View Map
Post Slideshow Image?>

Latvia

Post Slideshow Image?>

A Latvian filing cabinet made it into UNESCOs memory of the world register, it contains over 217,000 dainas (Latvian folksongs) indexed by a chap called Krišjānis Barons. For a country with a population of only 2 million (less than quarter of the population of London), that is a lot of songs. The Baltic countries do like their music and Latvia is no exception. They also like their food, with pork and potatoes, cabbage, beetroots and rye featuring heavily.

Cheese is also big news for the Latvians, with a particularly interesting type called jāņu siers flavoured with caraway seeds which has a peculiar green tinge.  I found a recipe here which I may have a go at making at some point.  It is traditionally made for the jāņi summer solstice festival where the Latvians find the highest spot around to light a fire which must be kept blazing all night long, they sing songs (of course), they jump over brooms and look for fern flowers.  It all sounds rather fun.

RECIPES (click to view full recipe)

We Listened to

AT A GLANCE

POPULATION: 2.0 million (2013 – World Bank)
CAPITAL: Riga
LANGUAGE/S: Latvian
AREA: 64,589km2

HOW DO YOU SAY?

HELLO Sveiki
PLEASE Lūdzu
THANKS Paldies
CHEERS Priekā
BON APPETIT Labu apetīti
GOODBYE Ardievas

Further Reading

Recipes (in english)
Recipes (in native language)