I·ATE Food Term of The Week: Trdelnik


If you have ever visited Prague, you must have noticed at least one place where they sell the highly sweet smelling Trdelnik!

It is a traditional Bohemian sweet characterized by strips of dough rolled onto a cylinder (named trdlo) and baked over hot coals.

A baked Trdelnik is (addictive and) usually covered in mix of sugars, cinnamon and/or nuts.

It is usually sold during the winter period, and all the Christmas markets are specialized in its preparation.

Almost incredible to believe, but the truth is that a Czech grandmother wouldn’t know what Trdelnik is!

The same goes for the average Czech older than 30 who will most likely tell you that they did not know the Trdelnik at all in their childhood. This means that the Trdelnik is a very recent addition to Czech gastronomy.

In fact, even if this delicacy has become very popular in Prague markets and tourists associate its origins to the Czech Republic, it actually comes from the Moravian-Slovak border area.

More precisely, the Slovak town of Skalica claims the role of the creator.

In fact, there tis treat is called Skalicky Trdelnik and has also been attributed the European Union PGI protected status.


There are different legends about how Trdelnik was originated.

On the one hand, someone says it is a very recent creation, as the majority of eldest people have no idea of what we are talking about.

On the other hand, someone else affirms it goes back to Neolithic times, as it is related to the open fire.

Prior to bread ovens, and prior to kitchen stoves or hot plates, there was no other way to cook dough than to twist it on a stick of wood and rotate it over an open fire.

In a practical sense, this made it accessible for people who were travelling, or people staying with their cattle in the countryside. And that is the charm of it. 

In any case, Trdelnik is an incredible marketing success and tourists love it!

Today, so many versions are available in markets and fairs: indeed, you can find Trdelnik filled with whipped cream, strawberries and chocolate, ice cream and many more!

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Beyond Prague. 2022. Trdelník – The Czech Treat that Isn’t – Beyond Prague. [ONLINE] Available at: https://beyondprague.net/czechs-and-czech-culture/food-drink/trdelnik-the-czech-treat-that-isnt/. [Accessed 11 February 2022]

Cook Like Czechs. 2022. Czech Trdelnik Recipe – Cook Like Czechs. [ONLINE] Available at: https://www.cooklikeczechs.com/trdelnik/. [Accessed 11 February 2022].

Radio Prague International. 2022. The “Old Bohemian” Trdelník | Radio Prague International. [ONLINE] Available at: https://english.radio.cz/old-bohemian-trdelnik-8286412. [Accessed 11 February 2022].

written by Giulia Battisti

Giulia holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Languages for translating and interpretation and a Master’s Degree in Digital Marketing and Global Markets. She is now combining the two careers as a Communication Trainee in the Terminology Coordination Unit of the European Parliament.