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What do you know about Lithuanian cuisine? Not much? Then you’re just like us. Before coming to Lithuania, all we knew was that people there ate a lot of potatoes. I also assumed they’d eat fish in the coastal areas, but that was it.
During our time in Lithuania, we got to discover lots of amazing dishes. Yes, people here like to eat potatoes. They also eat meat, soups, herring and produce amazing cheese and honey. Oh, and the desserts. Did you know about the delicious Lithuanian desserts?
If you’re travelling to this Baltic country, don’t miss out on any of those amazing dishes.
Posted at 16:40h
This rustic savory potato and buckwheat pie is native to Western Ukraine and called Yavorivs’kiy Pie. Traditionally it has been served during big religious holidays like Christmas and Easter. It’s filled with silky mashed potato, fried onion, and boiled buckwheat. Serve it with a side of fried wild mushrooms in autumn, and a glass of cold kefir in summer.
- active dry yeast
- plus more for oiling the pan
- plus more for dusting
- sesame seeds and caraway seed for sprinkling
For the filling
- To make the filling:
- In a small saucepan, combine the buckwheat, 1 2/3 cups water, and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Change the heat to low and cover the pot with a lid. Continue cooking for 12 minutes, until the buckwheat is soft, but not mushy.
- In a separate saucepan, place the diced potatoes and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil and cook until potatoes are soft. Remove from the heat and mash with 1 tablespoon of butter into a smooth puree. Set aside.
To assemble the pie
- Preheat the oven to 375F. Brush the 8-inch springform metal baking pan with melted butter or oil, set aside.
- Punch down dough and place it on a lightly floured surface. Divide it into two pieces, one large and the other is tennis ball-size. You will need a smaller part to make decoration for your pie. If you don’t want to do it, then simply omit that step and don’t divide the dough.
- Roll out a larger portion into a big 1/4-inch thick circle. Mound the filling in the center of the circle and carefully fold the edges together, sealing them on top. You will get a ball-shaped pie. Lightly press it with your hands to make it approximately 8 inches in diameter. Place the pie seam side down into the baking pan and prick the top of the crust a few times with a fork to help release the air sitting baking. Brush the pie with the egg wash. Use the remaining dough to decorate the pie as you wish. Place the decorations on top of the brushed pie, and cover them with a think layer of the remaining egg wash. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and caraway seed.
- Bake the pie for 40 to 50 until golden brown. Remove from the oven and let cool for at least 10 minutes before slicing. This pie tastes fantastic with a side of creamy mushroom sauce or a dollop of sour cream.
Jump to recipe
I am a flatbread fan. Almost as much as a bread fan. Specially in the summer when I don’t want to crank up the oven in this small apartment, flatbread come to rescue. It is and has been our favorite quick mid-week dinner as well. I would call them flatbread and not Naan because it may or may not be similar to the authentic version that we all love around the world!
I myself have developed quite a few different versions of this. The sourdough flatbread is my favorite but it takes a lot of time as it is leavened using natural yeast. They turn out soft, utterly delicious and worth the wait. I also make these with commercial yeast. It is faster than the sourdough version yet equally delicious. Then comes the instant types that I make often. You can use baking powder and your flatbread will be ready in no time. Also backing soda can be used along with an acidic liquid and this is by far my go-to instant version.
lifewaykefir cultured milk
Not only that, I am taking these flatbread to another level by stuffing them with masala spiced potatoes.
These are so good, you don’t really need any curries, just some butter or a dip would be more than enough. So let’s get started!
You only need these three key simple ingredients to make the dough.
All purpose flourKefirghee or clarified butter
Kefir has enough acidity to react with baking soda, but you can replace that with baking powder too.
Bi carbonate soda will help negate some of the acidity of the kefir which is a good thing.
Mix all the above ingredients to form a dough. As you can see, it doesn’t have to be super smooth. The less you kneed the softer your flatbread will be. So only mix/knead just until everything is mixed and not more.
Cover and leave to rest for at least 30 minutes. You can leave this for longer up to a day. This can be refrigerated to be used on another day too but the bread will be slightly acidic.
You need two medium potatoes and some spices (of your choice)
These are the spices I used and recommend;chili powdercurry powdergaram masalacumincoriandersalt
optionally, you can use garlic/onion powder or seasoning mixes too.
Boil or microwave( 3-4 minutes) until soft. Break into tiny chunks and mix with the spices and set aside.
Divide the dough into 8 equal pieces and let these rest again for about 30 minutes or until you are ready to cook the flatbread.
Using a rolling pin, flatten the dough balls on a lightly floured surface. Do not go too thin. The size of a disk should be about the size of your palm.
Spread some of the potato mixture and cover with another disk. Press so that they stick.
Then, rollout until the dough sticks together and seal completely and the potato bits are laminated. Check the next picture
Once completely rolled out, the potato bits are almost incorporated to the dough. Now this is ready to be cooked.
Use a medium hot cast iron pan or a griddle to cook these.
Cook one side for at least 2 minutes flipping over constantly. No need to oil the pan. Make sure it is not too hot. You can brush the cooked flatbread with melted butter to keep it soft. Use garlic butter to add garlic flavor.
repeat the process with the rest of the dough
Once cooked, serve warm with your favorite dip.
I prefer to cut these into quarters when serving. These are bigger and chunkier than plain flatbread. By cutting them into wedges, you can control portion size if you are serving them as a side specially. Also, this reveals the stuffing and I think that looks extra good/tempting on a plate!
potato stuffed flatbread wedges
These are best enjoyed warm straight out of the pan. If you must, they can be stored at room temperature for up to 12 hours. Keep them wrapped in a tea towel to stop them from drying out too much. Reheat slightly before serving.You can refrigerate the leftovers in an air-tight container. Always reheat before serving.
I would not recommend freezing these even though technically they can be frozen. Plain flatbread can be frozen but when they have a filling like this, it is best when made fresh.
These can be made without the filling too.
#11 Potato Sausage
Of all the dishes we ate, this was one of the strangest ones. In Lithuanian, this is called Vedarai. The sausage can be completely meatless because it consists just of potato. Well, and the skin of the sausage. But that’s it. The version we ate also had small bacon bits in there, but that’s not mandatory for potato sausage.
We tried it in Vilnius and didn’t see it on many menus around the country, so if you have the chance of eating it, go for it. It might sound like a strange dish but it’s actually quite nice. A bit like mashed potatoes, just in the shape of a sausage.
#14 Cranberry Pap
Now that you’ve eaten so much food, you must be thirsty. What about some cranberry pap? It’s like cranberry juice, except it contains starch so it’s a bit thicker. Depending on the consistency, if there’s a lot of starch in it and it gets too solid to drink, it can also serve as a dessert. As a drink, it’s very refreshing in summer so you should try it.
#4 Cold Beetroot Soup
In Lithuanian, this dish is called Saltibarsciai. It’s the perfect dish to eat on a hot summer day as the soup is served cold. We were in Lithuania in winter and still tried it and it turned out to be very delicious. The name translates to “cold borscht” and you might be familiar with the hot version if you’ve been to Russia.
Here in Lithuania, the soup had a vivid pink colour and we found strips of beetroot in it. There was also a hard-boiled egg, which tastes very good in combination with the beetroot. On the side, we got a plate of hot potatoes that we dipped into the soup. These made the dish much more filling than expected, so you can easily eat just saltibarsciai for dinner without going hungry.
#7 Potato Croquettes
In many different restaurants, when we ordered food, we would get potato croquettes as a side dish. Those looked like small, fried potato balls and were very delicious. Imagine french fries, but in a different shape and with a bigger crust. If you’re eating out in Lithuania, you’re bound to come across these eventually and you’re going to like them.
Just like french fries, these need salt. So if you think they taste like nothing, add some salt and then try again.
Best ever potato stuffed kefir flatbread
- 350 g all purpose flour + extra
- 1 tbsp. ghee
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. baking soda
For the potato filling
- 2 medium potatoes
- spices (chili powder, curry powder, garam masala, coriander, cumin)
- a pinch of salt
Takes home baking to a whole new level
#1 Fried Bread Sticks
In Lithuanian, this amazing dish is called Kepta Duona, and it’s the one thing you need to try. Even if you don’t eat anything else, don’t leave the country without trying the breadsticks. Lithuanian bread is already special by itself and much darker than what most people are used to. Now imagine that dark rye bread cut into strips and fried. It’s absolutely delicious! What made it even better was that the portion we ordered had cheese sauce sprinkled over the top.
Fried Breadsticks are a typical snack to eat in a bar, together with beer. But if you’re lucky, you can also find them in restaurants as a starter. We got them from Etno Dvaras in Vilnius, a place where we ended up trying many Lithuanian dishes.
Kefir Cake for Dogs
- 1 cup unsweetened coconut shreds or any dog-friendly kind of seed
- 3 tablespoons melted coconut oil
For the cake filling
The original recipe creator says that just about anything can be used here, so feel free to get creative! They used:
- 1 cup ground beef
- ½ cup shredded butternut squash
- Assorted organ meat and toppers (e.g. blue mussels, salmon pieces, liver)
For the outside of the cake
- ½ cup beef gelatin powder
- 1 cup liquid kefir
- 2 cups hot liquid like bone broth
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Using a small amount of coconut oil, grease a large cake pan.
- To make the crust, mix together the coconut and coconut oil. Press the coconut and coconut oil mixture into the bottom of the cake pan, then place the pan in the fridge or freezer to allow the crust to set.
- With the filling done, move on to the outside of the cake. Start by mixing the gelatin powder and kefir, then allow the mixture to bloom for 4 minutes. In the meantime, bring the bone broth to a boil.
- Once the broth reaches a boil, remove it from the heat and give it 30 seconds to cool, then add it to the gelatin mixture. If you want, you can add color with natural vegetables or powders like blue spirulina or beets.
- Start assembling your cake by turning your cake filling out onto the crust. Then, put the cake and crust in the freezer for a few minutes to allow the two to bind together. Finally, pour the gelatin mixture over the top, place it in the fridge, and allow it to set for 30 minutes.
- Garnish the cake by piping plain, room-temperature cream cheese onto the top of the cake, then sprinkle on toppings like dog treats, dehydrated sweet potatoes, or dehydrated steak, and serve!
If you’re just a bit hungry and are looking for a snack, grab some kibinai from a bakery. These pastries are surprisingly similar to Spanish empanadas and you can find them everywhere. We saw street carts that just specialised in kibinai, but we also found them in many bakeries and even mini markets. Kibinai can be filled with various ingredients, but most often, you will see them with pork or chicken. If you’re vegetarian, try to find some with a mushroom filling.
#10 Cabbage Rolls
Balandeliai, as they are called in Lithuanian, are cabbage rolls stuffed with meat. They originally came from the Middle East and there are hints that they were part of Jewish cuisine around 1500 years ago already. Eventually, they spread over Europe and now many countries have their own version. The ones we tried in Lithuania were filled with ground meat, rice and vegetables. They came with an orange-pink sauce. I have no idea what it was made of, but it went very well with the cabbage.
#6 Lithuanian Bread
When it comes to bread, we have very different ideas of what makes good bread. Daniel loves white bread while I’m in love with dark bread. And therefore, I loved Lithuanian food. People here like to eat dark rye bread, the one with a strong taste that leaves you full for hours. It is so delicious! As I already mentioned, the fried breadsticks are made from dark rye bread. But it’s also very good on its own, with butter, honey or cheese. That cheese platter we mentioned above? It was incredibly good with dark bread. Even Daniel said that the rye bread worked well with cheese, so if he likes it, you’re going to like it as well.
Tinginys is my favourite Lithuanian dessert! True, we didn’t have many desserts while in Lithuanian. Usually, when we finished eating our main dishes, we were so stuffed that we didn’t get anything else. But on our first evening, we went for this chocolate cake and it was delicious. Tinginys translates to lazy because the cake is so easy to make. It consists of chocolate and biscuits and that’s pretty much it.
We saw tinginys in many bakeries all over Lithuania so you shouldn’t have problems finding it.
Cepelinai are potato dumplings filled with meat and you can find them all over the country. The name translates to zeppelin, because of their shape. These dumplings are made from grated potatoes and if you’re vegetarian, you can also find them stuffed with curds. In most places, they come with sour cream and bacon bits, but they go well with all kind of sauces.
Don’t make the mistake of thinking that the portion isn’t going to be big enough. The cepelinai are insanely filling. Two or three are more than enough to leave you full. We saw a plate with eight in a restaurant, but that was for sharing with four people.
How to Make a Kefir Cake for Dogs
Kefir is an extremely unique and versatile ingredient, especially in baking. Its sharp, tangy flavor can add an interesting kick to just about any recipe, even when you’re baking treats for your furry friends. Besides being delicious, kefir is also super nutritious and is packed with essential nutrients and probiotics for gut health and digestive support.
Ready to get baking? Let’s take a look at three great recipes for kefir cake for dogs that are sure to be the highlight of your pup’s day!
#9 Potato pancakes
In Lithuanian, these are called Bulviniai Blynai, and they’re amazing. You can find potato pancakes in other countries and we already knew them from German Christmas Markets. But this was the first place where we saw a stuffed version. Now that’s a great idea!
We still went for the plain ones with sour cream and bacon bits, as we wanted to try the original version.
The pancakes consist of grated potatoes that are held together with egg and flour. The dough gets fried in a pan and that’s it. Very easy to prepare and very delicious to eat. As we already said, you can eat them with sour cream and bacon bits. But we also saw them on the menu with fruit jam. While we didn’t try that, the combination of salty and sweet sounds very nice, so let us know if you go for them.
Easy Kefir Birthday Cake for Dogs
Big Dog Pet Foods
This kefir birthday cake is just about everything a dog baker could ask for: it’s healthy, it’s visually appealing, and dogs go wild for it every time it’s made. It can be made with everyday raw dog food as the base, so it’s easy to gather the ingredients.
What really sets this cake apart, however, is the unique icing. It’s made from a combination of kefir, gelatine powder, and blue spirulina for color, giving you a healthy, sugar-free, delicious result that’s visually striking to boot. If you want a simple, easy, quick, option for a great kefir dog cake, this recipe is just the thing you need.
- 1 pound raw dog food of your choice
- 200 milliliters kefir
- 3 tablespoons gelatine powder
- ½ teaspoon of spirulina
- Garnishes of choice
- Place the dog food patties in the fridge for 24 hours to defrost, then use them to fill the cake tin and place the cake tin in the freezer.
- Once the cake is completely refrozen, remove it from the freezer and place it on a cup. The cake should be hanging over the edge of the cup.
- Place the kefir and spirulina in a mixing jug and mix them together until smooth. Add the gelatine powder, allow it to sit for 2 minutes, mix again, then pour the mixture over the top of the cake for a sort of frosting.
- Smooth out the frosting with a spatula, garnish the cake with blueberries and any of your pup’s other favorite treats, and serve!
Rocky Kanaka is an entrepreneur, pet rescue advocate and dog dad to a rescue boxer named Flip, a blind Cane Corso called Kobe, and a terrier mix named Zoey. He’s also a pet chef and owner of The Dog Bakery, which specializes in dog birthday cakes and fresh baked dog treats. His three dogs can’t get enough of the dog cakes and treats!
Lorna Paxton Ladd is a passionate dog lover and enthusiast of The Dog Bakery. She loves spoiling her 3 rescue dogs with dog cakes and jerky. A 15 year veteran in the pet industry, her aim is to educate pet parents on the best recipes, products, tips and tricks to optimize the human/canine bond. Her favorite product at The Dog Bakery are the customizable dog birthday cakes.
Especially in the coastal regions, you are going to find herring on the menu. You can find it salted, smoked or baked, but we tried the salted one. It came on a plate with so many side dishes that we could barely see the fish anymore! So much for ordering it as a light starter.
Even if the portion was giant, it was delicious. At least for me. Daniel isn’t a huge fan of fish that tastes very fishy, and herring is one of them.
Salted herring is served cold, but the warm potatoes on the side make up for it. It also came with beetroot and a salad, and of course some sour creme. Lithuanians love their sour creme, so don’t be surprised if you see it everywhere.
When I was a kid, my parents always kept a jar of kefir in the fridge. They’d leave it there for a while until it was ready, then took out the kefir grains, put them into a new jar and filled it with milk. And after some time, the new kefir would be ready.
I don’t remember what happened to the kefir grains but the drink eventually disappeared from our fridge. And I didn’t think much about it until we travelled to the Baltics. Kefir is popular all over the Baltic States, both for cooking and as a drink. In some Lithuanian restaurants, kefir was even cheaper than water! The cold beetroot soup that I mentioned above also has kefir in it. That’s where its vivid pink colour comes from.
#5 Lithuanian cheese with honey
Did you know that Lithuanians make some very good cheese? It might not be well-known internationally, but it is absolutely delicious. We ordered a cheese platter as a starter and didn’t regret it for a second. Some of the cheese had herbs in it and the platter was served together with dark bread and honey.
Talking about honey. From what we read, Lithuanians love their honey. And rightfully so, as the honey was one of the best we’ve ever had. So even if you cannot taste various Lithuanian cheeses, try to at least find some honey somewhere.
#13 Tree Cake
This cake is called Sakotis in Lithuanian and you should try it if you have the chance. The name tree cake comes from its funny shape. The cake is cooked on a rotating spit and that’s why it looks so strange. On the inside, you can still see the different layers, not as strong as in the German Baumkuchen, but they’re visible.
The cake was surprisingly hard when we tried it, so we ate it with chocolate sauce on top. If you want to, you can buy a whole tree cake in supermarkets. We’ve seen them everywhere so you shouldn’t have a problem finding them.
Doggy Kefir Cheesecake
DeDamselfly on Instructables
This cake with kefir is every bit as delicious as it is appealing to look at. Its crust is made from dog biscuits, so use your dog’s favorites for a familiar, comforting taste to begin with. The crust, however, is what sets the stage for the main event: a delicious, hearty cheesecake-like filling made from gelatin, kefir, and fresh fruit that’s a sweet, tangy, and creamy treat, unlike anything your pup has tasted before.
Last but certainly not least, the flashy garnish of fresh berries encased in a honey-gelatin mixture makes for the perfect flourish, both for your pup’s eyes and taste buds. Even though it looks and tastes absolutely perfect to your furry friends, it’s surprisingly easy to make, so feel free to give it a shot!
- Scant 1 cup crushed dog biscuits (Pick your pup’s favorite!)
- Coconut oil (enough to bind together the dog biscuits)
- 1 packet of gelatin
- ½ cup milk kefir
- 1 cup kefir cheese
- 1 TBSP honey
- Dog-friendly fruit of your choice (e.g. blueberries)
- Using your hands or a pestle and mortar, crush the dog biscuits into small bits.
- Combine the coconut butter and coconut oil to get the crumbs to stick together. If the mixture is too thick, add a bit of coconut oil until you reach the desired consistency.
- Mix the biscuits and coconut butter/oil mixture together until a crust is formed. Densely pack this crust into the bottom of a cheesecake pan. Put the cheesecake pan in the fridge and allow it to set.
- In the meantime, start on the cheesecake layer. Add the gelatin mix to the milk kefir and kefir cheese. Pour this mixture over the crust and return to the fridge to set.
- Once the cheesecake layer has set, arrange fruit on top of it. Then, pour a mixture of honey, water, and gelatin over the fruit, cover it again, place it back in the fridge, and allow it to set.
- Once the gelatin has set, remove the cheesecake from the pan, cut it into slices, and serve!
#17 Herbal Teas
While in Lithuania, we had some amazing herbal teas. Tea is great in winter when the weather is freezing outside, and we tried various ones with caraway seeds and linden. We also saw hot tea cocktails on some menus. Those often contain juices and syrups, but unlike a regular non-alcoholic cocktail, they are served hot. Perfect for winter, if you’re looking for a sweet and sticky drink.
So there you have it, a selection of our favourite dishes from Lithuania. We tried to include starters, main dishes, desserts and drinks. While this list is nowhere near complete, it should give you an idea of what to expect when travelling to Lithuania.
If you know of any dishes that we haven’t mentioned and that you love (like Kugelis, for example, which is an oven-baked potato dish), leave us a comment below!
We have lots of resources about Lithuania that will help you plan your trip:
Until your next adventure!
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One warning: don’t let my description scare you off.
Kvas consists of bread. Bread is boiled in water and then rests for multiple hours until it ferments. The drink is called kvas. When we ordered it, we saw a raisin floating in the glass, which makes sense because it’s often made with fruit to give it a slightly sweet flavour.
To be honest, after hearing how it’s made, we thought it would be very weird. But it turned out to be a nice drink, not one that we’d order every day, but one that we could have from time to time. Also, you don’t have to worry about the alcohol content as it’s usually very low (0,5 – 1,2%) – low enough that we’ve seen it in the non-alcoholic drinks section on menus.