Serbian Badnje Veče Christmas Eve Menu
- Leave a Comment
- Related Items
January 6 is celebrated as Christmas Eve in the tradition of most Eastern Orthodox churches, including Serbian, which is my heritage.
Technically, in Serbian this day is called Badnji dan during the day, and in the evening, Badnje Veče. If you guess that “Dan” means day and “Veče” evening from this, you’d be correct. But as I remember, we always just called it Badnje Veče, all day long, in my household growing up.
The photo shows a typical Badnje Veče table at my house
Badnje Veče is a day of fasting from meat, fowl, dairy and egg products. But it’s not a vegan day! The main course of the Badnje Veče dinner is fish.
The traditional menu for this meal is extensive. And, meat and dairy or no, it is as filling a repast as any I’ve experienced. In the early 1990s, my mother, who was born in 1920 in Ruma, a town in Srem, near Belgrade, described the Badne Veče meals she remembered from her youth. I wrote it down in my recipe notebook. Here’s what she told me.
Badnje Veče menu
- Kolac on the table, but not eaten until Bozic proper
- Kompot – compote of cooked prunes and other dried fruit
- Posna pogaca (flatbread)
- Corba od patlidjan (tomato soup)
- Salata od pasulja (kidney bean and onion salad)
- Rezanci c makom (noodles with ground poppy seed)
- Rezanci c badem (noodles with almonds)
- Riba (fish)
In addition, a friend told me that apples with nuts and honey are also traditional. Just slice the apples and put out a little bowl of ground walnuts and a little bowl of honey. These are put together on the fly, one at a time, by the eater – like chips and salsa. You pick up an apple slice and dip the end into the honey. Then you dip the honeyed, sticky end into the walnuts. Presto: you’ve prepared yourself one lovely bite of apple with nuts and honey.
The most fundamental heirloom recipes are often most at risk for being lost in the sands of times. Why? One reason is that “everyone knows” how to make them, and so nobody writes them down. …
Learn how to make tea at home. It’s not hard to do, and the rewards are great. If you’re used to buying ready-to-drink (RTD) or instant teas, you’ll be amazed at the difference in freshness …
Learn how to cook greens using my quick and tasty methods, and you’ll never be at a loss for a fast vegetable side dish. Forget about fussing with steamer baskets or wating on pots of …
A version of this article featuring a Low Country boil recipe originally appeared in Madison Magazine, June 2001. It was an installment of my monthly column there, “Table Talk.” Occasionally my husband and I would …
Homemade buttermilk is tasty, easy to make, and sooo good for you. It’s not just a refreshing beverage, but also a healthful cultured milk product with all the essential goodness from lacto-fermentation that we humans …