Thursday, August 11, 2022

Food & Drinks in Romania

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Food in Romania

Romanian cuisine is different but recognizable to most people, combining Balkan and Central European flavors, but it also has certain distinctive features. The delicious sarmale, ardei umpluţi (stuffed peppers), mămăligă (pr. muhmuhliguh, polenta), bulz (traditional roasted polenta, filled with at least two kinds of cheeses, bacon, and sour cream), friptură (steak), salată de boeuf (finely chopped cooked veggies and meat salad, usually topped with mayo and decorated with tomatoes and parsley) (the h is loud).

Other dishes include a burger bun with a slice of ham, a slice of cheese, and a layer of French fries, ciorbă de burtă (white sour tripe soup), ciorbă rădăuțeană (quite similar to ciorbă de burtă, but with chicken instead of tripe), ciorbă țărănească (a red sour soup similar to borş but with the be Cow tongue, sheep brain (Easter), caviar, chicken and pig liver, pickled green tomatoes, and pickled watermelon are among the unusual local delicacies.

Pască (a chocolate or cheese pie made exclusively after Easter), sărățele (salty sticks), pandișpan (literally meaning Spanish bread; a cake filled with sour cherries), and cozonac are traditional sweets (a special cake bread baked for Christmas or Easter). Bread (without butter) is served with nearly every meal, and dill is often used as a seasoning. Garlic is ubiquitous, both raw and in specific sauces (the typical sauce is mujdei, which is composed of garlic, olive oil, and spices), as do onions.

There is generally good street food, such as covrigi (hot pretzels), langoşi (hot dough filled with cheese and various other optional seasonings like garlic), gogoşi (donut-like dough coated with fine sugar), mici (spicy meat patties in the shape of sausages), and excellent pastries (many with names like merdenele, dobrogene, poale-n brâu, ardelenești), thin pancakes filled with anything fr Kebab and shawarma (șaorma) are popular dishes offered in a variety of small businesses.

Popular Romanian snacks that are widely accessible in stores include pufulești (cheap and tasty corn-based snacks) and sunflower seeds, although traditional snacks like as potato chips and different nuts are also popular. Halva, halviță, rahat (Turkish Lokum – note that “rahat” is also commonly used as a euphemism for feces, so you may hear Romanians refer to rahat a lot when they are angry, but they do not actually refer to anything commonly considered edible), and colivă, a boiled wheat dish commonly used in religious mourning rituals, are common sweets.

Even while Romanian cuisine is comparable to that of Western Europe, most restaurants in Romania, particularly in more rural regions, exclusively offer Romanian cuisine. There is a large range of foreign food available, particularly in Bucharest, with a focus on Mediterranean, Chinese, and French cuisine. There are also a plethora of foreign fast food restaurants. The intriguing thing about them is that they are only nominally cheaper than restaurants, with the cuisine being of world level but considerably lower in quality than that provided in restaurants. As a result, if possible, go for eateries, which provide a far more genuine and high-quality experience at comparable costs.

If they ask for mâncare de post, vegetarians and vegans may easily discover a delicious meal that is appropriate for them (food suitable for religious fasting). Because the majority of Romanians are Eastern Orthodox Christians, fasting entails eliminating all animal products from their diet (meat, dairy products or eggs). Despite the fact that Lent only lasts a few months out of the year, fasting food is available all year. Yet, most Romanians are unfamiliar with vegetarianism or veganism; however, such “mâncare de post” may be seen all year; some Romanians fast outside of Lent, on most Wednesdays and Fridays, as part of their orthodox religion.

Drinks in Romania

Wine

Romania has a lengthy wine-making history (more than 2000 years are documented); in fact, Romania was the 12th largest wine producer in the world in 2005, with the finest wineries being Murfatlar, Cotnari, Dragasani, Bohotin, and others. Its quality is excellent, and the price is reasonable: a bottle of Romanian wine should cost between 10 and 30 lei. Many individuals in tourist regions produce their own wine and sell it straight to tourists. It is typically offered in glass bottles of approximately 75 ml wherever you wish to purchase it. Many monasteries make and sell their own wine. Most winemakers, even monks, will let you to sample it beforehand, but others may not.

Beer

Romania, like other nations with a significant Latin heritage, has a long and dispersed history of making beer, although today beer is extremely ubiquitous (even more so than wine) and very inexpensive in comparison to other countries. Avoid beers in PET plastic containers and instead go for beers in glass bottles or cans. Most multinational brands are brewed under license in Romania, thus they taste very different than in Western Europe. Some licensed beers are still excellent, such as Heineken, Pilsner Urquell, and Peroni. Simply by glancing at the pricing, you can tell if a beer was produced in Romania or elsewhere and subsequently imported: foreign beers are considerably more costly than Romanian beers (a Corona, for example, may be 12 lei, while a Timisoreana, Ursus, or Bergenbier of a full 1/2 litre capacity would be 2-4 lei). Some of the ordinary lagers available are very unpleasant, but there are some excellent brewers. Ursus makes two tasty beers: its lager and Ursus Black, a black beer (bere neagră) that is robust, fruity, and sweet, comparable to a dark Czech beer. Silva brews harsh beers, with both its Silva original pils and Silva dark leaving a bitter sensation in your tongue. Bergenbier and Timisoreana are both excellent. All other lager beers, such as Gambrinus, Bucegi, and Postavaru, are insipid (in the opinion of certain customers). Ciuc is a very good and reasonably priced pilsner that is currently owned by Heineken. A bottle of beer will cost about 2-3 lei in a store and twice that in a bar.

Spirits

Palinca is the strongest alcohol and is traditional to Transylvania, followed by ţuica (a type of brandy made from plums – for the better quality, traditional version – but alternatively from apricots, wine-making leftovers, or basically anything else – an urban legend even claims you can brew a certain type of winter jacket (pufoaică) to ţuică, but this is ra The strength of ţuica is between 40 and 50 percent. Pitești produces the finest ţuica, which is prepared from plums. Strong alcohol is reasonably priced, with a bottle of vodka costing between 10 and 50 lei. The 75 percent blueberry and sour cherry palinca (palincă întoarsă de cireşe negre), commonly known as vişinată, is a Transylvanian specialty, although it is typically preserved by locals for festivities and may be difficult to obtain.

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