Ciorba de pui

Ciorba de pui is a traditional Romanian soup that can’t be missed in any household, it’s sour and sweet, hot and velvety, but delicate and simple at the same time. The soup is most usually served before a meal, but it can also replace a full lunch because it contains the right mix of vegetables and meat. In the cold winter this soup is ideal because it gives warmth and delivers energy.

INGREDIENTS

1/2 chicken

3 onions

3 tomatoes

2 carrots

1 small cup of rice

½ cabbage

2potatoes

2 teaspoons of salt and pepper

2 eggs and flour for noodles (Taitei)

Sour cream

   Directions

  1. Cover chicken with 2-3 liters of water in a large pot; add salt and bring to a boil. When foam starts to form; remove as much as possible; lower the heat and boil gently for 15 to 20 minutes.

  2. After 20 minutes of chicken cooking add a rice potatoes and vegetables: carrots, onion. Cut all these ingredients into small pieces.

  3. Meanwhile, when our soup is cooked, prepare Traditional Romanian noodles (Taitei) In the bowl, we beat the egg with the salt of salt and gradually add the flour. Make a dough that does not stick. One egg enters approx. 5-6 tablespoons of flour. Move the dough on the table using the kitchen roller and sprinkle the table with flour. The next step is to make a roll of dough and then cut it with a sharp knife that creates a noodle.

  4. 10 minutes before the final cooking, add the noodles, (Taitei) cabbage, sliced tomatoes and sour cream into the soup.

  5. let cook for about 10 minutes on a mild flame to make all the flavors and aromas come together. Serve with fresh bread and wine.

Zacuscă

Zacuscă  is a fresh, baked or roasted vegetable dish found in several Balkan countries. According to the Romanian tradition, after the autumn harvest, some families prepare zacuscă and preserve it in sterilized jars for the winter. The eggplant recipe is the most popular and one of the most loved, but there are other varieties, such as green or dried beans, and mushrooms. This dish is optimal to combine with fresh bread and basil.

INGREDIENTS

4 kg Eggplants

3 kg Red bell peppers

3 kg Tomatoes

3 kg Carrots

3 kg Onions

1 l Oil Black pepper

Salt

   Directions

  1. You normally have to grill the vegetables but if you don’t have the possibility or don’t feel like doing it, then just place the stuff in the oven and let cook until the skin blackens and the vegetables are soft.

  2. Take everything out of the oven, let the vegetables cool, then peel carefully and place everything into a big sieve. Let drain well. Put separately ach of the four types of vegetables in a food processor. And place each in a separate bowl when you are finished.

  3. Chop the onions (a good way is do it through a food processor), and together with oil put them into a large pot. And cook the onions until translucent.

  4. The next step is adding the red bell peppers, carrots, eggplants, tomatoes and salt. Cook everything on a very low flame for about 4 hours stirring from time to time.

  5. Sterilize your jars while your vegetables are cooking. You should place the jars and their lids in a big pan filled with water. Bring the water to a boil and cook the jars and the lids for about 5 minutes. Take the jars and lids out and let them drain on a clean kitchen towel. After filling the jars of zacuscă let everything boil again around 20-25 minutes in a pot of water.

  6. Biological processes inside the jars require time, it is important that the vegetables are stored in a dark place before consumption. (cellar or balcony in winter)

Romanian Mămăligă

Mămăligă is a porridge made out of yellow maize flour. It’s a traditional and popular meal in Romania. Since mămăliga can be used as an alternative for bread in many Romanian and Moldovan dishes, there are quite a few which are either based on mămăligă, or include it as an ingredient or side dish. Arguably, the most popular of them is sarmale (a type of cabbage roll) with mămăligă. Neighboring countries have their own versions of mămăligă, but, as far as we know, nowhere except in Romania it is combined with butter, cheese, and sour cream.

INGREDIENTS

1 cup of cornmeal

2 cups of water

1 teaspoon salt

butter

sour cream

cheese

   Directions

  1. In a pot, any old regular pot you’ve got in your kitchen, of any make, model, material or condition, add the water. Get said water to boil.

  2.  After water is boiling, reduce heat to the lowest possible setting on your stove that’s still “on” and producing heat and add 1 teaspoon of salt. Begin pouring in corn meal slowly. Don’t just dump it in there but pour it in slowly. Meanwhile keep stirring. Stir, add some more, stir, add some more, stir, add some more until all the corn meal is in the water.

  3. Using a special wooden stick (făcăleţ) rather than a wooden spoon and pressing against the pot walls when stirring will help eliminate clumps. Alternatively, you can try using the tail of the spoon.

  4. Continue stirring for about 5 minutes until the cornmeal changes its consistency and thickens.

  5. Serve it right out of the pot. Use good quality feta cheese (telemea), preferably sheep’s milk cheese. Use a fork to grind the cheese before mixing. Place some mămăliga onto the serving plate. Mix it with plenty of butter, according to taste. Next, add plenty of cheese and mix it well. Finally, add plenty of sour cream to cover the entire surface of mămăliga.