red paprika like the kind called "chillies".

Capsium paprika - fresh or dried, raw or cooked, pickled or milled into paprika-play a large part in Yugoslav cuisine. Bell peppers and tomato paprika are cooked with stuffing of rice , meat or cheese, seasoned with spices and fresh herbs, and garnished with a dollop of yogurt or sour cream.

Long pale green or ripe red paprika are roasted and peeled (with their stems and seeds left intact), and served whole, seasoned with oil, vinegar, and chopped garlic. Paprika of various sorts are used in salads and as garnishes for a wide assortment of dishes. The hottest ones, along with chopped onions, are often an accompaniment to the traditional grilled meat dishes found throughout the land: razznjichi, skewered cubes of meat (usually pork); chevapchichi, cylindrical patties of ground meat, each about 1.5 cm wide and 5 cm long; and pljeskavice, large, flat, ground meat patties similar in shape to American hamburgers, but with more distinct, spicy taste. Hot and spicy food are common in Yugoslavia.

Muslim regions still favor lamb as their principal meat and mutton fat as a cooking medium, whereas Eastern Orthodox areas prefer pork, butter, and lard. And the cuisine of the Montenegro's coast has been influenced by its history of Greek, Roman, and its Mediterranean climate, and its proximity to the sea.


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