Most of us have heard of Dubrovnik, that stunning walled city on the southern Croatian coastline, but has anyone heard of Ston? I know I didn’t, until recently.
This small town – along with its mini-me offshoot of Mali Ston – are barely an hours drive from Dubrovnik. They’re known for a few things – the fortified medieval wall that surrounds most of the old town centres, the mussel and oyster farms in the gulf and the salt that has been produced there since Roman times. Salt that so happens to be the purest in the Mediterranean – or so they say.
The defensive walls were built to protect the salt pans; a resource that contributed to Dubrovnik’s wealth. I do love a bit of trivia now and again.
Another gastronomic delight that comes out of Ston is Stonska torta, or Stonski makaruli; a cake that has sweet and savoury elements that you either like or are challenged to get your palate around.
A thin, unsweetened pastry envelops a tangle of long macaroni, firmly compressed and mixed with nuts, lemon zest, sugar, chocolate and butter – all bound with beaten egg.
Once it’s on the serving plate it gets doused with sugar – some even go as far as garnishing it with berries and sugar-coated almonds.
Something that wouldn’t go amiss here is poppy seeds. I reckon they’d bring a nice bit of crunch to the otherwise soft and mildly flavoured innards.
*Non-stick Cake Pan and Cooling Rack supplied by International Bakeware