Sunday, April 29, 2007

Back from Whogoslavia

Doberdan, my fellow eaters!

We're back from Whogoslavia? and slowly leaving jet lag behind for my customary state of regular old lag.

I'll be back in the kitchen tomorrow, but first thought I'd share some culinary memories from a month in the Western Balkans:

Best eats: Cevapcici at Konobo Sadrvan in Mostar,Herzogovina

Runner-up: the little fried fish at the place next to Pizzeria Castro in Gunduliceva Poljana, Dubrovnik Croatia

Loveliest setting for eats: Inat Kuca (House of Despite, Sarejevo, Bosnia

County with best pizza: Croatia

Country with worst pizza: Everywhere else

Most disturbing pizza description: "Pizza sauce, cheeze, maize, brussels sprouts", Legenykert Restaurant, Budapest, Hungary

Reason we ate so much goddamn pizza:

Best supermarket name: The Croatian chain Konzum

Best ice cream flavor: Chestnut

Best unexpected discovery in a bar: The newborn kittens in a crevice of the rock outcropping above Buza, Dubrovnik, Croatia

Thing my brother-in-law ordered that I then wished I had ordered: Squid stuffed with ham and cheese, Lobran, Croatia

Best picnic food: Prsut from the little grocery in Stanjel, Slovenia

Most awesome-looking snack: Bobi Party Mix

Best unclaimed porn star name: Bobi Party Mix

Restaurant I wished we weren't eating in when I saw the prices, but then liked because Milo ate a complimentary tuna bruschetta and my salad (spinach, prsut, funghi, and olives) was good enough I'm going to try to recreate it here in Brooklyn:
Trattoria Fellini, Sarajevo, Bosnia

Best Orange Fanta Knock-off, from a packaging standpoint: Pipi

Best cooking implement provided by a self-catering apartment: Cappuccino Machine, Apartment Silak, Ptuj, Slovenia

Essential cooking implement most frequently missing in self-catering apartments of the Western Balkans: Dishtowel

Best complimentary breakfast: Guest House Halvat, Sarajevo, Bosnia

Complimentary breakfast engendering such a positive response from the picky-eating set that it somewhat redeemed an otherwise shitty hotel experience: Hotel Tabor, Sezana, Slovenia

Complimentary breakfast that was every bit as shitty as the hotel in which it was served: Hotel Putnik, Novi Sad, Serbia

Best Communist era hotel dining room, especially the mod-for-1974 chandelier: Hotel Putnik, Novi Sad, Serbia

Most endearing logo: Zdenka Cheese

Best Museum of Beekeeping and Wine Cellar: Family Zivanovic's Museum of Beekeeping and Wine Cellar, Sremski Karlovci, Serbia

Place I'd love to visit on Gourmet Magazine's nickel: Salas 137, Fruska Gora, Serbia

All in all a glorious, grueling trip, even if I did eat too much freakin' pizza. Send me your cevapcici recipes!

And if you find yourself at loose ends in NYC this Thursday, May 3, with 35 bucks burning a hole in your pocket, skip dinner and come to The Decameron a food-and-trickery themed benefit for the Debate Society, featuring me and nine far-worthier readers and storytellers. Hear some hot Betty Crocker Boys and Girls Cookbook action. Buy a raffle ticket and you may just win yourself an autographed copy of Dirty Sugar Cookies to supplement the one you already own!