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Transylvania

May 1, 2013

Come and visit Romania! That’s all I can say after our 5 day trip to Transylvania. Whilst Bucharest is a loud, busy and dusty city ( though we had great food and a lovely hostel here and yes we missed the 2nd biggest building in the world, the Parliament), Brasov, a city north of Bucharest, is a little gem. Surrounded by the Southern Carpathians, castles and fortresses it’s a great place for walking, relaxing, having great food, finding peace and enjoying the spring.
We came here to meet our friend Oana, who is a local, and met up with Joao and his friend who happen to visit Oana in Brasov at the same time. Thanks to Oana, the friendly Romanians (and the sun) we had an amazing time here with lovely walks, nice places with good coffee and delicious local wine and local food – sour soup (with sour cream, my favourite), pickled pepper or beetroot, polenta with cottage cheese (mamaliga, my other favourite), liver in white wine sauce (another favourite), goulash of course, staffed cabbage rolls, pancakes with sweet cheese, raisins and sour cream are some examples.

And yes there’s cheese! Even though not being known for cheese Romania offers a decent variety, mainly made of sheep’s milk and surprisingly using raw milk. I tasted everything I got offered from the markets and I loved it. Especially Burduf, a creamy sheep’s cheese aged and sold in a sheep’s stomach. Amazing flavour that I never had before, strong but soooo tasty. Another one is Cascaval afumat, a hard sheep’s cheese, again smoked, which they seem to do with almost every dairy and meat product here (as well as in Czech Republic and Poland).
Ach ja, not smoked but delicious is kefir and sana (similar to buttermilk) which has become our standard breakfast. Great country what else can I say but come and visit Romania.

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