#stayhome and cook! 7 Moldovan appetizers to try while on quarantine

Hi there! Staying home these days? Unfortunately you already know the difference between quarantine, isolation and social distancing? Or you don’t?

If you don’t, read this article: COVID-19: Understanding Quarantine, Isolation and Social Distancing in a Pandemic.

Did you already read it? Take you time. I can wait it.

If you’re sweating daily in your kitchen, just to feed your family with good food, it’s probably easy to make a family menu for 14 days social distancing. If you just love cooking, sometimes you also need a source for cooking inspiration. But if you’are not easy going with cooking, you’re probably little stressed. Let me suggest you my Top 7 Moldovan appetizers. Home made food, healthy, good and clean. You can have them for breakfast, lunch or dinner. After 7 days repeat the list randomly.

Fermented cabbage

Fermented food! This is what you need when there is a virus around the corner. Start fermenting and keep your gut healthy. You’ll have enough days to home-fementing.

Remove the outer leaves off the cabbage. Finely shred the cabbage with a knife or with a special shredder. Wash, peel and grate the carrots. Toss the shredded cabbage with the grated carrot; season with salt. For more flavor, add some dill seeds. I also add fresh cranberries. Place the mix into a 3-litre jar; leaving some space for the juice that will be released during
fermentation. Cover the jar with a plastic lid and let it sit in a warm place for 2-3 days. Each day, you should press the cabbage to release the bubbles formed during fermentation.

Fermented adjica

Choose oblong peppers (gogoșari), not too juicy tomatoes and cut them
into quarters. Wash the peppers, de-seed, and slice them. Do the same with the flat pimento peppers. De-seed the chilies, avoiding any skin contact. Use only red colored vegetables, to give the sauce an intense red hue. Clean and wash the garlic. Once you have prepared all the vegetables, pass them through the mincer. You can also use the food processor. In that way, you will obtain a more homogeneous paste. That is why my mother prefers to use the mechanic mincer, to better preserve the texture of the
vegetables. Pour the sauce in a pan. Season with salt and sugar, and let it ferment at room temperature for 3-4 days. Stir the sauce daily to remove the oxygen formed during fermentation. On the 5th day stir, add garlic and some chilies (depends on how spicy you want it). Pour the sauce into glass jars and seal hermetically with metal lids. Store the jars in the cellar or fridge.

Fasolița – The Moldovan bean humus


Wash the beans and let them soak in hot water for a couple of hours. Add a pinch of salt and a few bay leaves and cook the beans in simmering water. Choose white beans for this recipe. When the beans are ready, set aside to cool. Pass the cooled beans and a few garlic cloves through the food-mill/mincer or mash them by hand, but be aware that the hand–mashed bean dip will not be as smooth as that made with the food-mill/mincer.
Grate the pickled cucumbers and drain well. Place the grated pickles on top
of the dip. Sauté finely chopped onions. Season with salt and paprika. Add the sautéed onion on top of the pickles.

Spicy beet root with nuts

Wash the beetroots and cook them in boiling water with a pinch of salt and sugar, for about 45 minutes. When done, drain the water and leave to cool. After the beetroots have cooled down, peel and grate them. Add some minced garlic cloves and top with minced walnuts. If the walnuts are not dry enough, place them in the oven for 10 minutes. Finally, make a mayonnaise or add yogurt, mix well and adjust the seasoning.

Mother-in -law’s tongue – Spicy aubergine rolls

Wash the eggplants, remove the stems and cut them lengthwise into slices
of 1 cm thick. Season each eggplant slice with salt and let it rest, on a plate, for about 15 minutes. The slices will release a dark, bitter juice that should be drained.Fry the eggplant slices in oil over medium heat until golden on both sides.
In a bowl mix the grated cheese, finely chopped garlic and
minced walnuts. For a more creamy texture, add 1-2 tablespoons of mayonnaise. Mix well and season with salt and pepper.
Spread one spoon of filling on one side of each eggplant slice. Roll it to enclose the filling. Proceed in the same way with each slice. Arrange the rolls on a serving plate and top with parsley.

Zuchini pancakes

Finely grate the zucchini and sprinkle over some salt. Drain well after 1 h. Add the eggs, kefir, flour, chopped garlic and season with salt. Mix everything. Fry the pancakes over a high heat, on both sides. Transfer to a platter lined with paper towels to absorb the excess oil. Serve with yoghurt or kefir.

Spicy Cheese Balls


Grate 250 grams of cheese. Mix the 250 g of shredded cheese, butter, crushed garlic and mayonnaise in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Using your palms, make balls out of the cheese, about the size of a
nut, then dip them in the finely grated cheese. Serve with fresh vegetables or marinated gogoșari peppers and fresh herbs.

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