Circassian cuisine

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Circassian traditional house and traditional cuisine
Haliva (Хьэлжъо) and Mataz (Мэтазэ), two of the prominent traditional Adyghe snacks

The Adyghe cuisine is rich with different dishes.[1][2] In the summer, the traditional dishes consumed by the Adyghe people are mainly [dairy products] and vegetable dishes. In the winter and spring the traditional dishes are mainly flour and meat dishes. An example of the latter is known as ficcin.

Circassian cheese is considered one of the more famous type of cheeses in the North Caucasus.

A popular traditional dish is chicken or turkey with sauce, seasoned with crushed garlic and red pepper. Mutton and beef are served boiled, usually with a seasoning of sour milk with crushed garlic and salt.

Variants of pasta are found. A type of ravioli may be encountered, which is filled with potato or beef.

On holidays the Adyghe people traditionally make Haliva (Adyghe: хьэлжъо) (fried triangular pasties with mainly Circassian cheese or potato), from toasted millet or wheat flour in syrup, baked cakes and pies.

In the Levant there is a famous Circassian dish which is called Tajen Alsharkaseiah.[3]

Fresh meat dishes (Lisch'em qixasch'ich' shxinighwexer)[edit]

  • Boiled Mutton (Melil gheva)
  • Lamb Boiled in Cream (Shateps-ch'e gheva schinel)
  • Circassian Goulash (Libzche)
  • Meat Goulash (Lits'ik'wlibzche)
  • Shepherd's Lamb (Melix'we li ghezchech'e)
  • Sheep Sausage (Zherume)
  • Thin Mutton Sausage (Nek'wlh)
  • Liver Sausage (Themsch'ighwnibe)
  • Liver with Sheep's Tail Fat (Themsch'ighwre ch'apere zesch'ighwu)
  • Thick Pancake with Liver and Eggs (Themschighwre jedich'ere zexelhu)
  • Liver in Fat (Themschighwr schem k'wets'ilhu)
  • Sheep's Tail Fat Cracklings (Ch'ape libzchaxwe)
  • Fried Sheep's Tail Fat with Honey (Ch'ape ghezchare fore)
  • Sheep's Tail Fat with Honey (Ch'ape daghefo)

Dried and smoked meat dishes (Li gheghwamre gheghwpts'amre qixasch'ich' shxinighwexer)[edit]

  • Meat Roasted on Skewers, Shashlik (Li dzasech'e ghezchawe)
  • Fried Meat (Li teibech'e ghezchawe)
  • Fried Meat and Potatoes (Lire ch'ert'ofre zesch'elhu ghezchawe)
  • Fried Meat with Onions (Lim bzchin sch'elhu)
  • Meat and Beans Broth (Lire jeshre xelhu leps)
  • Meat and Potato Broth (Lire ch'ert'ofre xelhu leps)
  • Smoked Meat Goulash (Lighwpts'a libzche)
  • Meat and Noodles (Li xelhu x'inch'el)
  • Dried Sheep's Side (Dzazhe gheghwa)

Poultry and egg dishes (Jedqazimre jedich'emre qixasch'ich' shxinighwexer)[edit]

  • Chicken in Soured Cream Sauce, Jadlibja (Jedlibzche)
  • Stuffed Chicken Baked in Dough (Thevim k'wets'ighezchihawe jed)
  • Broasted Chicken (Jedla)
  • Fried Chicken with Onion (Jed ghezcha bzchin sch'elhu)
  • Boiled Chicken with Garlic (Jed gheva bzchinixw yi ghwsew)
  • Chicken and Noodles (Jedir x'inch'elim xelhu)
  • Chicken with New Potatoes (Jedisch'ere ch'ert'ofisch'ere zesch'elhu)
  • Chicken in Pepper Sauce (Jedlibzche shibzhiy ships sch'etu)
  • Chicken Fried in a Brazier (Jed teibech'e ghezchawe)
  • Chicken in Walnut Sauce (Jed de ships sch'etu)
  • Boiled Turkey (Gwegwsh gheva)
  • Stuffed Turkey (Gwegwsh ghezcha)
  • Boiled Goose (Duck) (Qaz, e babisch, gheva)
  • Goose (Duck) with Noodles (Qaz, e babisch, x'inch'elim xelhu)
  • Baked Goose (Duck) Stuffed with Rice (Qaz, e babisch, ghezcha prunzh k'wets'ilhu)
  • Pastry Straws, twiglets (Jedich'eripsch)
  • Eggs Fried in Soured Cream (Jedich'eneqiyzh)
  • Sweet Omelette (Jedich'ezchapx'e 'ef')
  • Jadichevinsh (Jedich'evinsh, Schheqwtih)

Fish dishes (Bdzezchey shxinighwexer)[edit]

  • Fried Fish (Bdzezchey ghezcha)
  • Fried Fish in Soured Cream (Bdzezchey shatech'e ghezchawe)

Dairy product dishes[edit]

  • Cheese (Q'wey)
  • Soured Cream Sauce with Cheese (Q'weyzchapx'e)
  • Hominy or Polenta (Zhemikwe)
  • Fried Cheese (Q'wey ghezcha)
  • Sour Milk (Shxw)
  • Baked Milk (She sch'eghepschtha)
  • Shkuz (Shxwz)(This kind of milk preserve has got completely out of use. It used to be prepared for winter)
  • Bajina (Bejine)
  • Kurt (Qwrt)

Flour, cereals, and haricot bean dishes[edit]

  • Lakum (Lequm)
  • Haliva Stuffed with Entrails (Helive zchenfen delhu)
  • Haliva Stuffed with Cottage Cheese (Helive q'wey lhalhe delhu)
  • Haliva Stuffed with Potato (Helive ch'ert'of delhu)
  • Haliva stuffed with Potato and Cheese (Helive ch'ert'ofre q'weyre delhu)
  • Haliva stuffed with Haricot Beans (Heliva jesh delhu)
  • Haliva Stuffed with Pears (Helive q'wzch delhu)
  • Potato and Cheese Pie (Delen ch'ert'ofre q'weyre delhu)
  • Cottage Cheese Pie (Delen q'wey lhalhe delhu)
  • Cottage Cheese and Green Onions Pie (Delen bzchin ts'inere q'wey lhalhere delhu)
  • Lapstaipkha (Lepsteipx'e)
  • Flaky Bread (Sch'aq'we zeteiwp'esch'ich')
  • Shalama (Shelame)
  • Tkhurimbey (Tx'wrimbey)
  • Unleavened Maize Bread (Nartixw chirzhin)
  • Leavened Maize Bread (Chirzhin gheteja)
  • Maize Lakum (Nartixw leqwm)
  • Unleavened Maize Bread (Nartixw mezhaje)
  • Maize Rolls (Hetiq)
  • Maize Rolls with Fat (Sche zixelh hetiq)
  • Unleavened Millet Bread (Xw chirzhin)
  • Unleavened Millet Bread (Xw mezhaje)
  • Miramisa (Miramise)
  • Hakurt, hakut (Heqwrt, heqwt)
  • Boiled Corn-cobs (Nartixwsch'e gheva)
  • Roasted Corn-cobs (Nartixwsch'e ghezcha)
  • Corn Flakes (Nartixw ghep'ench'a)
  • Maize Halama (Nartixw hel'ame)
  • Millet Halama (Xw hel'ame)
  • Kilish (Qilish)
  • Pasta (P'aste)
  • Crumbly Pasta (P'aste lhalhe)
  • Maize Pasta (Nartixw p'aste)
  • Sok (Sok)
  • Shopransy (Shopransiy)
  • Khubala (Xwbela)
  • Hantkhups, Millet Soup (Hentx'wps)
  • Haguliva, Boiled Barley (Hegwlive)
  • Ashira ('eshiri', 'eshire', 'eshri', 'eshre')
  • Khudir (X'wdir)
  • Khudirbalatsa (X'wdirbelatse)
  • Sweet Rice Pilaw (Prunzh 'ef')
  • Psihaliva, Dumplings (Psiheliva)
  • Meat Dumplings (Psihelive melil delhu)
  • Chicken Dumplings (Psihelive jedil delhu)
  • Haricot Bean Sauce (Jesh libzche)
  • Haricot Bean Soup (Jesh leps)
  • Haricot Bean Soup With Potato (Jesh leps ch'ert'of xelhu)

Potato and gourd dishes (Ch'ert'of, qeb shxinighwexer)[edit]

  • Fried Potatoes (Ch'ert'of zcherikwey)
  • New Potatoes Stewed in Soured Cream (Ch'ert'ofisch'e shatech'e


  • Potato Paste (Ch'ert'of p'aste)
  • Potato Stewed in Soured Cream or Broth (Ch'ert'ofim ships sch'etu)
  • Boiled Gourd (Qeb gheva)
  • Baked Gourd (Qeb ghezcha)
  • Gourd Sauce (Qeb ships)

Drinks and beverages[edit]

  • Kalmyk Tea (Qalmiq shey)
  • Makhsima (Maxsime)
  • Maramazey (Meremezchey)

Sweets and desserts[edit]

  • Haliwa (Heliwe) [Sweet, dessert in Arabic]
  • Marazey (Merezey)
  • Nuts with Honey (Dere fore zexelhu)
  • Water-melon Honey (X'arbiz fo)
  • Dried Pears (Q'wzch gheghwa)
  • Zacharis (Zech'eris)

See also[edit]


External links[edit]