In a recent article by Altin Raxhimi for Jeta në Kosovë Magazine, we have had the opportunity to explore the history and current status of many of the Has region Kosovars in diaspora. While there are various reasons Kosovars have emigrated, what is common for many of the Hasi people is the activity they are engaged in, and that is baking delicious bread.
The bread baking tradition in the Hasi region has begun roughly around the time when the Ottoman Empire spread throughout the Balkans. “There is a specific method and spice mixture that baking bread requires, and it appears that the Hasi people have mastered it” says Sokol Canhasi, a bakery owner in Tirana, Albania. Further away, Mr. Besim Muhadri claims that Hungary has experienced an invasion of Kosovar bakeries. Similar invasion like stories are said to be for Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Slovenia and even the far land of Australia.
The Hasi community migratory patterns are closely tied with the political and economic conditions of the time. Right after the second world war, people from the Hasi community have initially moved into baking bread for the Yugoslav centrally operated bread factories. Later in the 60’s, with Yugoslavia experimenting with a more open economic system, the Kosovars from Has started exploring other regions of the Balkans and operating their own bakeries. Based on an account from a prominent baker, Mr. Besim Muhadri, at the heyday of bread bakeries, Hasi Kosovars were operating a total of 800 to 1000 bakeries throughout Yugoslavia.
A second great migration occurred with the start of the Yugoslav wars throughout the 90’s. Simultaneously, Albania dragged itself out of communism and thus opened up its borders to private businesses. The Kosovar bakeries decided to move their businesses elsewhere: Tirana, Budapest, Vienna,Sydney etc. Thus, now generating an international network of Kosovar operated bakeries worldwide.
A recent success story occurred at the Hungarian daily Heti Valasz, where 400 of the 1400 bakeries in Hungary were operated by Hasi Kosovars. The secret is on the process of making, as Mr. Cekaj explains, the bread the Hasi make takes more time, and is done in an old fashion way, with no industrial additives, thus making it the best choice in the market.
Complete Article could be found at gazetajnk.com