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The Joy of Romanian Cooking and Eating

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Carmenuka View Drop Down
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    Posted: 16 September 2010 at 11:02

Romanian food is your guide to Romania’s history, traditions and culture.Geek

The Romanian cuisine is a diverse blend of different dishes from several traditions with which it has come into contact, but it also maintains its own character.

Romanian traditional foods heavily feature meat, especially pork.

Alors... what does it make Romanian food so special? Back to history, well....and geography!

Romania is a study in contrasts. Like the Romanian climate for instance, which is icily cold in winter and fiercely hot in summer, or the Romanians who can be consumed with melancholy listening to the doina (poignant country songs of love and longing) or elevated to a passionate frenzy when dancing the hora or the calusari.

Like the powerful wind called the crivatz, which whips up the snow in the winter and drives the yellow-grey dust in the summer, the Romanian soul is alternately gay and animated or sad and despairing – but NEVER dull!

Probably it is those same fertile pastures, orchards, vineyards, and fields of grain that enticed the Roman conquerors about 100 C.E. In exchange for the grain and the gold that they took from the land, they built bridges and roads; but more important they built the beginnings of an identity and left a language and culture that is proudly preserved to this day. The strength of the Roman cultural identity can be better appreciated when one realizes that Romania was and still is almost surrounded by Slavic peoples and even counts within her own population more than a dozen ethnic groups. Talk about a Melting Pot!:)

Despite this, more than 90% of the population speak Romanian, which is one of the 5 Romance languages alongside Portuguese, Spanish, French, and Italian. Further, their homogeneity is displayed not only in their almost ‘universal’ or ‘global’ temperament and tastes but also in their religion, for the vast majority of the population are members of the Romanian Orthodox Church.

Romania had and still has a tumultuous history, as it is situated in a geographical position that made it a prime target for many invading nations. Romanian territories were occupied in turns or simoultaneously by Turks, Austro-hungarians, Russians. NONETHELESS, Romanians are a Latin people! Beer

Where else in the world would you find such a mixture? Star

The diversity of the Romanian cuisine is quite high because of this and a careful observer will notice traces of many international cuisines in the Romanian traditional cuisine.

For example, the north-eastern part of Romania, Moldavia, neighbouring Ukraine, several dishes from these neighbours found their way in the cuisine of this particular region. The southern part of the country displays its relationship with the Ottoman (Turkish) Empire, not only in the cuisine but also in the style of life, which is more relaxed than in the north or west. Dishes that are specific to Turkey, such as halva or coffee, or to Greece, such as baklava and 'musaca' (Moussaka - Greek: moussakas; Romanian: musaca; Turkish: musakka; South Slavic: мусака; Arabic: musaqqaʿa), quickly became part of the Romanian cuisine. The Western part of Romania, Transylvania, shows some influences of the German and Hungarian cuisines. Dishes are spicier here, and ingredients such as paprika are often used to season traditional Romanian meals.

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TasunkaWitko View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TasunkaWitko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 September 2010 at 12:02
Welcome, Carmenuka! It is great to see you here!
 
We are looking forward to learning what you know about Romanian cooking, and hope to be able to answer any questions you might ahve about foods of other countries.
 
Make yourself at home and look around!
 
Ron
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Hoser Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 September 2010 at 12:32
A very hearty welcome to you Carmen! It is always great to have someone else with expertise in specific cultures and their dishes. I am very much looking forward to more history of the Romanian people, and of course a few recipes!

Please look around and have fun while you are here.
Go ahead...play with your food!
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Carmenuka View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carmenuka Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 September 2010 at 13:07
Thanks for all the warm welcoming, Hoser!
I'll try and do my best to come up with useful and interesting (I hope) info about Romanian food and much more...only I have a curiosity myself, can anyone give me the American version of the pastrami?Tongue
Been to US last year and had a very nicely flavoured homemade stew with sweet potatoes and beef,  it RRRRocked, and very much reminded me of home!Clap
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TasunkaWitko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 September 2010 at 13:23
>>>I have a curiosity myself, can anyone give me the American version of the pastrami?<<<
 
carmen, you ahve come to the right place! here are four links that should give you some good reading:
 
 
 
 
 
let us know if you have any questions!
 
also, if you don't mind, i've taken the liberty of copying your post to the romanian section here at FOTW. it is so chock-full of great information pertaining to romania that we'd like to use it as one of our signature posts in that section! it should be visible both here (new member section) and there (romanian section).
 
thanks again!
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Carmenuka View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carmenuka Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 September 2010 at 14:06
wow, Dave isn't kidding at all when it comes to PASTRAMI, great help for me, and motivation, and inspiration.... now I have come up with the most interesting piece of info, here it is:
I knew there were a lot of Romanian born ppl in the US, or Romanians by origins, but who were living there for several generations, but never imagined this amount of Romanian mix when it comes to cuisine, books, winery, right there in US, they are spreaded everywhere, just take a look at the link above.
you guys may wanna go in person and try something very soon, I hope, I'm telling you it's worth the effort!....in case you decide to do that, don't forget to share with us the 'spicy' details of your deli-tripBeer
 
will come later with a genuine recipe for you all!
CaraCarmineCarmen
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 September 2010 at 14:48
Hey welcome Carmenuka! Glad you decided to join our group and I thought your initial post was exactly the kind of stuff that we love here and makes our site special. Thanks for sharing. You'll be meeting some really nice people here, and certainly enjoying their visual meals. look forward to seeing some of yours !
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Hoser Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 September 2010 at 16:29
Carmen...thanks so much for the link. Boston is only 30 minutes away for me, so I'm sure I'll be able to get to that market one of these daysBig smile
Go ahead...play with your food!
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