Slovenia

By Gretchen Stalnaker

Welcome

In this Smore, you will see and learn all about the country of Slovenia. From geography to traditional holidays and festivals, this Smore will tell you all.

Geography & Travel

Slovenia is divided into eight different regions based on the division of Slovenia into the four Habsburg crown lands. With Slovenia being on the coast, the climate ranges from mild to hot in the summer and cold winters. The biggest city in Slovenia is Ljubljana, which happens to be the capital, with a population of 274,826 people. Maribor is next with a population of 94,809 people. The lowest elevation in Slovenia is by the Adriatic Sea measuring at 0 meters. The highest elevation is the peak Triglav, located in the Julian Alps, measuring at 2,864 meters. If you were to travel to Slovenia from the Dallas Fort Worth area, the best way to get there would be by flying.

Government and Foriegn Policy

Slovenia has a Unitary Parliamentary Constitutional Republic as their form of government. The president of Slovenia is Borut Pahor, and the prime minister is Alenka Bratusek. The law making body of Slovenia is called the Parliament that divides into the upper house and the lower house. Slovenia has an unlimited government. Currently, Slovenia has no controversies with other countries. Slovenia joined the United Nations in 1992, but is not a member of NATO.

Econonmy

The currency in Slovenia is named a Euro. One United States dollar converts to .72 Euros. In Slovenia, the main items that are exported and imported are cars, packaged medications, refined petroleum, vehicle parts and electricity. The GDP per capita in Slovenia is 45.47 billion United States dollars, while the GDP per capita in the United States is 15.68 trillion United States dollars. Compared to the United States, Slovenia is poor, but compared to other small countries, Slovenia is quite wealthy. Slovenia has a higher GDP than Slovakia and Croatia, which are small countries in Europe as well. Slovenia seems to be right in the middle of poor and wealthy because it isn't an extremely poor country, but it also isn't the wealthiest either. The economy in Slovenia seems to be striving very well.

Social and Ethnic Groups

The ethnicity in Slovenia consists of Slovenes who takes up 83% of Slovenia's population. Serbs take up 2%, along with Croats. 12% of the population is unspecified, and 1% of the population belongs to Bosniaks. The school systems in Slovenia ranks 12th best in the world, and 4th best in the European Union. In Slovenia you start primary school when you are six years old. You go to school for a total of nine and a half months, and have three different periods divided into three years. They have primary, secondary and tertiary periods throughout their school life, each one teaching them different things. More than 98% of the primary classes graduates to go on off to secondary, where only 84% of the secondary classes graduate to the tertiary level, which is colleges and universities.

Religion, Language and Flag

The main religion practiced in Slovenia is Catholic, measuring at 57.8%. Many people however also don't practice a certain religion, or doesn't practice a well-known religion. 92% of the population speak Slovene, which is the official language of Slovenia. The flag uses the colors red, white and blue to show the Slavic colors, which were adopted to Slavic nations around the middle of the 19th century. They were influenced by the Russian flag, because it was an independent Slavic country at the time. The colors now stand for Slavic unity and independence that can be shown on Slavic nation flags. The coat of arms on the flag shows three yellow stars and the Triglav peak which is the highest point in Slovenia. The stars represent the Slovenian independence, and the blue wavy lines represent rivers flowing into the ocean.

Traditional Holidays and Festivals

To start off the holiday season in Slovenia is New Year's Day, celebrated on January 1st. Preseren Day comes next on February 8th, which celebrates the anniversary of a Slovenian poet France Preseren, and the celebration of Slovenian culture. April 20th of course is Easter for the people that follow that religion, and April 27th is the Day of Uprising Against Occupation, which marks the establishment in 1941 of the Liberation Front to fight the German, Italian, Hungarian, and Croatian occupation of Slovenia. May 1st and 2nd is the work-free labor day that has been celebrated since 1949. Whit Sunday is celebrated fifty days after Easter, so the date varies each year.

Traditional Clothing and Food

The traditional clothing in Slovenia includes dresses and headpieces for women, and boots and hats for men. The women usually have puffy white shirts, big flowing skirts, tights, and boots, along with a headpiece. The men have white shirts, shorts or pants, suspenders, hats and boots. The food in Slovenia ranges, but consists of meats and pastries. A Slovenian doughnut is called a krofi.


Krofi Recipe:

Ingredients:

Two ounces of compressed yeast or three packages of dry yeast.

1/4 cup of water

1 teaspoon of sugar

2 tablespoons of flour

1 cup of milk

1 cup of half and half cream

6 tablespoons of butter

6 large eggs

3/4 cup of sugar

1 teaspoon of salt

1 cup of sour cream

1/2 lemon rind and juice

9 1/2 cups of flour


Preparation:

Crumble yeast in water; stir in sugar and 2 tablespoons flour. Set aside to rise, about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, heat milk, half and half, butter and margerine; cool to lukewarm. In large bowl, beat eggs, sugar, salt and sour cream together. Add milk mixture to egg mixture. Stir in yeast, lemon rind, juice and 2 cups flour. Beat until smooth. Mix in enough remaining flour until dough is easy to handle, about 7 cups. Place on floured board and knead about 10 minutes to a soft non-sticking dough, adding more remaining flour on board as needed. Place in greased bowl, turn to grease top. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 1-1/2 to 2 hours.

On lightly floured cloth, place dough and stretch (no rolling) to 1/2-inch thickness. Cut rounds (there are no holes in krofe) with the top of a glass or with a doughnut cutter (removing inner cutting circle). Place rounds on floured cloth; cover with a cloth to rise about 30 minutes or until light. Use scraps of dough to make additional rounds. Fry in deep fat (3 inches of oil) until golden brown on both sides, turning once. Place on brown paper to absorb fat. Dust with powdered sugar when krofe are cooled.

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