Raznici and Cevapcici: a traditional Croatian grill

Every time I say I'm from Croatia, people tell me: "A-ha, Ražniči and Ćevapčići!"

It almost annoyed me that Croatia was only remembered for grilled meat. But then, in the end, is there something more ancient, or rather prehistoric, to cook grilled meat? Here you get the recipes!


In the end, remembering my childhood, the grill was done almost twice a week. When the meat is good, maybe there is no better way to cook it. 


Ćevapi or Ćevapčići are small meatballs of elongated shape. Originally, they were made with beef meat and a small part of lamb's meat. My grandfather, who had some pigs, only used pork, and they were really delicious.

They are spiced with pepper, some also add finely chopped garlic.


Sometimes I think Ćevapčići were just made to force us kids to eat meat. 

We did not like the meat at all, but with Cevapcici it was different: we were competing for those who could eat more, so much so that I believe adults would never even eat one. For them there were hot meatballs, Pljeskavice, skewers and roast chicken.


Pljeskavice are spicy meatballs, beef and pork, mixed with onion and paprika.


Ražniči  are meat skewers. Almost always, pork is used, alternating with onions, peppers and bacon.

I used pork fillet and some chopsticks.


And then, in my town, there were no restaurants, and there was only one place where you could eat. He was a private man who had opened the courtyard of his home, and every evening he prepared grilled meat. It was a beautiful place with a special and festive atmosphere. His Cevapi were delicious, it seems he used beef meat and a special fat, perhaps lamb fat.


His Ćevapčići were served on an elongated plate, where in half of the dish there was only chopped onion. The wife of this person spent all evening slicing onions.


Tonight I tried to repeat the feel of that courtyard in my home.


I know, it seems almost silly to say, but the secret of a good grilling is good meat. And you can use the one you like, pork, beef or lamb, in the proportions you prefer. 

Here meat no longer has any flavor, wherever you buy it. And the best thing about the grill is the vegetables of your garden.

This bruschetta is not typical Croatian, but it gives me a small Italian digression, since my origin is also half Italian.


Try to grill small skewers of small tomatoes. Grate the bread, sprinkle it with a clove of garlic and seasoned with olive oil and basil.


My grandmother was full of basil plants. She put them on the windowsill, against the mosquitoes, she said.

She has never used basil in the kitchen.


Cherry tomatoes grow spontaneously in my garden and are perfect for the grill. Along with zucchini, potatoes, apples, peppers and onions.

Peppers, however, go private with their skin and seasoned with olive oil and garlic.


In the grills of one time, it was not used to grilling vegetables. Sometimes thin potato chips.

At the end of the evening you can not miss Slivovitz.


Ćevapi or Ćevapčići

In these Cevapi, today you put a bit of everything. Some people put flour, bread crumbs, carbonated water, sour cream, glutamate (Vegeta) and I do not know what else. I will give you the recipe of how these things once did: good meat and simple spices.


400 g ground beef (shoulder or thigh)

a little lamb or pork fat (optional)

1/2 teaspoon of pepper


1 finely chopped garlic clove (optional)




Mix the ingredients with your hands and form small 6-8 cm stretched meatballs.

Quickly cook on the grill. Do not cook too much, they must be soft.

Serve with chopped onion.





400 g pork (fillet, steak)

50 g bacon

2 pepper

100 g small onions




Cut the meat into pieces not larger than 4 cm. Pour the ingredients into the skewers, alternating onions, bacon, pepper and meat. Cook on the grill without staining the meat too much.

Salt after cooking.




400 g mixed minced meat (beef and pork)

1 onion

1 teaspoon of sweet paprika

1 teaspoon of spicy paprika

1 finely chopped garlic clove (optional)

1 spicy chili (optional)




Mix the ingredients with your hands and form small 6-8 cm meatballs.

Quickly cook on the grill. Do not cook too much, they must be soft.

Scrivi commento

Commenti: 2
  • #1

    Sadhya (mercoledì, 11 ottobre 2017 12:26)

    Another great post. An evening enjoying your food and company would be so enjoyable.

    I like very much the little humorous things that you put into your descriptions - the wife who spent all evening chopping onions in the kitchen. Your grandmother, full of basil, which she never used, but it kept the mosquitoes away! It is these little details that make your writing come alive.

  • #2

    Vania Zemunic (venerdì, 03 novembre 2017 14:49)

    I'm so glad you enjoy it! This gives me new energy to continue this blog. Thank you Sadhya.
    I would like to organize a Croatian dinner one day. it would be fun!