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Lithauanian "delicacies"?

Oslo
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Lithauanian "delicacies"?

I have the weird, but tasty hobby which is buying local products (cheeses, bread, sweets etc.) the places I'm travelling, bring them home in my suitcase, and enjoy them at home...

What would you recommend that I'll buy of Lithauanian products in Vilnius? What is their specialities?

Thanks in advance! :)

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Vilnius
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1. Re: Lithauanian "delicacies"?

I guess you should follow the advices of the other travelers, because the taste of lithuanians slightly differs from the taste of the "westerners". So, since I'm a local, I'll just tell you about some local "delicacies" from a "local point of view", so you'll be able to compare the "tastes" ;).

"Simple" products: dark rye bred. The best producer is "Vilniaus duona", you can recognise it from the label you can see here:

www.vilniausduona.lt/index.php?id=661&act=kat

The most popular brands (daily) are: "Bočių" and "Palangos" (that one is so called "white", though it is dark too) and dietetic bread "Rugelis". My favorit is "Ruge" (pure rye bread) and "Ajeru duona" (made by other producer). If you keep the bread in a fridge it stays fresh long enough, at least 3 weeks (and more). Older and dried bread is not so tasty, but it is much healthier (according to the doctors).

White curd cheese, look for the "NAMINIS suris" ("HOME-MADE cheese" - it's really as if it was made at a small rural farm in ~18 century). There also is smoked curd cheese.

Here you can see how it looks at the supermarket (the brand here is just "Curd cheese"):

rokiskio.com/images/zalkarv_varsksuris.jpg

, it also may be wrapped into the paper, especially "Naminis" one.

Honey. Very simple meal e.g. while travelling or just while sitting in the garden in summer: dark rye bread + white curd cheese + honey. Also + tea or coffee.

"Skilandis" - a smoked chopped meat, looks like this:

…hautetfort.com/images/medium_skilandis.jpg

Should be rather expensive (otherwise it may be "simplified"), lithuanians eat it either on celebrations, or traveling wild. Skilandis does not go bad quite long time and even in bad conditions, eg, lithuanians use to take it to the yacht when sailing in the open sea or in the ocean. Tip: take a very thin slice of "Skilandis", a normal slice of dark rye bread and a fresh cucumber (or a tomato if you prefer it). That's all. It is especially good when you are camping wild, especially if it's cold. Beer or vodka is not necessary, but, if you wish... ;) .

Local alcohol: herbal vodka "Trejos devynerios", aka "999", and the mead "Midus" (aka "Stakliskiu midus" because it is made in Staklishkes town only).

Previously you've been asking about 'kvass' (I guess it is latvian version of russian "kvas" and lithuanian unofficial "kvasas"), in lithuanian it is "gira" and one may find even "genuine gira" in the supermarkets, but it is not "genuine" anyway. Genuine gira is home made only and must have a taste of the yeast. You may ask it at the restaurants.

Grocery stuff: there is the one genuine and original lithuanian grocery producer - Ruta. Their website - www.ruta.lt/page/titulinis.php?&lang=en

There is another lithuanian producer "Naujoji Ruta" ("New Ruta") which produces simple "soviet style" grocery stuff. Generally it is the same as it used to be in soviet times, quite cheap and tasty. You can try some sweets to know what it means ;).

And yet another local but "foreign" producer is "Kraft Foods Lietuva“. When they started in ~1991, they declared that local chocolate and the sweets doesn't fit the taste of the westerners, but western products also doesn't much fit the local taste :) So they promised to create a new sort of chocolate, which would fit both tastes. The result is "Karuna" (The Crown"). Indeed - it's quite good and popular. It tastes as if it was "western" chocolate, but better ;).

And finaly my 3 favorits - the chocolate "Sostines" ("Of Capital") and the sweet "Nomeda", you can see them here www.pergale.lt/en/catalog/list/…

, and a cake "Danutes pyragas", there are few sorts of it.

I've mentioned the producers, because there are plenty of various stuff from Turkey, Poland, Ukraine, Moldova, China, etc. in the supermarkets, so one may be lost without knowing what to look for.

Sorry for the long post ;).

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Oslo
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2. Re: Lithauanian "delicacies"?

WOW... It's really good to get a locals point of view! :)

If the Eastern European taste is that different from the Western, I don't know which category to put myself in, because I love the food I've been eating and the products (bread, cheeses, chocolate) I've bought in Tallinn, and think their even better than the Norwegian ones! ;)

The Lithauanian products sounds quite similar to the Estonian (positive).

I look more and more forward going to Vilnius now, so thank you again. :)

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3. Re: Lithauanian "delicacies"?

Again Tadasmm has given some great advice. I would add to his list some smoked fish and herring. Since you are from Oslo, you should try it, maybe not as good, but who knows? Same at the restaurants, they all have some kind of smoked fish dish or herring with mushrooms, with tomato, etc. Try that for sure!

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Oslo
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4. Re: Lithauanian "delicacies"?

Thanks for the advice! :)

Norway
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5. Re: Lithauanian "delicacies"?

I would add a sweet delicacy of Baltic countries - chocolate coated curd cheese "Nykstukas". You can buy it in every supermarked. They are small, about 50 gr. with a picture of a small red-hat- boy on a pack. Everybody loves them! But be aware, they are easy to addict to...

Oslo
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6. Re: Lithauanian "delicacies"?

Yeeey! Cheesecake, my favorite! :D

I'll guarantee you that I'll try that one! ;)

Oslo
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7. Re: Lithauanian "delicacies"?

Or did you mean cheese, not cheesecake?

Doesn't matter, I looove cheese too...

LT
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8. Re: Lithauanian "delicacies"?

"...Or did you mean cheese, not cheesecake..."

Pehaps Vaiva's knowledge of English is better... ;)

In lithuanian it is "small chocolate-coated cheese" ("glaistytas surelis"), and "everybody loves them, yes :D.

You can look at "Nykshtukas" cheesy here:

www.pienozvaigzdes.lt/…

(those with almonds and with truffle filling are cool)

. There are plenty of rather different sorts of them, well, more or less different, and some are better, some are worse. At the soviet times they were "scarce goods", and there were 2 sorts at all, as i still recall it from my childhood, but these 2 were definitely most delicious food I've ever ate ;). You can look at them to recognize it at the supermarket here:

http://www.uriga.lt/index_lt.php?id=produktai

- the second one from the top "Glaistytas varskes surelis". Next is the same, just with poppy-seeds - that "second soviet sort". The price is around 1 Litas. Perhaps the taste is neither exotic, nor very special, but pretty subtle and pretty well balanced ;).

Oslo
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9. Re: Lithauanian "delicacies"?

Aha! ;)

I just understood what the chocolate covered cheese was!

I've eaten them in Estonia... There they called the cheese Kohupiim!

I also know kvass as the Estonian Kali!

Oh, I'm really excited about going to Vilnius (I'm going the 12. of May)! :D

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10. Re: Lithauanian "delicacies"?

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