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The Albanian cuisine of Kosovo (Albanian: Kuzhina kosovare) is a representative of the cuisine of the Balkans and consists of traditional dishes by ethnic groups native to Kosovo.[a] Due to ethnic connections with Albania, it has been significantly influenced by Albanian cuisine and has adopted elements of other Balkan countries.
Bread, dairy, meat, fruits and vegetables are important staples in Kosovan cuisine. With diversity of recipes, the Kosovan daily cuisine adjusts well to the country's occasional hot summers and the frequent long winters. As a result of its continental climate, fresh vegetables are consumed in summer while pickles throughout autumn and winter.
Breakfast in Kosovo is usually light, consisting primarily of a croissant with coffee, sandwiches, scrambled eggs, omelettes, petulla or toast with salami, processed cheese, lettuce and tea. Cereals with milk, waffles, pretzels and homemade pancakes with honey or marmalade are also frequently consumed especially by children.
Common dishes include pies, flija, stuffed peppers, legume, sarma, kebab/qebapa etc. Notwithstanding, the cuisine varies slightly between different regions of the country.
The most common dishes during the winter time in Kosovo contain pickled items like sauerkraut, green tomatoes, cucumbers, cauliflower, and condiments such as ajvar (hot or mild red peppers) which is usually seasoned in early autumn. They do also form popular appetizers throughout the year.
Varieties of bread are available throughout the country. Notably: pitalka, pita, cornbread (also known as "Leqenik"), kifli and whole wheat bread among others.
Pies in Kosovo are known as "trejte", or "pite". A variety of pies are common:
Typical salad ingredients include tomatoes, onion, garlic, pepper, cucumber, potato, cabbage, lettuce, carrots, and beans.
Tavë Prizreni is a traditional regional casserole from the southern city of Prizren. It is made with lamb, eggplants, green peppers, onions, tomatoes and is served hot. Sarma is also another popular lunch dish which (although not limited to) consists of minced meat wrapped with cabbage or vine leaves.
The most popular fish dishes constitute of fried freshwater fish like zander and carp. A speciality is considered the tavë krapi, carp cooked in a pot, more widely used in cities around the Dukagjini valley, notably Gjakova because of its relation with Shkodër. The garnish is composed of garlic, bay leaf, tomato, parsley.
Traditional Kosovan desserts are often made with sorbet which is enhanced with lemon or vanilla flavour. The mainstream pastries include Baklava (regional), Cremeschnitte, Pudding, Crêpe, Tulluma, Tespishte, Rovani, etc.
Drinking coffee is part of a big tradition in Kosovo. It is widely consumed and served everywhere at cafés, bars or restaurants. There are several varieties of coffee popular in Kosovo, which include instant coffee, brewed coffee, turkish coffee and Italian coffee.
The most popular traditional drink in Kosovo is Rasoj which is made of a fermented red cabbage. Another popular beverages include boza, lemonade, kompot (usually drank during the autumn and made with seasonal fruit such as quince), beer, as well as coffee and teas.
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