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Czech Cuisine
"Dobro Chut" is what Czechs say to each other before they begin a meal. It means "Bon appetit" or "Hope it tastes good!" Czech food is rich and hearty. The "knedlik" is the most common side dish. It is a dumpling, made of either wheat or potato flour that is boiled as a roll of dough, then cut into slices and served with gravy. Most dishes are pork, or beef, but chicken, turkey, fresh-water fish, duck, lamb, and rabbit are common as well. On menus you often see the word "Medallions": it just means a piece of meat, sliced flat, like a medal. A "spis" is like a shish-kebab, grilled meat and vegetables on a spear. "Svičkova" (pronounced sveech-kova) is the national dish. And get ready to eat lots of potatoes. 

Sauces, gravies, and salad dressings are uncommonly sweet. A common meal for children is noodles, with loads of sugar, ground poppy seeds and melted butter. Other flavors seem to be used very sparingly; the overall effect is, some would say, perhaps a bit bland. Spices most commonly used are: caraway, poppy, paprika and dill. Condiments are: mustard (smooth and grainy), sauerkraut, tartar sauce, horseradish and very sweet ketchup. Most dishes come with "Zeli" or cabbage. Many things are marinated.

Czech food is not exactly diet food. When you buy a "salad" at a deli, what you often get is a very thick mayonnaise-based dressing and small pieces of vegetables and meat. Vegetarianism is only recently catching on in Central Europe, so there aren't many options except beets, turnips, carrots, onions and potatoes. 

A bowl of garlic soup will satisfy the flavor seeker - it's called "Cesnekovy Polevka." The onion soup is good, as is fish soup, such as "Drstkova Polevka," or tripe. The national fish is the Carp, and "Karp Peceny s Kyselou Omackou," which is carp with sour cream sauce is common. The potato pancake "Bramborak" and the fried cheese "Smazeny Syr" are two excellent side dishes. Meat is generally fresh and the quality is good. 

The national beverage is beer, but the national liquor is Becherovka, a medicinal aperitiv made of many herbs and said to aid digestion. There are tours of both the Becher factory and Staropramen brewery, as well as a well-preserved estate brewery that's many centuries old.
Adapted from 
Houskove Knedliky (Bun-dumplings)
  • 1 lb farina (or flour) 
  • 2 cups lukewarm water 
  • 1 scant cup of milk 
  • 2-3 eggs 
  • 1 tablespoon salt 
  • 5 large (old) buns, horns or white bread
First, cut (old) buns, horns or white bread into small croutons. If fresh,toast or frie so they are crisp. Select the best farina or flour you can get. Mix water, milk, eggs, and salt, keep adding farina until dough is smooth and makes bubbles and doesn't stick to the bowl. Mix in croutons. Divide into 4 parts, form uplong ball dumplings. Let set for about 30 minutes. Place into salty boiling water, cook for about 25 minutes. Cut with string. 
Bramborove Knedliky (Potato dumplings)
Purchase readily prepared mixture in envelope. If not available, then 
  • 2 lb potatoes 
  • 8 tabelespoons farina 
  • 10 tabelespoons flour 
  • 1 tablespoon salt 
  • 1 egg
Boil potatoes, then peel and mash. Add farina, flour, salt and egg. Work dough well. Divide into 5 dumplings. Place into boiling water, cook for 20 minutes. 
Kynute Knedliky (Raised dumplings)
  • 1 lb flour 
  • 1/2 cup milk 
  • 1 tablespoon salt 
  • 1 whole egg 
  • 1 egg yolk 
  • For yeast: 1 teaspoon sugar 
  • 1/2 oz. yeast 
Sift flour, ad sugar, crumbled yeast and 1/2 cup lukewarm milk. Let set until yeast bubbles up.Add 1 tablespoon salt, egg, yolk and mix untildough is smooth. Let dough raise. Divide into dumplings, size of largeoranges, place into pot of boiling water. Cook 10 minutes, turn over and cookanother 10 minutes. Alway cut raised dumplings with a string.