‘Why don’t you eat anything?’ – Chef of Tufenkian Restaurants asks me with peculiar Armenian accent.
‘You don’t eat and I feel ashamed that my guest is hungry! — He complains indignantly after about dozens of delicious dishes. — How can I eat, if you don’t? So I won’t eat as well!’
Arisa. It’s traditional Armenian wheat porridge with chicken, which is cooked the whole night long until chicken becomes almost invisible.
To understand the level of outrage multiplied by Armenian temperament and Armenian hospitality, you need to imagine impressions from Armenia I’ve got during all these days:
A lot of food. Loads of tasty and original food that is completely different in each region. If you ask about Armenian cuisine an average person, who knows at least roughly where Armenia is located on the map, they will name two dishes: shashlik and basturma.
Dilijan dolma rapped in raspberry leaves. One should be very careful while eating due to extremely high chances to eat one’s own fingers.
Even my first father-in-law, Armenian by nationality, stole a way in the heart of his wife with savoury basturma that he cooks by himself. This is the legend of their family told as a joke when they all get together in the evening.
My Armenian trip is coming to its end, and I want to make a confession: I have eaten neither shashlik, nor basturma so far. But now my knowledge of Armenian cuisine is so wide that, having gained several kilos, I’ll definitely add a couple of extremely tasty traditional Armenian dishes to my menu.
Dilijan lamajo with three kinds of cheese, mint and a few more types of herbs. Haven’t you got hungry yet?
I’ve tasted khash, different kinds of baklava, world’s best beef and lots of other different things. And although Armenia is a small country, there’s a great variety of food in different regions.
And I can’t say which cuisine is the best. They are just different. Everywhere. And all of them are equally tasty.
And Dilijan smells like fresh mountain air and smoke. This infatuating combination makes you spend a lot of time outdoors, simply enjoying the air.
In addition, there is a great Tufenkian Hotel in Dilijan, located in refurbished ancient houses of Dilijan old style that make you feel romantic.
One wants to live here. And not just to live, but to enjoy the life.