By Regina Landor
Mounds of red peppers are suddenly on display everywhere we go in our neighborhood in Belgrade: in the market, on the side of the road, and in the trunks of people’s cars. Sweet red peppers abound in this region, and it is a tradition – a very, very longstanding one – to roast the peppers in the fall and make ajvar, a sweet red pepper relish. Lots and lots of ajvar is made. People make jars of it to store for the winter months, in order to have some all year. As we drive through the winding roads of Koshutniak Park behind our home, we even see people roasting the peppers over an open grill, a large pile of peppers next to them.
I am invited to an ajvar- making day at the home of my new friend, Indira, a Bosnian woman who is married to an American diplomat.