The Republic of Azerbaijan is found in the South Caucasus region of Eurasia at the crossroads of Eastern Europe and Western Asia. It is surrounded by the Caspian Sea to the east, Russia to the north, Georgia to the northwest, Armenia to the west and Iran to the south. The country declared its full independence in 1918 and was the first secular democratic Muslim-majority state. The country is known as one of the six independent Turkic states and has diplomatic relations with 158 countries. The country does not declare an official region and all major political forces are a secularist. The wonders of this country are evidently seen through their national dishes and how they promote themselves worldwide. Despite being modernized and strongly influenced, they stick to their strong tradition wholeheartedly and give importance to the welfare of its citizens especially the young generation to preserve their interesting unique culture.
1. The National Dish Delightful FillingPancakes light up everyone’s breakfast and so does the Azerbaijan pancakes. It is a traditional food of the country from its regional influences. It has one of a kind filling that surely will make everyone ask for more. For that nutritious meal, it is stuffed with meat and vegetables like pumpkin, scallions, sorrel, parsley, green garlic, dill, and spinach before enclosing. The flipping and toasting way of cooking this national dish cooked on a large iron skillet makes it savory and tickles everyone’s taste buds. It’s one of the country’s favorite family meals. Often served with yogurt or cream sauce as an alternative to syrup.
2. Alluring WinesA national dish wouldn’t be complete without drinks. The country is known as one of the top producers for wine specifically in the region of Caspian Sea. The importation of the grape wine-produced has been on the rise since 2005. Some of the local varieties of grapes for wine-producing include; White Shani, Ganja Pink, Madrasa, Black Shani Misgali, Agdam, Tebrizi, Marandi and many more. There are an estimated 10 wineries and vineyards in the country and much of its produce is distributed to Russian and other European markets. For Azerbaijan’s, wine is the second popular alcoholic beverage for any occasion and any gathering such as birthdays, graduations, weddings, and others.
3. Wedding Gatherings as its FinestOne of the most significant and solemn family traditions of the country is the Azerbaijan wedding. It is a reflection of their ancient rituals and cultural traditions. The wedding needs significant materials cost and often last for a long period of time. A perfect and formal wedding begins with the consent of the bride’s parents and a detailed negotiation is required for the wedding that lasts three to seven days. Women are also expected to have weave carpets during their younger years and may use this as a dowry for her own wedding. For newly married men, their mothers are expected to wove large rugs for their new family. Now, formal weddings have significantly changed. A wedding celebration has been shortened to at least one day.
4. Marvelous HorsesThe favorable geographical and climatic conditions of Azerbaijan is perfect for the breeding of their national animal called Karabakh Horse. It is the national heritage and pride of the country and one of the oldest breeds in the whole world. Karabakh Horse speed is achieved with admirable ease, intelligence and endurance making them perfect transportation for the mountainous rugged trails of the country. Another horse is Daliboz Horse from the regions of Qazakh, Agstafa, and Tovuz. It is described as a clean, short head and broad forehead and a robbed massive body with long nack and loin and often used as for riding horses. Some of the famous horses in the country worth discovering are the Quba horse and Shirvan horse.
5. Preserved and Lovely WeavingAzerbaijan is known as the famous center of carpet weaving.It is a family tradition that has been transferred through practice and carries a great cultural significance. These carpets or Azerbaijani rug is used as home decors such as the covering of floors, designing interior walls, laid in sofas, chairs, and beds. These traditional handmade textiles came with various sizes with unique patterns that characterizes the Ajerbaihan’s culture. The country has opened its Carpet Museum for everyone to browse all sorts of carpets and carpet weaving live demonstrations. The Law on the Protection and Development of Carpet Art of Azerbaijan was created to preserve, study, promote and develop these lovely weaving traditions.
6. Crocheting; A National SkillCrocheting is being taught to all young girls of Azerbaijan. It only not prepares them for the traditional competition called Seven Beauties Tournament, but it also prepares them for their future. Young girls are taught how to creatively create crochet and knit stockings, wardrobes, and others. These will help them for social entrepreneurship and to bring income to their families. These young girls are also expected to pass these essential skills to the younger generation to preserve and to promote.