Croatian Chevapcici and Sopova Salad
Chevapcici (pronounced Che-vap- chi-chi or Chevap) are small sausages (without casings) from the countries that were the former Yugoslavia, Czech republic, Slovakia and some parts of Italy. They are street food you can get from grill stands near the beaches and of course everyone makes them at home. I grew up eating them at Teta Mitcica's house (Teta means Aunt and it's pronounced Meet-seat-sa) She would have to make tons of them since there was always an army of people when this was on the menu. Everyone eats 6 or 7 and if you are a boy you will eat way more. You can never stop once you start. They were always grilled over charcoal and everyone stood waiting to get hem as soon as they came off the flame. They were served with onions and pita bread. Mitcica made hers with beef, pork and veal and never added grated onion or paprika but, this is how I make mine. I hope she will like them! I have served them with a salad (salata) that is topped with Feta cheese and some potatoes. Everyone loves these, you have to make them.
"You know the way you smell when you first come home from the beach? Well, I want to make a cologne that captures the essence of that smell"
Mitcica and Ivica all tanned from being at the beach all day. Now they want some Chevapcici and Salata!
You will need:
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 lb ground pork (or equal veal,pork and beef.....or just beef!)
- 5 cloves of crushed garlic
- 1 tsp hot paprika
- 1 grated onion
- 1 tbsp chopped parsley
- salt and pepper
- red onion
- red/green peppers (sweet)
- feta cheese
- 1 crushed garlic (small)
- red wine vinegar
- olive oil
- boiled potatoes (cooled and chopped)
- 1 chopped onion
- olive oil
- lemon zest
Step 1: Put beef and pork into a bowl and add crushed garlic, hot paprika, grated onion, chopped parsley, salt and pepper. If you prefer to leave out the paprika or make it mild instead of hot go ahead. This is the kind of thing that everyone makes slightly different. Mix gently but thoroughly to prevent a tough chevap.
Step 2: roll into equal sized logs they should be like a fat finger. I use a small ice cream scoop to get them all the same size then shape into chevap and I like to wet my hands to form them.
(for some reason I didn't take many pictures for this recipe! sorry, my bad.)
Step 3: make salad in a large bowl. I have not added exact amounts for ingredients because it's really based on your preference or the size of your crowd. The salad dressing is made by pouring the ingredients directly on the vegetables and then mixing all together (as compared to making the dressing in a container & pouring over) I take some olive oil, some red wine vinegar and pour onto vegetables. I add the crushed garlic and some salt and pepper. Toss the salad and taste. If it needs more vinegar, add it etc.. I normally plate the salad and crumble the feta on top but, if you prefer to serve family style with a big bowl then just add the crumbled feta to the top of the salad in the bowl. This is similar to a Greek salad just no lemon juice and dried oregano. I also sometimes add a tsp of sugar if it needs something.
I never have store bought salad dressing in my house. I have always just bought lots of different good vinegars and oils and I make my own.
Step 4: Grill the Chevapcici- few minutes on each side-do not over cook.
Step 5: while the Chevapcici are grilling make the fried potatoes. In a large pan fry onions until they start to brown (medium heat) then add potatoes (turn up heat and add more olive oil if necessary) add parsley, garlic, a bit of lemon zest, salt and pepper. I fry in enough olive oil to get the potatoes crunchy. This takes a few minutes since they are already cooked you are just getting them browned and crunchy. Taste them and add more salt and pepper if necessary.
At Teta Mitcica's house they would eat these with onions and bread and salad. I take the onions out of my salad that are soaked in the vinegar and oil and eat them together with my meat. I like the oil and vinegar along with the onions that have kind of quickly pickled by this point.
Yoy!!! these are really good!!