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Recipe: How to make Ćevapi like a real Balkan Slav

Ćevapi also known as “Ćevapcici”, the dish of minced meat, popular in Bosnia and Herzegovina and other Balkan Slavic countries since the days of the Ottoman Empire invasion upon these territories. Ottoman Empire hasn’t survived on Balkans, however Ćevapi have survived and they even became one of the most favorable summer grill dishes across Balkan states such as BiH, Croatia, Serbia, Macedonia, Bulgaria etc.

Recipe how to make Ćevapi

For good Ćevapi and burgers you need good meat. Fine barbecue meat that can be purchased in stores; even if the quality is good, can never be as good as when you make it yourself. Here are some recipes and tricks for perfectly grilled meat.

What kind of meat to use?

As for meat, there are various combinations. You can try only with beef; however, experts say it is best if you add more kinds of meat. Here are some suggestions.

Take 500g of beef and 250g of pork and mutton. Or, you can combine 500g beef and just 250g pork or mutton.

Meat grinder

If you want to make barbecue meat yourself, you will need a grinder or if you do not have a machine, ask for the meat to be grinded at the butcher’s. Meat for the barbecue should be to cut into bigger pieces, then grinded twice.

Before you grind the second time, the meat should be kneaded with bare hands, for the mixture to bind properly, and according to some old recipes some mutton fat should be added, because the fat binds the meat well. However, if the meat is already greasy, it will be enough. All this should be done the day before, because the best mixture stays overnight before it is ready for the barbecue.

What else to add?

As for spices, salt and ground pepper are indispensable, and you can always add other if you want to give a specific taste to the meat. For this purpose, you can add a little parsley powder mixture and many barbecue masters add onion and garlic. Our recommendation is that you add 2 to 5 percent of very finely chopped onion to the mixture. Herbs and spices can be added between the first and second milling. Some masters add bread crumbs, or, grinded old bread to the meat for better texture.

Small tricks

In a part of the prepared mixture you can subsequently add smoked bacon or other smoked meat and cayenne pepper. That’s how you get gourmet donuts or burgers, depending on how you want to shape the meat.

Ćevapi can be made with bare hands, previously oiled or you can take a plastic bottle. It is best to use a bottle of 2l, so that you cut only the upper third of it. Put the bag with the mixture into the funnel and push the mixture through the opening. You can get ćevapi in a perfect shape, just need to specify the length.

During baking consider adding a few sprigs of fresh rosemary and a little olive oil, as follows.  Dip the sprig of rosemary in olive oil and coat the meat until baked, but only after the crust is created, when the ćevap is almost cooked.

If you share our love for tasty Balkan Slavic dishes you can find more food here: 8 Authentic Tasty Meals of Southern Slavs

Bon appétit or should we say “Dobar tek

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