A few weekends ago it was the Putters turn to host Come Dine With Me. The Putters, weren’t too happy when they pulled Bosnia out of the hat, but Bosnia it was and we were all in for an evening of Slavic fun!
On arrival we were all treated to a glass of Austrian white wine – the link between Austria and Bosnia coming from the days when Bosnia was part of the Austro-Hungarian empire. (Bosnian wine, grown in the Herzegovina region is hard to come by in Putney!). It was a light crisp wine – a good drink to start on, on a breezy spring evening. We were also all introduced to our Bosnian selves – I became Kata.
For Predjela (Starters), we had a spread influenced by Turkish mezze -Krastavac ijogurt juha (Chilled yoghurt and mint soup), served as a shot in little shot glasses. Very refreshing! Cevapi (Traditional lamb and beef sausage), Zeljanica (Spinach and borek cheese phylo pastry), Hummus and Avjar (Roasted aubergine and sweet pepper). With the Zeljanica, which was one of my favourites, you could see the mediterranean influence of Greece. The hummus which was home-made from scratch was also delicious – no shop bought variety can beat home-made and once you have the right ingredients it is much easier to make than you imagine it to be. The Avjar had a lovely smokiness that comes from roasting the aubergines, but with a hint of the sweetness from the roasted peppers – I ate too much and there were still two courses to go.
When the Mrezni (Main course) arrived, it wasn’t very hard to find space for more. We were presented with Janjetina Kotlet with salate. Lamb chops and salad. This was a good example of the balance that exists in Bosnian food between the influence from Central Europe (from the time of the Austro-Hungarian empire) and the Turkish, Middle Eastern and Mediterranean influence. A light salad was also needed to counteract the over indulgence in all other areas.
Finally to round the whole meal off, we had Pustinje (pudding). For pustinje, we had Tufahija (filled apple). I would be hard pressed to tell you what the cored apples were filled with (by this stage that crisp Austrian wine was giving everything a fine haze), but they were delicious never the less. Despite all the Putters concerns a triumphant feast.
With all that eating, everyone needed a little exercise to work off some calories. As mentioned previously, the Austrian wine had taken its toll too and it was at this stage when chatting about the Putters recent 90’s party, that someone (PM/JM?) decided it would be good to crack out the 90’s playlist again and take ourselves down memory lane. So, we transported ourselves back to being awkward teenagers with Nirvana, Ace of Base, the Cardigans, Dr Alban, Boys to Men, Pulp (the list goes on and on) and danced the night away – like it was 1999!
P.S Photographs to come, as soon as I get them off JM’s camera!