Fried cheese or smažený sýr, familiarly known as smažák, is a staple on Czech menus, from shabby pubs and bistros to middle class restaurants. The slices of cheese, coated with breadcrumbs and deep fried, are traditionally served with French fries or potatoes and tartar sauce. Find out more about smažák in the second part of our Czech Food Classics series.
Czechia is not famous for making world-class cheese. There is, however, one notable exception: a very peculiar local type of cheese made in Moravia called „Olomoucké tvarůžky" or, more colloquially „tvargle". It has been produced in the region around Olomouc for centuries and is famous for its aromatic smell.
Czech Minister of Agriculture Jiří Milek has called on the Czech
competition office to investigate supermarket sales of milk for just one
crown a litre. It’s the first time that the ministry has called on the
competition office to intervene against suspected price dumping.
Minister Milek announce to the move during a questions session at the lower house of parliament. He said the one crown a litre offer had been made by Kaufland, the country’s biggest supermarket chain, as part of a wider promotional offer.
Milek said he had also asked other authorities to investigate the case saying that it also raised questions about raising value added tax.
The Czech Confederation of Commerce and Tourism, which group large and
small retailers, has condemned as populism a government move to check on
sharp price rises of butter.
The check was announced by prime minister Bohuslav Sobotka following price rises which have seen the price of a pack soar to more than 50 crowns.
Sobotka said he was puzzled by the confederation’s reaction since similar moves had been announced in other countries.
In recent years, Prague has been attracting more and more visitors who are interested specifically in the local cuisine and beverages. Besides regular food tours there are also special one-off events, such as the Natural Born Butchers’ wine tasting party inspired by the pig slaughter season, combining mostly Bohemian and Moravian wines and specialties made from a traditional Czech breed of pig.
Czech dairy farmers have little reason to be cheerful. Latest European Union figures show they are being paid the lowest prices for their raw product across the 28 EU member countries. The average Czech price to producers in December came to euros 26.40/100 kg compared with the EU average of euro 32.03/100 kg. Czech farmers argue though that their production costs are not much below those applying across the rest of the continent.
Czech dairy farmers look set to get aid to the tune of 10.4 million euros within increased subsidies for farmers across the block approved by the European Commission, Czech Television reported on Monday. Agriculture Minister Marian Jurečka has welcomed the move, saying the sum allotted to Czech farmers was the 10th highest in the 28-member block. National governments can top up this aid with subsidies from state coffers. Czech dairy farmers are facing severe problems due to a milk glut and low prices across Europe.
Czech pork and milk producers are finding it increasingly hard to compete with cheap imports from other EU states. Individual producers are seeking ways to sell their products directly to end-consumers and the Czech Agriculture Ministry is considering giving them additional support from the state budget.