Wednesday, February 18, 2009

My therapist

Kyle became a "Fan of Liutenitsa" on Facebook, which reminded me to stop by the International Market here in State College and see if they had any. Of course, they did. While I was at it, I got some Bulgarian cheese as well.

The owner of the store is this really cute Asian lady who speaks broken English and has the most sunny disposition. She looked at my jar of liutenitsa, then at my box of cheese, then at me and said, You are feeling a little bit homesick today, aren't you? I sell Bulgarian honey too, you know.

She then told me that her job is to make international students in State College happy. When they are homesick, they all come to me, she said. I'm their therapist.

She is mine, for sure.


  1. That's one of the sweetest stories I have ever heard!

  2. Where is it? I'll have to check it out next time I'm up there.

  3. I love this woman by proxy! I first had liutenitsa in State College at the house of a couple of geography professor. They were an American-Bulgarian couple too. Greg Knight is still there (and an expert in Bulgarian geography) but I don't know about his wife. It'd be fun if you ran into them!

    I looked at the wikipedia page for liutenitsa because you linked it. It turns out it makes claims that are logically impossible. "Ljutenica may be slightly hotter (spicier) than the other popular relish Ajvar (Bulgarian tradition Lyutenitsa is less hot than Ajvar)." I want to fix it, but don't know which one is right. Someone help! Please! Someone on the internet is wrong!

  4. Moni:

    You should definitely check it out. it's at 328 S Allen St. Close to the Public Library.

    I was confused by the wikipedia page too. I think that ajvar is spicier than liutenitsa. We make "spicy" liutenitsa in Bulgaria... but that's more of an exception than the norm. Also, ajvar has eggplant in it and liutenitsa has tomato. So, they are very similar but DEFINITELY not the same thing. I hope that the rest of the Bulgarians here can help us figure this one out. ;)

    I LOVED the xkcd cartoon. It made me laugh because it's sort of what I do these days. ;)

  5. I'm an American who has been living in Bulgaria now for almost two years and I must say that Liutenitsa is quite possibly the best thing in the world.