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  • 1. RECIPES BOOK ROMANIAN TRADITIONAL FOOD 1
  • 2. INTRODUCTION • • • One of the aims of our project “Having culture as a kite, we travel European skies” is to carry out activities that deal with our traditional food. This recipe book is one of the final products of the partnership. Reading this book will give you a clear picture of what food can tell you about the history, customs and traditions of our countries. This is not a simple cook book, it’s also an incursion through our history, ancient customs and traditions because for us, the Romanians, all the great traditional celebrations are linked to food rituals. In most of the regions of our country, there is specific traditional food, whose secrets were handed down from generation to generation. We are trying to offer to our partners in this Comenius project and to you all, some of the secrets of cooking traditional Romanian food as well as some of our secret ingredients. This way you will see that our cooking tradition is based on the old peasant cuisine and that cooking only in those ancient pots and using wood fire is the best way to obtain delicious food. So, accept our invitation to this adventurous and exciting journey through the Romanian cuisine and taste some of our best recipes with us! 2
  • 3. MAIN COURSES 3
  • 4. HOT MAIZE-PORRIDGE BALL FILLED WITH CHEESE • • INTRODUCTION Winter and cold came and what could be better than a steaming hot maize-porridge ball filled with cheese? We’ve been dreaming of it since summer! An ancient Romanian shepherds’ food, reminding us that we were once a country of peasants and shepherds. • • • • • • • • • • In order to do it, use the shepherd’s maize pudding. This is also an authentic Romanian food. INGREDIENTS FOR SHEPHERD’S MAIZE PUDDING 1 kilo of maize flour 3 liters of water 1 spoon of salt INSTRUCTIONS FOR MAKING SHEPHERD’S MAIZE PUDDING Put the water and the salt in a cast-iron kettle in order to boil, scatter a handful of maize above the water; When the water starts boiling, add the maize all of a sudden: it will form a kind of little hill washed by the hot waves; Now, there is enough time for the maize of flour to boil slowly, for about an hour, in order for the maize flour to swell up and to get very hot; After an hour has passed, mix it with force, for a long time (the shepherds do it the same way: one of them holds tight the cast-iron kettle, the other one mixes the pot stick); If the maize pudding got solid and the pot stick cannot be moved anymore, the maize pudding is pushed towards the bottom of the cast-iron kettle and it is leveled. Then, put the cast-iron kettle again on a strong fire just for a little time, in order for the composition to unstuck from the bottom of the cast-iron kettle. (there will be some vapors, the maize pudding will start hissing and growing). Overthrow the maize pudding on a trencher (faceplate), it is a perfect hemisphere. 4
  • 5. NOW YOU CAN MAKE HOT MAIZE-PORRIDGE BALL FILLED WITH CHEESE YOU NEED: SHEPHERD’S MAIZE PUDDING AND FAT SALTED CHEESE • • • • • • The pieces of maize pudding will be filled with fat salted cheese. The pieces of maize pudding must be stretched on a board and greased with oil. After rolling the maize pudding, the pieces will look like some dumplings, that will have no more than a half of kilo, including the 150 grams of cheese for each piece The new obtained pieces must not have morsels of cheese mixed with the maize pudding. The maize pudding must cover all the cheese. The pieces will be introduced in live coals that must not be very hot. The hot maizeporridge ball filled with cheese must be baked almost in hot ash. The hot maize-porridge ball filled with cheese is ready when it has a crust. If the cheese is too salted, it can be served with yoghurt, sour cream, pressed cow cheese, feta cheese or soft cow cheese. 5
  • 6. FORCEMEAT ROLLS OF CABBAGE WITH COARSELY GROUND MAIZE • INTRODUCTION Try a festive holiday atmosphere with our traditional recipe of cabbage rolls. Christmas and New Year’s Eve dinners have a special significance for everyone. We, the Romanians, cannot even think of our winter holidays without the "home-made" cabbage rolls, like our grandmothers used to cook. These special, healing gems of pork, wrapped in a robe of sour cabbage are a treat anytime, but on Christmas and on New Year’s Eve are great! When we are spoiled and our kitchens smell like heaven! • • • • • • • • • • • • INGREDIENTS 500 grams of coarsely ground maize 500 grams of pig brisket 2 onions 1 spoon of paprika 1 bunch of savory 1 pickled cabbage 500 grams of smoked-dried pig neck 1 sausage 50 milliliters of lard (or 100 milliliters of oil) 200 grams of mushrooms Salt, pepper to taste 1 liter of cabbage pickle (or sour bran and water) 6
  • 7. INSTRUCTIONS • • • • • • • • The coarsely ground maize is made of little pieces of maize, which once in Romania, replaced the rice. The coarsely ground maize can be obtained at home: the maize is smashed in a vessel. Wash the coarsely ground maize in several cold waters. The cut onion is fried on slow fire. After few minutes, add the coarsely ground maize, the minced meat – the pig brisket, the smokeddried pig neck, the mushrooms, the paprika, the salt, the pepper, the savory (well pounded). Wash gently the cabbage leaves with warm water, dry them. A part of the cabbage, the middle, is cut very small. After a quarter of an hour of staying on fire (while you mix continually the ingredients), the composition is taken from the fire and the oil is drained. The lard or the oil is drained in the pot in which the forcemeat rolls of cabbage will be boiled. Fill the leaves of cabbage with meat and coarsely ground maize, not too much because the coarsely ground maize will swell more than the rice. Roll the leaves or fold them in four. 7
  • 8. • • • • • • On the bottom of the pot in which you pour oil, put, first of all, a layer of cabbage cut very small, then pieces of pig brisket, smoked-dried pig neck and sausage, and cabbage and so on, until you fill the pot. The last layer must be of cabbage. Scatter paprika and savory on the last layer. Fill the pot with cabbage pickle mixed with water. Cover the pot and boil the ingredients in an oven on a slow fire. In order to be perfect, the forcemeat rolls of cabbage must be boiled very slowly for about 4-5 hours. They are served with sour cream and red pepper. 8
  • 9. THE STEW OF THE OUTLAWS • INTRODUCTION The Dacian harsh winters forced us to eat more meat, so what could we do if not eat this delicious stew. This is heavy food, the foundation of peasant cuisine in Gorj, a mountainous place with thick and mysterious forests with the millenary tradition of shepherds bringing their sheep up and down the mountains. The best stew of the outlaws is made on the stove, on the wood fire, in a peasant pot. • INGREDIENTS • 500 g mushrooms • 500 g pork • 200 g smoked bacon • 2 tablespoons butter • 1 cup of clear soup • 1 tablespoon flour • 500 g veal (beef) • 2 kidneys any kind you have • 2 tablespoons lard • 1 cup sour cream • 3 onions • salt 9
  • 10. INSTRUCTIONS • • • Meat, kidneys, onions are cut thin slices with great care. • Place onion in butter and lard on low heat, covered • When softened, add the veal (beef) for about fifteen minutes • Then add the pork, for another quarter of hour • Loosen the flour in a little hot water •Next the kidneys and flour, for 5 minutes • Add water or clear soup and leave to boil for a half an hour • Cut thin slices of bacon, put them in another frying pan. • Then take care of the mushrooms and cut them into thin slices • When the bacon has browned and left some gravy, put the mushrooms in, for 10 minutes. Then add the mushrooms and the bacon to the stew, add some salt, and let it boil for 15 minutes. Take the stew off the heat, place the cream, and mix it a bit longer, so this way it will be good, with polenta and pickles. 10
  • 11. DESSERT 11
  • 12. ROMANIAN WALNUT PANETTONE, SPONGE CAKE OR SWEET BREAD INTRODUCTION • This is a light and sweet Romanian favorite. It is traditionally served at Christmas and Easter and a few other celebrations. The Romanians have a huge variety of recipes for sponge cake. Each region of our country has a historic recipe, just as every family has one, handed down from generation to generation. In terms of form, this cake may be straight or round, simple or braided. In terms of filling, we distinguish cakes with no filling or filled with walnuts, poppy seeds, dried fruit, or mixed. Easter sponge cake is traditionally filled with cheese (so-called cheese sponge cake). In Moldovia there are specific round and tall cakes (called “old women”), with no filling, whose composition contains up to 20 eggs, butter, lemon peels and / or oranges and raisins. In Transylvania they prepare especially the cakes with poppy seeds. • INGREDIENTS • 1.200 kg of fine flour • 1 cup of honey • 200 g raisins • 2 cups of milk • 50 g yeast • 2 sachets of vanilla sugar • 1 teaspoon of salt • 500 g of nuts • 15 eggs • 2 cups of butter + 50 g to grease the tray • 400 g sugar • lemon peel • 1 teaspoon of rum essence 12
  • 13. INSTRUCTIONS • The milk is mixed with sugar and allowed to warm up, but only for a little while , on the cooker. • Put the butter in a warm place, to melt • Separate the whites and the yolks of the eggs; beat the egg whites really well;mix the egg yolks with a little sugar. • Sift the flour on the battlefield(in a bowl). • Loosen the yeast in a little warm milk. • Place the milk and the eggs and start the brutal war of kneading. • After a while, the dough starts to bind, so add the butter, the rum essence,the raisins, the vanilla and the lemon peel. • The battle of kneading continues a quarter of an hour, and then the dough rests in the warm kitchen. • Chop the nuts and mix them with honey. 13
  • 14. • • • After an hour, the dough grew enough, so we divide it in trays and we stretch it, piece by piece. Sprinkle the nuts on the sheets of dough, as fits, roll. • Grease the trays with butter and coat with flour, place the cakes and leave them to rise. • Brush the cakes with egg yolks and place them in the oven to brown. • Place a teaspoon of honey with a little water to warm up. • When the cakes have browned, brush them with scented fluid honey. Christmas or Easter can start and especially end again, and again, and again with our Romanian sponge cakes. 14
  • 15. - LITTLE LORD’S CLOTH DIAPERS or THE SWEET CLOTH DIAPERS OF JESUS, THE HOLY INFANT CAKES WITH JULFA • • INTRODUCTION   Ritual or festive, pelincile or cakes with julfa are as old as Romania. - Romanian tradition surrounding Christmas, attesting piety,Little Lord's cloth diapers, cake with Julfa are different names of a cake that is prepared especially in rural areas, on Christmas Eve. The recipe varies slightly from region to region of the country, most are similar and have the same ritual meaning: the pious awaiting of Child Jesus. Pious women of old have probably felt the need to do something special on Christmas Eve when everybody hears carolers everywhere saying that Mary, the Lord’s Mother "Has no diapers, / Norclothes to put on, / The Holy Virgin, for the Holy Son "Then, symbolically, this cake, which is made to be eaten as the only food in the house that day, but also to be given away, is called Little Lord’s diapers, having the shape of thinner diapers. In Moldova, the preparation is called cake with Julfa (Julfa the composition of hemp seed). 15
  • 16. INSTRUCTIONS • Dough: • 500 g flour  • 1 teaspoon salt • 1 cup hot water • Mix all and knead well, then beat until the dough gets tired . The obtained dough is left to rest for an hour. Break small pieces of dough and, with a rolling pin, stretch quite thin sheets, round-shaped, which are baked on the stove or in a pan (preferably thick as not to burn) on both sides. It is good to be prepared the day before. They are kept covered with a towel, and on Christmas Eve, you have to soak with syrup. The syrup is made from warm water slightly sweetened with honey or sugar, plus essences and flavors. 16
  • 17. • Filling: • 100 g honey • 300 g Crushed nuts  • other spices: cinnamon, rum Put on a round tray each dipped patty. Over each round sheet add the crushed nut mixture with honey or sugar to taste. Place several layers of dipped patties or sheets, alternating with sweetened nut filling until you make a kind of cake (may have ten layers). Allow an hour or two to soak in syrup and then cut into squares or diamonds, as desired. In Bărăgan, the filling is made of boiled wheat mixed with honey or sugar and flavors, without nuts. 17
  • 18. OPEN-TOPPED FLAT PIE • INTRODUCTION Open-topped flat pies are so good that it’s impossible not to lick your fingers after you eat them! They are the pies of our childhood! • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • INGREDIENTS DOUGH 500 grams of flour 50 grams of sugar 15 grams of yeast 3 eggs 500 milliliters of milk 50 grams of butter (in order to grease the baking tin and the faceplates) 200 grams of butter Salt (as much as it is necessary) The yeast is put in a jug with warm water, then it is mixed with a spoon of flour and a tea spoon of sugar; leave it to rise for half an hour. Separate the yellow yolks of the eggs. On the flour that remained pour the yeast, the warm milk, the yellow yolks of the eggs, the salt and the sugar; knead for a half an hour. Then, add the warm melted butter, little by little. Leave it to rise, covered, 1 or 2 hours. 18
  • 19. THE COMPOSITION • • • • • • • • 500 grams of cheese (Cheese mixed with salt) 2 eggs Mix the cheese with the eggs After the dough has risen, roll it and cut it in pieces with a dimension of a small apple. Grease the faceplate with butter Put each piece of dough on the faceplate and fill it with a spoon of cheese. Put the dough above the cheese and stick them; leave them there for half an hour. Grease a baking tin with butter, put the pie, smear them with the egg white and put them in an oven, on a moderate fire, for about half an hour. 19
  • 20. This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This publication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein. 20