Rätter gräddade under peka

Rätter gräddade under peka

De flesta finsmakare anser att rätter lagade ”under lock” är toppen av gastronomi på glöd. Den så kallade peka är en tunnare eller tjockare metalloval, ofta tillverkad av gjutjärn. Peka som är av lera är särskilt uppskattad bland kännare. I kärl som man sätter under peka lägger man kött tillsammans med potatis och grönsaker för att laga den vanligaste rätten inom denna genre. Kalv-, lamm- och nötkött är då särskilt populära, men större fjäderfän är också vanliga.

Maja Danica Pečanić

Peka consists of two elements – a base that is placed on the hot fireplace, which holds the food, and a heavy lid that enables the ingredients to simultaneously cook and roast in their own juices.

The dome-shaped bell lid has a handle on top to lift it from the base, because it becomes too hot to be touched once it is heated. After positioning it over the food, the bell is covered with burning embers. The right kind of embers need to be produced to prepare food “under the bell” (or čripnja, sač or peka) above a fireplace, normally using hornbeam or beech wood. Along with the embers that heat the vessel from above, a fire smoulders from beneath the bell, which enables a uniform roast.

 

Preparing food under the bell is a roasting method that takes a lot of time, sometimes even a few hours, depending on the type and amount of meat. In that case, it requires the food to be turned over and around a few times to make sure it is equally cooked on all sides, and some wine or broth is then added around the meat to make it tender and finger-licking good. Embers need to be carefully maintained to sustain the hours-long cooking process. But it is always worth the wait, because the end result is so delicious even the most impatient guests that are gathered around the fire with a glass of fine wine won’t complain.