Belarusian Dishes- What to eat and drink in Belarus

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In just three years, several Belarusian and foreign investors have doubled the number of hotels in the country and the ministry of tourism introduced a 10-day visa-free regime. Plus, Belarus has implemented a number of innovations (including the revolutionary decree legalizing cryptocurrencies and smart contracts and making such transactions tax-free) to facilitate doing business in Belarus. Now is the time to visit Belarus and try its food and see its beauty before it became full of tourists. Belarusian dishes is a big enough reason to visit the country. Follow Bestechz to find out right now!

Contents

Draniki

Dranaki-Belarusian Dishes
Draniki-Belarusian Dishes

Potatoes are a common feature of most Belarusian meals, with over 300 national recipes on offer. Rumour even has it that the average local eats more than 180kg of potatoes a year!

Draniki is all about the humble potato. These crowd-pleasing pancakes are made by mixing together grated onions and potatoes, before frying in oil. Back in the 19th century, when they first rose in popularity, they were served for breakfast. Now they’re dished up throughout the day, alongside cold cuts, mild cheeses, pickled vegetables and a generous dollop of sour cream.

They’re especially delicious oven-baked in a ceramic pot with sausage, onion, carrots, mushrooms and cream.

Kletski

Kletski-Belarusian Dishes
Kletski-Belarusian Dishes

Another famous Belarusian dish is kletski – boiled flour balls filled with meat. This dish is similar to Polish pierogi and Russian pelmeni, but kletski are bigger and crescent-shaped. Kletski can be eaten on their own with roasted onions and sour cream or can be added to soup.

Tsibriki

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Tsibriki is a popular snack that pairs well with beer. Made with potato and a cheese filling and then fried in a pan, tsibriki is a great road food option for a trip around the attractions of Belarus.

Machanka

Machanka is both a soup and a stew that consists of homemade sausages, bouillon and thick pancakes which are dipped into the finished bouillon. This traditional dish is typically served on Maslenitsa, a holiday of pagan origins that is still celebrated today in Belarus, Russia and Ukraine.

Kalduny

Kalduny-Belarusian Dishes
Kalduny-Belarusian Dishes

Before the 19th century, kalduny were dumplings made from unleavened dough and crammed with all sorts of mouth-watering fillings like smoked meats or fried mushrooms. They would be boiled much like Russian pelmeni and Polish pierogi, before topping them with a spoon of sour cream. After their costume change, they became mincemeat patties coated in grated potato. Still yummy, but a totally different offering altogether.

Sticking with the potatoey theme other treats you should try include sashni, a cottage cheese stuffed version of the reborn kalduny. Tukmachi, a gratin-like potato cake served with salted curd or milk. And babka, meaning grandma, which is basically draniki but on a larger scale. Baked in a deep dish, it’s soft on the inside and beautifully crisp on the outside.

Belarusian beverages

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Feeling parched? Kvass is a great little thirst-quencher. The brown drink is made by fermenting black rye bread, water and yeast before being flavoured with raisins, fruit or honey. Described by some as an acquired taste, I’d definitely recommend trying this Slavic refreshment it at least once.

First served by the Grand Duchy of Lithuania way back in the 15th century, vodka has long been the most popular of Belarusian spirits. The best-loved varieties are cranberry vodka, vodka made from bread and a blend with pepper and honey. Another of the most well-known is zubrovka, which is made from the bison grass that grows in Belovezhskaya Pushcha National Park.

Babka

Babka-Belarusian Dishes
Babka-Belarusian Dishes

One of the most recognizable Belarusian dishes (in particular, thanks to a strange name) is a potato babka (which means ‘old lady’). The dish that has been on both the peasants‘ and the princes’ table. In short, loved by all.

But what is special about a simple potato casserole called “babka”? The secret is simple: a cast-iron frying pan, natural products and languishes on the fire do their thing! Delicate potatoes with a light crust, combined with meat and sour cream, will be enjoyed even by those who consider such dishes “heavy.”

For cooking enough to grate the potatoes on a small grater, mix with finely chopped onions, pieces of brisket and salt, and then bake in a frying pan under the lid. The result will amaze you!