Sunday, 16 October 2016

Istria abecedary: U is for Učka

The Učka is Istria's highest mountain and its best-known physical landmark. It's part of the Ćićarija mountain range, which is the northeasternly geographical boundary where Istria meets continental Croatia. At a height of 1401 metres, it can be seen from most parts of Istria. Locals here say that if the Učka is wearing a 'hat' (in the form of cloud cover), then it's going to rain!

U is also for Ulika, the Istrian word for olive. Olive trees grow across the peninsula, and Istrian olive oil has a delightful fruity taste.

Monday, 3 October 2016

Istria abedecary: T is for Tovar

Tovar is the Istrian word for donkey. Donkeys used to be a common sight here when they were used as working animals to carry and transport goods, especially up and down hilly terrain.

T is also for Tartufi, or truffle. Istria is one of the few regions in Europe where black truffles and the highly-prized white truffle can be found.

Sunday, 2 October 2016

Istria abecedary: Š is for Šparoga

Šparoga is asparagus (Š is pronounced 'sh'). This is one of the many gastronomic delights that grow here in Istria. Asparagus  shoots make their appearance in the early spring, growing in forests. They have a strong and distinctive flavour, and are most commonly eaten scrambled with eggs, in risotto or with pasta and a drizzle of olive oil.

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