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From Bosnia with Love

From Bosnia with Love

Issue 91 April 2012

Bosnian cuisine is a careful balance of Eastern and Western influences. Fatema Zehra handpicks some Bosnian favourites for an authentic taste experience.



Punjena Paprika

4–5 bell peppers
450g minced meat
2 onions
5–6 cloves of garlic
3 tomatoes
85g rice
1 tbsp tomato paste
Olive oil
Salt, pepper and oregano for tasting
1–2 tbsp of vegetable broth (optional)

Cut off the top part of the pepper and remove the seeds from inside, being careful not to break the peppers. Wash the peppers and leave them aside ready for stuffing later.

Chop the onions finely into small cubes and crush the garlic cloves.

Pour one or two tablespoons of olive oil in a pan, cook the onions and garlic on medium heat until the onions are lightly browned. Add two diced tomatoes, a handful of rice and cover. Leave to cook for a few minutes then add the minced meat, salt, pepper and oregano. Cover and continue cooking the mixture until all the minced meat turns brown and is cooked through.

Once the mixture is slightly cooled, stuff the peppers.

Cut the sides of a tomato to seal the opening on the top of each pepper. Boil two to three cups of water and add one tablespoon of tomato paste and vegetable broth (optional), alongside a bit of salt and pepper.

Place the peppers in a deep pot, pour a bit more olive oil on the peppers and add the water-paste-broth mix to the pot, filling it only to half the height of peppers. Cover the pot and cook on medium-low heat until the peppers and the tomato caps are well cooked.


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450g lean ground beef
450g lean ground lamb
1 small onion, finely chopped
3 large cloves garlic
4-5 sprigs parsley, finely chopped
60ml hot water
½ tsp baking soda
Salt and pepper to taste

Finely chop the onion, garlic and parsley until it is almost minced. Add these to the meat in a mixing bowl and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Mix baking soda with the hot water and pour into the meat. Gently start to turn the meat with your finger tips, working the seasoning through the meat and combining the mixture. You want the meat to stay fairly loosely packed, airy, and coarse.

Put the meat mixture back in the fridge and let it sit for at least two hours, or overnight if possible. This will allow the garlic and onion to marinate and tenderise the meat.

After the meat is sufficiently chilled, pinch off a small amount that is about the size of a small meatball. Pat and form this into a small sausage shape.

Heat your grill to medium to high heat and cook the c´evapi for about two to three minutes each side, turning once, until they are cooked through and a deep brown colour.

C´evapi, like kafta, can be eaten on a platter with salad and fries or wrapped in a pitta. A good mix of accompaniments on the side would be red or white onion, finely sliced or chopped.


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