Sofia Hosts Traditional Balkan Foods Forum
Villagers from Cherni Vit, presenting their unique green cheese, are among 160 participants that gathered Friday in Sofia for Terra Madre Balkans, an event devoted to traditional food from across the region of the Balkans.
The forum, organized by Sofia University, the Bulgarian Ministry of Agriculture and Foods, Slow Food International and Sofia Municipality, brings together representatives from all Balkan countries in Sofia, Friday-Sunday (July 16-18).
The event includes tastings of authentic local foods and a conference on traditional foods and food safety, hosted by Sofia University.
Green cheese is unique to the village of Cherni Vit in the northern footholds of the Stara Planina mountains near the town of Teteven. It is soft, has a characteristic scent and forms a natural green crust. The cheese, which was declared endemic to Cherni Vit by experts, is made from sheep's milk using a very basic technique but under special conditions. Green cheese production was all but extinct in the last decades when only a a handful of shepherds knew how to make it, and was rediscovered and revived only in the last few years.
This weekend's event aims at the preservation and promotion of traditional foods with a similar fate and similar unique qualities.
For a full program of Terra Madre Balkans, see HERE.
Whereas I applaud this initiative I think that there is some enthusiastic reporting here. I attended this "festival" today and the marquee that it is held in cannot accommodate more than (I will be generous) more than 20 exhibitors so I cannot see where the figure of 160 has come from. It took me less than 5 minutes to visit every stall.
Please be accurate.