Latvian cuisine

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Description:
Latvian cuisine typically consists of agricultural products, with meat featuring in most main meal dishes. Since Latvia is situated on the east coast of the Baltic Sea, fish is also popular.

Latvian cuisine has been influenced by the neighbouring countries. Common ingredients in Latvian recipes are found locally, such as potatoes, wheat, barley, cabbage, onions, eggs and pork. Latvian food is generally quite fatty, and uses few spices.

Grey peas and ham are generally considered the stereotypical staple foods of Latvians.

Rupjmaize is a dark bread made from rye, considered the national staple.

A traditional Latvian cheese is Jāņu siers (caraway cheese); this is traditionally served during the celebration of Jāņi or midsummer. There is also a Latvian version of the smorgasbord, Aukstais galds. Latvia has an original version of pīrāgi, which are baked. Kvass (seen also in picture on the right) is often considered as a traditional Latvian drink, however it's quite popular in neighboring countries as well, and it is hard to establish its origin. Popular alcoholic beverages are beer, vodka and balzam.

Pickled mushrooms are another Latvian speciality.

Kliņģeris is a sweet pretzel-shaped bread that is usually served as a dessert on special occasions, such as nameday.

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