Belarusian cuisine is based mainly on products available in Belarus like: potatoes, cereals, pork, mushrooms and forest fruit. Dishes are prepared with simple ingredients and easy to cook.
Due to the long and harsh winters and the nature of the work of the majority of the population, the traditional cuisine in Belarus consists of nutritious meals. However, the most characteristic is the preparation process. Dishes are mainly roasted, cooked and stewed and very rarely fried.
Belarusian cuisine uses a small amount of spices while the mandatory element of almost every dish is cream. Restaurants in Belarus have a distinctive, homey look and offer numerous traditional dishes. There is no problem to find places where you can try local specialties, which often happens in Western European countries.
On Belarusian Embassy site you can read:
The implementation of the dishes of the Belarusian national cuisine is one of the requirements for catering facilities (except facilities, specializing in the preparation of national cuisine of other countries). That’s why Belarusian cuisine is on the menu of all restaurants and cafes.
For breakfast you can eat scrambled eggs or omelette served with bread and vegetables .
The meat option includes bacon and homemade sausage with fried potatoes.
In a sweet option, there are most often pancakes with cheese, cream and jam.
You cannot miss fluffy cheese pancakes called syrniki served usually with cream, homemade jam, honey or apple mousse. Syrniki are very delicate inside, while from outside they are very crispy. While being in Belarus, don’t forget to try them!
However, if anyone wants to bring back memories from childhood, he can always order ordinary porridge 😉
The perfect proposal for winter is aromatic soup, usually served with cream.
In restaurants you can try slightly sour soup called soljanka? It is a traditional soup with addition of water from sour cucumbers, sausages, spices and cream 😉 Modern version can contain olives or capers.
The perfect proposal for summer is chlodnik- soup with beetroots and cream served with cucumber, egg and dill.
Among the meat dominates pork, although in Belarus you can eat also: veal, beef or poultry.
Dishes are served with mushrooms or vegetables: mostly carrots, cabbage and beets.
The staple are potatoes, which are also called “second bread”. Due to the large potato consumption Belarusians are called “potato people”.
Personally I’m not a fan of potatoes due to their popularity in Poland. However, in Belarus, potatoes are rarely consumed simply boiled as it takes place in Poland. Potatoes are subjected to various processes like: grating, mashing, roasting or frying. It seems that the basic potato dish is draniki, known to us as potato pies, served with cream.
Draniki is an universal dish, you can serve them with pork fat, mushrooms or meat.
The popular potato dishes are also: potato casserole with bacon and onions, bliny – potato pancakes, potato sausage and kliocki (noodles) – potato cake served pork fat or bacon and fried onions.
Flour dishes are also very popular. In Belarus, you can try kolduny – small dumplings served alone or as an addition to soup and pelmeni – dumplings stuffed with raw meat. Dumplings can be served from water or oven.
You can also try sweet pierogi stuffed with various forest fruit.
Belarus is also famous for excellent drinks and not necessarily just alcoholic. Popular are homemade compote, kvas, or tea with honey and spices.
My number one was tea with orange, cranberries, sea buckthorn and rosemary.
In Belarus there’s a wide selection of alcoholic beverages. In addition to vodka, very popular is also Krupnik and Zubrowka. I can recommend also : cranberry, horseradish and horseradish with honey vodka. Especially the last one is worth a try.
However, in the middle of winter, after all-day sightseeing, I was most fond of mulled wine.
Belarus also produces excellent chocolate and marshmallows called zefir. They resemble big meringues. In cafes you can try a variety of desserts and cakes.
Try dates with mascarpone cheese served in restaurant La Kave in Brest
Restaurants and prices:
Food in Belarus is relatively cheap even in very good restaurants .
For soup you have to pay around 2-3€ The cost of dishes – dumplings, pancakes or cheese cakes is also about 5-7 rubles. The cost of the second dish is about 6€. Coke costs about less than 1€. In elegant restaurants in the centre of Minsk prices are higher. For the second dish in the restaurant I paid 10€, while for dessert 6€.