Traditional Czech food is not exactly what one would call dietary, however it perfectly goes with the flavourful Czech beer.
It mostly consists of pork or beef meat with sauce and a side dish, the most common and liked being dumplings. Dumplings (“knedliky”) are the Czech traditional side dish made from wheat or potato flour, boiled in water as a roll and then sliced and served hot.
Other side dishes are: rice, potatoes (boiled, baked or fried).
Czech people love Svičková (read “svitch-co-va”) or Rajská (read “raiska”), a somehow interesting combination of meat with sauce and whipped cream.
Chicken, duck, turkey, fish, rabbit and lamb are also used in some very tasteful Czech dishes. A good choice can be the Guláš (read like in English, “goulash“), even though it basically belongs to traditional Hungarian cuisine.
If you are in a restaurant and you aren’t really in the mood to spent hours studying the menu, you can chose another Czech classical, that is Fried Cheese (Smažený Sýr, read “smazhenee seer”) garnished with potatoes (I recommend baked potatoes) and Tatarská Omáčka , read “tatarska omachka (Tartar sauce).
The most appreciated Czech soups (polévka) are onion (Cibulačká, read “tsibulachka”) and garlic soup (Česneková polévka, read “Chessnekova polevka”), but the speciality for Christmas is the fish soup (Rybí polévka), made out of Carp, the Czech traditional Christmas delicacy. Also very tasty is Goulash Soup (Gulášová polévka), a spicy thick (creamy) soup, served with brown bread.
Czech salads contain delicious mayonnaise or dressing-sauce. Some salads contain also sugar, so if you’re not a fan of sweet salads, just ask them not to put any…. In general Czech salads are not only really tasty but also huge, so you can served as the main course without worrying that you will be hungry immediately after.
Czech beer is perfect; nothing to say, but what if you are in a pub or beer hall, and all of the sudden you would feel hungry? Nothing to worry about.The good old Czech people had the problem solved centuries ago…
Don’t be surprised to find in the menu special offers like “Against great thirst & hunger” (“Proti velké Žízeni”, read “proti velke zhyzeny). That means food or snacks that particularly go with beer.
As French invented all sorts of cheese combinations to go with their fine wines, the Czech people have their own delicacy: nakládaný hermelín , read “naakladanee hermeleen” (“pickled ermine”). “Hermelín” (“ermine”) is a special type of cheese, very soft inside, covered in a thin white film.
Another beer delicacy are Utopenci, read “utopentsee” (“Drowned”), a somehow funny name for sausages, I would say, but at the same time a very practical one. Utopenci are sausages pickled in vinegar, oil, onion, red pepper, and different spices.
As said before, they go perfectly with beer and are usually made by the house or beer hall itself.
If neither of the above raised your interest, our last but not least recommendation are Klobásy (“Grilled sausages”).
They come with mustard, horseradish, brown bread and are guaranteed to satisfy your stomach needs at least for a while, if not for the whole evening.
You will most probably find all sorts of Grilované Klobásy (Grilled Sausages) at food stands on tourist tracks. Not only do they smell irresistible, but they taste addictive as well.
Famous are the Czech Pancakes (Palačinky – read “Palachinky”), filled with ice-cream, jam or fruits and coated in whipped-cream, almonds or sugar.
Try also the traditional Fruit dumplings (Ovocné Knedlíky, read “ovotsne knedliky”) and the various forms of tasteful Czech cakes (Kolač – read “Kolach”) filled with different fruits, jams or curds.