Monday, November 17, 2014

Banitsa Recipe

Banitsa is a Bulgarian dish that many are not aware of, yet Banitsa is one of the tastiest dishes you could ever taste and is easy to make too!

Today I will tell you how you can make this great Banitsa dish for yourself!

Ingredients needed:

200 grams of Filo pastry
150 grams of Sirene cheese (Feta can be used instead)
Olive oil
50 ml sparking water
3 eggs

Cooking instructions:

1)    Take out a deep tray and rub oil on the bottom and sides.

2)    Place a sheet of filo on the bottom

3)    Crumble sirene over the sheet of filo

4)    Place another sheet of filo over the crumbled sirene

5)    Drizzle a small amount of oil over the filo sheet

6)    Repeat steps 2 to five until all sheets and sirene is used

7)    Whisk eggs and sparking water together

8)    Cut your banitsa into size of pieces you want

9)    Pour egg mix over the top of banitsa and move the tray around to allow the mix to seep into where you have just made the cuts for your slices

10)    Place in pre-heated over at 200 c for 40 to 45 minutes (or until golden brown on top)

Now you will have a wonderful dish to enjoy.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Bulgarian Population Decline

Bulgaria has seen its population decline heavily since the fall of communism in 1989. This change in population is not due to the fall of communism of course, but more in line with the integration of the country into Europe and the freedom for the people to move elsewhere.

In 1989 the reported population was just over 9 million, by 2001 however the population had dropped to around 8.4 million. In the 2011 census, the figure shows another significant drop to around 7.3 million.

The change in population causing it decline is the movement of younger people looking to find their fortunes and a different way of life overseas. At first Italy and Germany were the places to travel too, but now younger Bulgarians have found their home across Europe and also in America.

The Bulgarian economy and low salary when compared to other nations in Europe means the lure of higher wages that allow for a brighter future has seen movement happen. Bulgarians are very proud of their country and their culture, however many have become settled in their new countries of residence and therefore decided to stay in the new host nations.

Did you know that the population of Bulgaria today is actually lower than the reported population in 1950? This is true and Bulgaria is the only country in the world where the population is lower now than it was back then!

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Bulgaria Average Living Cost

Many thinking of moving to Bulgaria, or just with a general interest in the country, will wonder what the average living cost on a monthly basis may be.

Whilst we have looked and have a general understanding on the living cost, this detail was take in November 2014 so inflation and time does need to be taken into account if your looking at these Bulgarian average living costs in the future.

We have not included rent or mortgage amounts in the following and it also doesn't include running a vehicle either.

With this in mind, lets look at the overall Bulgarian average living costs by month:

Electricity - 120 leva (takes into account seasonal usage in Winter for heating)
Water - 40 leva
TV - 12.49 leva (Premium package from Blizoo)
Mobile phone - 20 leva
Apartment block (service charge cleaning) - 10 leva
Food - 250 leva

TOTAL - 452.49 levs

This equates to £185.09 / $294.51 / €235.13

Adding the rent/mortgage to this will have a major impact, but if your looking to move to Bulgaria and have enough to do so without the need of rent or mortgage then the above shows how it can be a low cost living!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Energy Sweets Imported from Bulgaria

Over a decade ago the kids and adults of today were always on the lookout for the fizzy sweets that reminded them of fizzy drinks, these included the likes of the fizzy cola bottles we all enjoyed. Times have changed and everyone is on the lookout for something else, this something else being energy drinks and energy sweets.

Energy drinks have been around for a while and have become big business. Energy sweets are more of a niche area where you cannot readily get your hands on these sweets containing Caffeine, Guarana & Taurine to give you a kick.

Many have asked why the energy sweet market is not bulging given that it offers a massive potential in the same way as the energy drink market. The answer to this could be down to the manufacturers, or it could be the buyers.

The manufacturers may not want to spend money trying to develop these new and innovative sweets. They will also be mindful of regulations on the sweets themselves for the quantity of caffeine and other products they can use in the ingredients.

The buyers on the other hand may not realise what the general purchaser is looking for and because of this they are missing a trick with energy sweets.

In the UK there are a few energy dextrose tabs available, but no real energy sweets other than those imported from elsewhere. Because of this a new and interesting market is starting to take shape as these sweets become sought after products by the general public.

The question to ask is why are people interested in sweets with an energy kick?

The kick of an energy drink is something people use to keep themselves awake and alert during work shift patterns, or simply as an alternative to coffee. The problem with energy drinks is the fact that they cannot easily be stored and carried around if you are on the move.

Once open, energy drinks really need to be fully consumed so you can have the short term benefits, but not sustained longer term alertness they offer.

sweets offering an energy kick are a more subtle and easy to carry option; you can carry sweets in your pocket or store them in the car with ease. Also energy sweets can be taken in small quantities when you feel the need so you can sustain your alertness without overloading yourself on caffeine like you would by drinking multiple can of energy drinks (which is not advisable).

Overall there is a growing market for caffeine sweets and other varieties offering energy kicks and it is a market that is currently not largely saturated so it offers businesses a huge potential in revenue growth.

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Apriltsi: A piece of the real Bulgaria

Apriltsi is located in the centre of Bulgaria. Positioned in a corridor of mountains it boasts the cleanest air in Europe. It is naturally renewed up to 4 times a day. Apriltsi is also a historical centre of Bulgarian culture. Many traditional craftsmen still practice their skills for pottery, wood carving, weaving and knitting.

JMB Active organises cultural and nature activities in Apriltsi, Bulgaria. We offer stimulating holidays for travellers who want a genuine experience of a new destination. Our activities are community based. We operate as a social enterprise that helps maintain local cultural traditions and preserve the unique natural environment of the Central Balkan.

We organise cultural activities such as pottery, wood carving, pyrography, weaving, knitting, iconography, Bulgarian Horo dancing. These activities bring our guests in direct contact with the best teachers and craftsmen. It helps support local artists in the region and develop awareness for Bulgarian culture. And for our guests these activities are a great way to switch off from the stress of life in the big city.

We also organise nature activities such as horse riding, hunting, fishing, hiking and mountain biking.

Many of our guests are professionals who want to escape the pressure of work but don’t want to sit on a beach all day. We host families, school children and corporate groups for team building events. Everybody loves to discover first-hand what it takes to produce a ceramic jug or to carve a wooden plate.

Most of all it's a great way to discover the real Bulgaria!

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Sofia - Bulgarias capital city

Sofia sits at the foot of Massif Vitosha moutain and is the capital city of Bulgaria.

Sofia has a population of just over 1.2 million and is one of the oldest capital cities in Europe as it dates back to the 8th century BC. Like the rest of Bulgaria, Sofia is steeped in history, which can be seen at various places throughout the city.

The rivers Iskar, Perlovska and Vladayska cut through the city at various points and Sofia is also known for the many mineral and thermal springs.

To other Bulgarians people who live in Sofia and it's surrounding area are known as Shoppe.

While the population is in a decline in Bulgaria, the population of Sofia is growing due to people from the poorer regions coming to the capital looking for work.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

The Madara Horseman

Rising from the plains below the Madara plateau is a sight to behold. The Madara plateau has been a sacred place since early man and still stands as a place of interest due to the huge mural of a horseman that is carved high into te cliff face.

Due to the test of time the Madara horseman has become badly eroded but when you stand at the foot of the cliff it is an awesome sight to behold. We know the Madara horseman is at least 1300 years old but the exact date still remains a mystery.

The Madara horseman does carry one clue to it's age by the faded Greek writing found next to it which commemorates the military victory by Khan Tervel (Son of the great Bulgarian Khan Asparuh) in 705AD.

Does this monument celebrate the triumph of the Proto-Bulgarians...the ancestors of todays Bulgarians?