The clean natural environment guarantees healthy meals, prepared in a traditional way. Many of our regional delicacies have their origins in Belarus and Lithuania. Those dishes of the highest quality as to the products and preparation methods used, are awarded the prestigious prize of the "Pearl" and "Our Culinary Heritage".
Let’s start with an appetizer... to begin with, we suggest the legendary herring a’la Bialystok. Or maybe something lighter - salads with Korycin, Narwan or dried cheese, Podlasie mushrooms with horseradish or dried porcini pate will satisfy the tastes of the most demanding gourmets. Time for soup. Of course, we choose borscht – a’la Podlasie with dried mushrooms and cabbage, or Bialystok way - with juicy apples, or maybe mushroom soup, preferably Bialystok honey fungus soup. In summer, be sure to try chlodnik a’la Bialystok served with eggs and potatoes, or Lithuanian borscht with beetroot roots and leaves, and in the most sophisticated version - with the addition of crayfish necks.
Among the main dishes, the unquestioned queen is potato babka, rooted in Jewish cuisine. It was once served with a blot of sour cream, today more often with mushroom or goulash sauce. Another contender for the crown - Kishka, that is, potato stuffing neatly packed in pork bowels and baked in a well-heated oven. It is difficult to find it outside Podlasie. Kartacze, also called cepelinai, derive from the Lithuanian cuisine. Their oblong, oval shape can really bring to mind an airship – zeppelin - flying above Bialystok over 100 years ago. Cepelinai are large dumplings made with pastry containing grated potatoes, formed around a stuffing of chopped meat. They are served doused with fat, crackling and onion. You can also try vegetarian versions with mushroom, cheese or sauerkraut filling. Another noteworthy dish with Lithuanian roots are kaldyny - small dump¬lings made of wheat dough stuffed with meat. Tartar kol-duny are their slightly larger version. Pierekachevnik also originates from the cuisine of Tartars who have been living in Podlasie for centuries. It is an oval, rolled dumpling made of many thin layers of dough layered with beef and mutton stuffing or - in the sweet version – with cheese or apple stuffing.
You must try Podlasie smoked pork and dried lunch meats, especially kindziukas and kumpiak. Traditionally smoked fish are also delicious. They are served with brine-pickled gherkins from barrels immersed in the waters of Narew River, which - as legend has it - delighted Napoleon himself, and sauerkraut made with pickled whole heads of cabbage. And what shall we offer you to drink? Of course, bread kvass or even bread and hops kvass, local craft beers, or maybe something stronger - a shot glass of local moonshine made of grain, nalewka – kind of tincture – made of dog rose (żenicha), hedgenettle (bukwicówka) or zubrovka vodka (made of bison grass). Finally, it is worth mentioning the unique Bialystok buza. This slightly sparkling, cloudy drink of a bright straw-like colour is made on the basis of millet, lemon and sugar. Perfectly refreshes and quenches thirst. It has a sweet and sour taste with a slight hint of raisins and yeast. Buza should be well chilled and served in the company of halva. In 2017, the drink won the first prize in ‘Our Culinary Heritage - Tastes of the Regions’ competition and, since 2018, it has been included in the list of traditional products of the Podlasie Voivodeship kept by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development. You will struggle to find it outside the capital of Podlasie. A recipe for a buza was brought to Bialystok by Macedonians fleeing the war-torn Balkans. The first buzna, or the place where the buza was served, was set up over 100 years ago and, soon after, new ones appeared. In Bialystok of the 1920s and 1930s, it was fashionable to have buza with halva in a Macedonian buzna, visit a Turkish confectionery for a Turkish delight, and another delicious snack was Jewish bialas, i.e. yeast roll with onion and poppy seeds.
For dessert, we serve a golden sękacz, baked slowly on a wooden roller rotating over the fire. The dripping mass creates characteristic knots (Polish: sęki), hence the name of the delicacy. The layers of dough resemble tree rings. This recipe came to Podlasie from nearby Prussia. Mrowisko (anthill) derives from the Lithuanian tradition - a very picturesque baking: a mound made of thin angel wings sprinkled with poppy seeds, raisins and doused with Podlasie honey. It is also worth trying a fluffy marcinek, which consists of several dozens of thin pancakes layered with cream. It used to be served at the Tsar’s court in the Białowieża palace.