The Best of 2015
2015 was the second year of having this little blog space. Almost Bananas transitioned from mostly about food with a little bit of Slovakia thrown in, to focusing more on Slovakia with some weird healthy food thrown in.
I’ve really enjoyed the connections that the blog has brought. Each time somebody leaves a comment or writes me an email, I feel honoured that it was important enough for them to take the time to do so. Thank you to all of you who read, comment, and write emails – you’re why I’m here!
This year, I’ve also started writing at two other places. Holistic Squid is where you will find more healthy food posts by me, including liver drinks and sourdough recipes. The Slovak Spectator is a Slovak newspaper in English and, thus far, I have an opinion piece once a month on matters related to Slovakia.
Also read: The Best of 2014.
First up, the top ten posts written this year with the most views:
10. Jaterničky – Rice and Offal Slovak Sausages: a general how to and video on making this zabíjačka (pig butchering) specialty.
9. How to Eat Brains: Slovak Mozgy: another zabíjačka specialty, a few people wrote in to say this was a childhood favourite.
8. Slovak Goulash Cook-off: one of my favourite photos is in this post, because I love the character of it. Can you guess which one it is?
7. A Slovak Party: lots and lots and lots of food: the amount of food you need to prepare when hosting a party in Slovakia is mind boggling.
6. Christmas Cream of Lentil Soup with Prunes: the recipe our family makes for Christmas Eve dinner.
5. Zabíjačka: A Slovak Pig Butchering: the set-up and processing of how Slovaks butcher a pig in the backyard, complete with shots of slivovica. This post also has some of my favourite photos for atmosphere.
4. Chicken Paprikaš: this delicious dish is a quickie to prepare.
3. Bone Broth Sunday Soup: this is a staple in Slovak households for Sundays or other celebratory meals.
2. A Slovak Christmas: traditions that we do on Christmas Eve, and others share their traditions from other parts of the country in the comments. I’ve updated it with a playlist of Slovak Christmas carols.
1. Lendak, a mix of old and new: one of my favourite places in Slovakia, where many traditions are still kept alive, right alongside modernity.
A few other of my favourites of 2015:
Chata M.R. Štefánika: chalet in the Nizke Tatry – a trip we took in the fall for our 10th wedding anniversary. The photo of the kitchen is again a favourite for atmosphere.
Draft Horse Competition: it was amazing to watch the teamwork and handling skill with these beautiful animals. Log pulls, wagon slaloms, and more.
Traditions: finding the balance: quite a few of my favourite photos (ok, I have a lot of them) are in here. Getting ready for a folklore concert, finding the light in an old shed, and gorgeous fall colours in the Male Karpaty.
Winter Hike on McKirdy Mt in Valemount: couldn’t get much better than a winter’s saunter in the mountains of my childhood in Canada with my mom and a pair of moccasins.
A few more favourite photos not included in the above links:
From Hody: a modern take on a medieval festival
From August 2015 vacation photos
From July 2015 photos
Posts that actually got the most views were all written last year (and they are all food posts, which is why there are so many food blogs – because there is a lot more traffic).
10. Super Easy Sauerkraut : sauerkraut is not only a staple in Slovak cuisine, it’s amazingly good for you. Instructions on how to make it without too much work.
9. Nuts in Honey: a classic Slovak gift that is both pretty, tasty, and can be made in a jiffy.
8. Beak (White) Kimchi: a non-spicy version of the food that defines the Korean kitchen, full of probiotic fermented goodness.
7. Fermented Red Onion: ask me if I like to ferment veggies. Seriously though, fermenting onions totally mellows them for easy consumption.
6. 3 Ingredient Amazeballs: this quick no-bake cookie is for those who need a sweet but healthy treat (Paleo, AIP).
5. Fermented Cauliflower: one of the best introductions to fermented veggies because of the mild taste, my kids love it.
4. Zucchini Pizza Frittata: A delicious way to use up all those zucchini in the summer (GAPS, Paleo).
3. Segedinsky Gulash: Creamy Sauerkraut Stew: comfort food at its best.
2. 25+ Ways to Use Sauerkraut: If you are like me, you get all excited about the benefits of sauerkraut…and then wonder how on earth to use it.
1. Best Beef Liver Pate: when I put this recipe up, I wondered if anybody would even look at it. It turns out, this post gets far and away more views than any other post. I have a little secret ingredient that negates the beef taste and so that the pate is both delicious and amazingly healthy.
And that’s it for a wrap up of 2015.
What is your favourite post?
Jan 13, 2016 @ 22:08:35
So many great posts! FYI just wrote a blog on fermented pickles, I mentioned you with a link back to Super Easy Sauerkraut.
Jan 14, 2016 @ 15:48:20
Feb 17, 2016 @ 05:22:45
Great that you can share of these great posts with us. I met a family in Zimbabwe that the husband was from Czechoslovakia and the wife from Brazil. He was a chemist and worked with a beer company there. It seems to be a great country. Thank you!
Feb 18, 2016 @ 17:59:34
Thank you! Sounds like an international family, like us. Were you traveling there?