"There's no better approach to find out about a nation and its way of life than to experience its cooking secrets," says Vladimir Gurbaj, proprietor of Serbian Traditional Cooking School in Belgrade neighborhood Zemun.

Flavors of Serbian cuisine
It is a saying with which he has been treading in both his personal and professional life.
"On my every trip I always try to find some time to take a local cooking class", Gurbai adds.
On his latest trip to Bangkok -for three days- he was talking, cooking and eating popular classic Thai dishes with a local instructor.
This kind of encounters motivated Gurbaj and various other businessmen in order to offer classes in Serbian cuisine to English-speaking travelers. According to Lily Pomar, a cooking teacher from Belgrade, food is a way for foreigners to see the heart of their place of visit, by learning about its traditions and flavors and making a travel through taste. Pomar, also, prefers to offer traditional food tastings for students in her classes.
 Gurbaj and Pomar both offer single or group cooking classes. Gurbaj's Serbian Traditional Cooking School meets at an open grill in a Zemun garden.
Vladimir Gurbaj-2
Crafting the perfect cevapi is part art and part science, says Serbian Traditional Cooking School proprietor Vladimir Gurbaj. Photo: Vladimir Gurbaj
"My goal for my cooking classes is to be full with information, loose and fun", Gurbaj says. "Our point of meeting is Zemun and from there we visit the shops together in order for the students to be encounter with the farmer's market. That is the point that our class starts. Unlike a school - it is kind like an evening, cooking with a friend. We prepare a decent meal and eat it together. Each student takes a booklet of recipes before leaving the class." 


Petros Stathis