Ajvar – Nikola Škorić CC BY-SA 2.5

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Ajvar (in Cyrillic language Аjвар or Айвар) is a sauce ubiquitous in the Balkans and the neighboring areas (such as Friuli-Venezia Giulia)


  • peppers,
  • hot peppers,
  • eggplants,
  • garlic.

According to the quantity of capsaicin present, it can be of sweet, burning, or very hot varieties. Ajvar can be spread on bread and mainly used as a condiment for meat and ćevapčići.
The word ajvar comes from the Turkish word havyar, meaning salted fish eggs, and shares that origin with the word caviar.

How to make Ajvar

The preparation of ajvar is quite complicated and requires a certain amount of manual labor, especially skinning the cooked peppers. The cultivar mainly used is a bell pepper called roga, which is horned, broad, red, horn-shaped, has a skin relatively easy to remove, and ripens at the end of September. Traditionally prepared in mid-autumn, when peppers are most abundant, family and neighbors often gather to prepare them.
Cooked on a plate over the stove or in the oven, the peppers and eggplant are allowed to cool so that it is easier to remove the skins and seeds. They are then either blended or cut into pieces. Next, the mush is stewed in a big pot for many hours by adding sunflower seeds, oil, and garlic. Finally, salt and sometimes vinegar is added, and they are packed and sealed in glass containers.
Homemade Ajvar from Leskovac and Macedonian Ajvar is registered at the World Intellectual Property Organization to protect its brand name.
Most of the ajvar is prepared by hand, and industrial production remains very modest. Ajvar is part of the so-called zimnica (winter foods), including pickled peppers and tomatoes.

Places of origin Serbia, North Macedonia – Regional Recipe from Friuli

Enrico Massetti was born in Milan, Italy.
Now he lives in Washington, DC, USA.
Still, he regularly visits his hometown
and enjoys going around all the places in his home country
especially those he can reach by public transportation.

Enrico loves writing guide books on travel in Italy
to help his friends that go to Italy to visit
and enjoy his old home country.
He also publishes books on the Argentine tango dance.

You can reach Enrico at enricomassetti@msn.com.