The festive dinner on Czech Christmas Eve is mostly associated with fried carp and potato salad, but few people know that this is a fairly modern tradition, established only after the Second World War. In the old days before the tradition of fried carp and salad was established, Czechs used to eat more humble meals, although they came in a rich variety of styles.
It is not just at local markets where gingerbread in all shapes and colours can be found. Baking the delicacy is a treasured tradition among most Czech families as well. On average each household bakes around eight types of gingerbreads, known as the perník, ahead of Christmas and children are often excited to partake in their preparation. To find out more about the way they are made, Radio Prague visited a museum that specialises in the baking of exquisite gingerbreads.
Obložený chlebíček, which literally means garnished bread, is one of the most popular Czech snacks. These small, two or three bite open-faced sandwiches with assortments of toppings are traditionally served at parties and events and their invention is credited to Czech deli chef Jan Paukert. Find out more about the Czech specialty in today’s edition of Czech Food Classics.
Traditional Czech cuisine could hardly do without the dumpling, which typically accompanies meat dishes, such as svíčková omáčka or roast pork with cabbage. But there are also ovocné knedlíky, dumplings filled will fruit, that are served as a meal on their own. Find out more about this sweet treat in today’s edition of Czech Food Classics.
Svíčková na smetaně or simply svíčková is a traditional Czech dish and one of the most popular Czech meals. The beef sirloin in a thick, creamy vegetable sauce is a staple on Czech menus and is traditionally served at weddings and on other special occasions. Find out more about the delicious sauce in today’s edition of Czech Food Classic series.
If you ever visited an open air market in Bohemia and Moravia, you will very likely have come across the popular “trdelník”, a tube-shaped sweet pastry that has taken the country by storm in recent years. But you may also have spotted a more modest, cone-shaped confectionery, called “štramberské uši” or the Štramberk ears. It may look similar, but it tastes quite different and unlike the trdelník it is a genuinely home-grown delicacy. The legend of the Štramberk ears dates as far back as the 13th century AD and it is not for the faint-hearted.
The traditional špekáček – a short fat sausage best roasted on a stick over a campfire – is a Czech summer staple. It is a treat that Czechs associate with their childhood and one that is linked to socializing on carefree summer evenings when friends get together, roast sausages over a campfire, drink beer and talk long into the night. The špekáček – which literally translates as “fattie” is more than just food – it is a phenomenon that links people across generations.