The cuisine of Albania is Mediterranean, influenced by many including Italian and Turkish cooking. Albanian cuisine is characterized by the use of spices such as black pepper and Mediterranean herbs such as oregano, mint, basil, rosemary and more in cooking meat and fish, but also chilli pepper and garlic.
Vegetables are used in almost every dish. Usually, Albanian farmers grow every vegetable present in the Mediterranean region and sell them at the local farmers' market. Vegetables are bought fresh by locals at the farmers' market early in the morning, which is open every day.
Meat is used heavily in dishes, including the intestines and head among other parts which are considered a delicacy. Dairy products are integral part of the cuisine usually accompanied with ever present bread and alcoholic beverages such as Raki. Seafood specialities are also common in the coastal cities such as Durrës, Vlorë, Shkoder, Lezhe and Sarandë.
Wheat Bread (Bukë gruri) or corn bread (Bukë misri) are ever-present on the Albanian table. Hence the expression for "going to eat a meal" (Albanian: për të ngrënë bukë) can be literally translated as "going to eat bread."
Harapash, polenta with the intestines of lamb, butter, cheese and corn flour
Paçe - common throughout the country and it is traditionally popular in Albania. Paçe is made with a sheep's, pig's or any cattle's head, boiled until meat comes off easily. It is then stewed with garlic, onion, black pepper, and vinegar. Sometimes a little flour is added to thicken the stew. It makes a hot and hearty winter stew.
Bakllasarëm. It is also called Mantia, but it is not the dumpling form of the Turkish Manti.
Byrek — Albanian vegetable pie; it can also have feta cheese, spinach, cabbage, tomatoes, or meat; it's a layered pie made with filo pastry. Another version of the fillings is served as a filling for "pite" or "pita".
Bakllasarëm — A traditional food prepared in Kosovo and Albania: it's layered pie also known as "pite" or "pita" (Byrek) without anything inside, which is covered with yogurt and garlic, and then heated again. It is eaten for lunch.
Flia — A traditional food prepared in Kosovo and Albania.
Baklava is prepared on large trays and cut into a variety of shapes
Patisseries are in every Albanian city. The most common desserts in Albania are made throughout the Balkans: