Macedonian cuisine is a rich mosaic of influences from the Mediterranean and Middle East, and the neighboring countries in the Balkan Peninsula. It is known for its opulent family meals, and the regional dishes play important symbolic roles in local traditions and family celebrations.
Macedonia: The Cookbook is a love letter to Macedonian culture, and a cuisine deeply rooted in its land and traditions. Through over 100 mouthwatering recipes for mezze dishes, salads, soups, fish, poultry, meat, vegetables, and delicious sweets and preserves, chef and food writer Katerina Nitsou shares the authentic flavors and wisdom brought along with her family, recreated and adapted in her North American kitchen.
With beautiful photography of the food, people, and landscapes of North Macedonia, this cookbook captures the country’s essence and belongs on the kitchen shelf of every food lover.
This light and delicate cake is only mildly sweet, with a bit of tang from the yogurt, giving it a sophisticated flavor despite its simplicity. I almost always have the ingredients on hand, so I make it often for my young children. For entertaining, I often serve it with a dollop of Slatko Od Chreshi (Cherry Preserves, page 262) and a glass of slivovitz, plum brandy. I recommend serving this cake warm.
8 tablespoons (113 g) unsalted butter at room temperature, plus extra for greasing
½ cup (100 g) white sugar
1 cup (240 ml) plain full-fat Balkan yogurt (or any plain full-fat yogurt)
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon orange zest
2 cups (250 g) all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon kosher salt
Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting
Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Grease a 9-inch (23 cm) springform cake pan with butter.
Using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or a large bowl and a hand mixer, cream the butter and sugar together until fluffy, about 4 minutes. Mix in the eggs, one at a time, until fully incorporated, about 1 minute. Fold in the yogurt and the lemon and orange zests. Set aside.
In a separate large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Carefully fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients just until a batter is formed. Be careful not to over-mix.
Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan, smoothing the top with a spatula. Bake for 30 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean.
Cool to room temperature. Remove the cake from the pan and dust with confectioners’ sugar before serving.
Recipe reprinted with permission from Interlink Books.