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Balkan Bites brings a warm bite of Southeast European cuisine to the International Restaurant and Foodservice Show

Alida Malushi, Head Chef (left) , Ariana Malushi, CEO (right). Photo credit: Balkan BItes

Balkan Bites, a female and family owned food company, will debut their wholesale line of frozen, ready-to-bake Southeast European comfort foods at the International Restaurant and Foodservice Show at the Javits Center in New York City (Booth 1370 in the New Exhibitor Pavilion). The company will feature its full line of Burek: a portable, stuffed phyllo swirl that’s a daily staple in the Balkans.

Flaky on the outside and oozing with goodness on the inside, the Bureks are available for wholesale purchase in five savory flavors: Spinach & Cheese, Ricotta & Feta Cheese, Mushroom & Goat Cheese, Potato & Onion, and Beef & Onion. Each filling is wrapped in a delicate phyllo dough made from scratch using unbleached flour, extra virgin olive oil, and real butter. All of the products are sold frozen, ready-to-bake and never contain any additives or preservatives. Simply pop them into an oven for about 30 minutes and serve warm for anyone to enjoy anytime, anywhere as an appetizer, meal, or snack. Though great on its own, it can be easily paired with a salad, coffee, tea, hard-boiled egg, pickle, sour cream or garlic-yogurt sauce for extra satisfaction.

“We started as a pop-up vendor with Urbanspace last year, but due to demand and positive feedback, we wanted to make our Bureks more accessible through foodservice channels so that anyone can enjoy it year-round,” said Ariana Malushi, Balkan Bites co-founder and CEO. “Our company values are based on bringing a piece of Balkan culture and hospitality to New Yorkers through our products. When it comes to making our Bureks, we can’t cut any corners—it’s all about sharing that authentic, quality taste we grew up with.”

A Bite of History 
The Balkans is a geographic area that lies on the southeastern edge of Europe. Known for its diverse cultures, traditions, and ethnicities, it is the shared love of food, like the Burek, that brings people together. Originally introduced by the nomadic Turks of Central Asia, the flaky phyllo swirl travelled across borders for centuries, even making its way into the Ottoman imperial household. Due to its diverse background, it has many names—Borek, Bourekas, Pita, Banista and it also has many faces, coming in different shapes such as a triangle, swirl, cigar, or round pie. As the Burek continues to break boundaries, the cultural significance of this everyday staple lives on in the streets of the Balkans to this day.

About Balkan Bites
It all started when Ariana approached her aunt Alida with a simple idea—to teach her how to make traditional Albanian recipes in honor of her late grandmother, Magbule. On Sundays, they found solace in baking together, reminiscing about her while bringing her recipes to life.
Soon enough, they were debuting their Bureks at local markets in NYC, quickly gaining momentum as they expanded their presence. In December 2019, Balkan Bites was listed by Eater as one of the best food vendors to visit at the Columbus Circle Holiday Market and sold out at the World’s Fare outdoor market in Queens. Their ‘unBurekable’ bond grows stronger every day with a shared passion to make Balkan cuisine more accessible to all.