Join twowildtides on the country challenge. Each week, we’re going to be heading to a new country (in spirit). Primarily, we’ll be cooking a meal from each country; but we’ll also be watching travel documentaries, reading travel blogs, and listening to music. During the global pandemic, travel is largely inaccessible. We want to reignite our wanderlust, satisfy our travel bug as much as we can, and learn some new things along the way. I have a feeling our bucket list will have a number of items added to it through this experience as well. We created a simple alphabetical spreadsheet with all the countries of the world, and each week we will draw a random number that corresponds with a country on the spreadsheet.
This week we find ourselves in the country of Latvia. I don’t know much about Latvia, but after watching the following travel vlog while we ate this week’s meal, it looks like somewhere I’d really enjoy as part of a European backpacking trip:
Throughout the research, it becomes immediately obvious that people in Latvia love soups (‘zupa’) and rye bread. The national dish is called Pelēkie zirņi ar speķi and it is a bean and pork stew. Although I would have really enjoyed making a Latvian soup with a rye sandwich on the side, we opted for something a little more substantive: Karbonade (pork cutlets) with dill potatoes. Taste Atlas rated Karbonade the #1 dish of Latvia. The blog ‘What to See in Latvia’ also highlighted Karbonade in their post about traditional Latvian dishes and the website OnLatvia.com has a page about Latvian cuisine that discusses Karbonade.
These recipes were easy to follow and the meal came together very quickly. With a side of greens such as broccoli or beans, this is an awesome weeknight meal that many people would enjoy.
The pork was tender on the inside and crisp on the outside. The mushroom sauce was rich and delicious. The potatoes were hearty. I know I say this a lot, but this meal was so satisfying! It really hit the spot and I am looking forward to making it again sometime soon.