Skip to main content

Lejka (Lentil Stew)

This recipe for lejka (lentil stew) is based on my mother-in-law's recipe from Bitola, Macedonia. The recipe can be be modified to comply with the LENT fasting requirements, by simply excluding the 'zaprska' or substituting the oil in the 'zaprska' with water. If you are making this recipe during LENT, you can serve with bread from the HOLY BREAD recipe from my blog.

Ingredients (serves 4 people):
  • 200 grams of green lentils
  • 1 brown onion
  • 2-3 garlic cloves
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 green pepper or capsicum 
  • Vegeta, salt and pepper

    Zaprska (thickener):
  • 1 - 2 tablespoons of plain flour
  • 1 - 2 tablespoons of red paprika
  • 20 - 30 mls of vegetable oil (can substitute with water if fasting)

1. Place the lentils in a medium saucepan full of cold water on the stove and bring to boiling point. Drain the lentils then fill the saucepan with new water (this will essentially 'clean' the lentils).

2. Add the onion, garlic, carrot and green pepper to the saucepan and allow them to boil together with the lentils for approximately 20 minutes, or until the vegetables have softened. Tip: poke the onion with a toothpick a few times to allow water to seep in while boiling.

3. Take the vegetables out of the saucepan and use your fork to 'mush' into a paste. Add the vegetable paste back into the saucepan with the lentils. Season with vegeta, salt and pepper, and boil for another 20 minutes or until the lentils are cooked. Tip: keep checking that there is enough water in the saucepan, as you do not want your stew to stick to the bottom of the saucepan.

4. To thicken the stew, you will need a small fry pan to create the 'zaprska'. Heat the oil and add the flour. Stir until the flour has dissolved, then stir in the red paprika. Once the 'zaprska' starts bubbling, remove from the stove, add to the saucepan and stir.

5. Serve with some beautiful crunchy bread and feta cheese.


Popular posts from this blog

The Magic of Easter

The traditional red, hard-boiled egg is the most prominent symbol of Orthodox Easter. Orthodox Christians will spend Thursday (Veliki Cetvrtok) dying dozens of eggs and decorating them with different colours and designs. However, it must be noted that the first three eggs should be dyed before dawn on Thursday, before Good Friday. It is said that these three eggs will not go rotten for years to come if they are dyed before the sun rises.

The first egg is dedicated to God; the second egg is dedicated to the head of the house or the 'Domakin'; and the third egg is for good luck. The first egg is said to be magical, and is therefore placed next to a religious icon in the house. It is even believed that this egg can cure illnesses. It is for this reason that the housewife or the 'Domakinka' should not attempt to dye these three eggs on an empty stomach. She must eat at least a mouthful of bread, as any eggs dyed on an empty stomach do not bring any luck. It is even believed…

Trilece Cake (Tresleche)

Trilece (3 milk cake)
Image from

6 large eggs100gm caster sugar200gm plain flour1 tbsp baking powder1 tbsp vanillin sugar300ml thickened cream375gm tin of condensed milk800ml milk Optional: 1 small cup of coffee creamer300gm Farsitura Karamela (pictured above) or any caramel glucose syrup or caramel sauce i.e. Nestle Top 'n' Fill
Preheat oven to 180 degrees CelsiusSeparate the 6 egg yolks from the 6 egg whitesWith an electric mixer, beat the egg whites and add the caster sugar and the vanillin sugarBeat on on high until a thick, glossy consistency is reached, then add each egg yolk individually followed by the the baking powder and beat for another minute Stir in the flour with a wooden spoon and combine wellLine a medium sized baking dish with baking paper, then pour in mixtureBake in oven for 30 - 40 minutesAllow cake to cool then remove from the baking trayIn a small saucepan, combine the thickened cream and condensed milk and heat over a low te…

Oriz so Kopani (Baked Rice & Drumsticks)


6 chicken drumsticks1 small brown onion1 carrot1 stick of celery (optional)300gm riceVegeta, pepper, saltSunflower oil for frying


Cover drumsticks in water and bring to the boilEmpty water and refresh saucepan with new waterSeason drumsticks in water with Vegeta (and celery) and allow to boil on low heat for approx. 45 minutesPreheat oven to 180 degrees CelsiusFinely dice onion and carrot and fry until softAdd rice and fry together with onion and carrot until well combinedSeason with Vegeta and pepper, to tasteGrease baking pan with sunflower oil and pour in fried rice mixturePlace drumsticks on top of rice and cover rice with the seasoned water (drumsticks do not need to be entirely covered with water)Bake in preheated oven at 180 degrees Celsius for approximately 1 hour or until rice has cooked (rice should be moist, not dry)