Chisinau restaurants

FullSizeRenderpentru versiunea in limba romana va rog faceti scroll 🙂

For months we have been living in Chisinau, Moldova Republic, and, because one of my greatest passions is to experience new food treats, obviously :), I tried as many restaurants as I could. Unfortunately, total disappointment. I do not understand why, though sometimes beautifully presented, dishes are not tasty, at least not more than bland. And that’s after I tried and tried to like them! :)We found however some exceptions, which I want to share with you, so that if you arrive in Chisinau you will not go through the same disappointment as me. ;)1. In the first place, in my book, is Gastrobar, a small restaurant,  which is smoke – free, therefore I convince pretty difficult my husband, who smokes like a Turk …. 🙂 to go. But the food is sensational, trust me, a selection of middle – eastern influenced food but not only. I borrowed some photos of my favorite dishes from the Gastro Bar Facebook account.Crostini with roasted peppers, pine nuts and spices seasoned to taste perfectly :crostini cu ardei copti

 

Pork marinated in coffee that is delicious, maybe one of the best pork specialties that I have ever tasted. Do try!
muschi porc cu cafea

If you add the chocolate cake  with ice cream- which photo I couldn’t find- but it is truly delicious, and a red Moldovan wine  that staff will warmly recommend to you, you will thank me! I hope, at least, because I was really impressed by this restaurant. Most importantly, is the only place I found flexibility which is a rarity in Chisinau (the girlfriend was with  the first time did not want to eat anything specific from the menu, and they made a custom dish just for her) and warm hospitality, which, again, is pretty rare here, unfortunately …
2. Kozlovna – is one of the few pubs in Chisinau because, again unfortunately, pub- culture is pretty non-existent. Nevertheless, at the Kozlovna can find good beer on draft, Kozel and some crispy and tasty chicken schithzel. Also I can recommend the homemade potato-chips  with garlic sauce and a tasty strudel and I guess you are set.
snitel Kozlovzna

3. Room Cafe

Moldovans are more sushi- oriented than the Romanians, meaning that one can find these delicious rolls pretty often in Chisinau, and not necessarily only in Asian restaurants. The Rooms Cafe, which is a restaurant on several levels, each with a different specific, namely in the Asia room, we ate the best sushi in Chisinau. Noodles are not bad, either. If you go, make sure to order Shrimp Tempura Sushi, which is de-li-cious! :) They also have a Junior Room, where you can leave your child, for a relaxing dinner.

4. La Placinte – we already know the brand La Placinte which came with a few restaurants in Romania, but here in Chisinau are much more. I like their pies, especially the one with cascaval and invirtita with cherries . From them I also love the pancakes with chicken. That’s it for now, but I will return to this subject. 😉

take care! XO

 

 FullSizeRenderDe cateva luni suntem in Chisinau, si, cum una dintre pasiunile mele cele mai mari e sa experimentez feluri noi de mancare, am incercat cat mai multe restaurante.  Din pacate, dezamagire totala. Nu inteleg din ce motiv, desi uneori frumos prezentate, mancarurile nu au gust, cel putin nu unul mai mult decat fad. Asta in conditiile in care chiar am incercat si am vrut sa-mi placa! 🙂

Am gasit totusi niste exceptii, pe care as vrea sa vi le impartasesc, ca, daca ajungeti in Chisinau sa nu treceti prin aceleasi dez- amagiri ca mine. 😉

Pe primul loc, in my book , este Gastrobar, un restaurant mic, in care nu se fumeaza, therefore il conving destul de greu pe sotul meu, care fumeaza ca un….turc :), sa mearga. Insa mancarea este senzationala, trust me, o selectie cu influente middle – eastern dar nu numai. Am preluat cateva fotografii cu felurile mele preferate de pe contul de Facebook al Gastro Bar.

Crostini cu ardei copti , care au un gust si condimente perfect asezonate:

 

crostini cu ardei copti

Muschiulet de porc marinat in cafea, care este delicios, poate printre cele mai bune specialitati de porc pe care le-am gustat vreodata. Do try!

muschi porc cu cafea

Daca adaugati ca desert prajitura de ciocolata cu inghetata a carei foto nu am gasit-o dar este truly delicious, si un vin rosu moldovenesc pe care personalul vi-l recomanda cu caldura, o sa-mi multumiti! Sper, cel putin, pentru ca eu am fost cu adevarat impresionata de acest restaurant. Cel mai important, este singurul loc in care am gasit o flexibilitate care in Chisinau este o raritate (prietena cu care am fost prima data nu dorea sa manance nimic anume din meniu, si i-au facut un fel de mancare personalizat) si o ospitalitate calda, ceea ce, din nou, este cam rar aici, unfortunately…

2. Kozlovna – este printre putinele pub-uri din  Chisinau pentru ca, again unfortunately, pub- culture-ul e cam non-existent. Nevertheless, la Kozlovna puteti gasi bere buna la draft, Kozel, si niste snitele crocante  si gustoase. Va mai pot recomanda cips-uri homemade cu sos de usturoi si un strudel care e chiar gustos.

snitel Kozlovzna

3. Room Cafe

Moldovenii sunt mult mai sushi- oriented decat romanii, asta insemnand ca frecventa cu care puteti gasi asa ceva este destul de mare in Chisinau, si nu neaparat numai in restaurante cu specific asiatic. La Rooms cafe, care e un restaurant pe mai multe nivele, therefore “rooms” fiecare avand alt specific, mai exact la Asia room, am mancat cel mai bun sushi din Chisinau. Nici noodles nu sunt de lepadat. Daca mergeti, make sure sa comandati Tempura Shrimp sushi, care este de-li-cios! 🙂 p.s. Au si Junior Room, unde va puteti lasa copilul, ca sa puteti petrece timpul mai relaxant.

4. La Placinte  – cunoastem deja brand-ul La Placinte care a venit cu cateva restaurante si in Romania, dar aici in Chisinau sunt nenumarate. Placintele lor mie imi plac, mai ales cea cu cascaval si invartita cu visine. De la ei eu mai ador clatitele cu carne de pui.

Cam atat,deocamdata, dar voi mai reveni la acest subiect. 😉

take care! XO

Bulgur pilaf cu legume – Sebzeli bulgur pilavi

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Sau varianta la propriu, cu bulgur, a vorbei ” stricam orzul pe gaste” 🙂

Bulgurul este o specie de grau decorticat spart care credeam ca este total necunoscut in Romania. Dar, asa cum am aflat in timpul unei calatorii la tara, se pare ca, si mai grav, este cunoscut ca o solutie buna pentru hranirea… pasarilor. (din categoria, suntem saraci dar fancy :)). Sotul meu, inca rade cand le povesteste conationalilor lui turci cum romanii n-au habar de acest minunat ingredient si cei care au il desconsidera total. Eu sper totusi ca o sa-i mai dam o sansa.

O sa vi-l prezint mai in detaliu intr-un post viitor – imediat ce o sa cumpar si cealalta varianta, ince bulgur, ca sa le putem fotografia si compara .

Azi, din seria mancare turceasca,  vreau impartasesc cu voi reteta uneia dintre mancarurile de baza in Turcia, bulgurul cu legume, care in este gatita on daily basis in majoritatea restaurantelor turcesti ca si garnitura alaturi de pirinc pilav. Eu o numesc, (daca va ajunge pe meniul din casele voastre o sa intelegeti)  mancarea pe care o faci daca ai frigiderul aproape gol, doar cu vreo 2-3 biete legume care sufera de singuratate.

Ingrediente:

  • bulgur – cel cu bob mare – 2 cani
  • 2 ardei –  unul rosu si unul verde
  • 1 ceapa
  • 1 morcov
  • naut fiert in prealabil sau din conserva – o cana
  • mazare – eu am folosit congelata dar puteti folosi proaspata – o cana
  • ulei de masline – 5 linguri
  • apa fierbinte
  • pasta de rosii passata – 3 linguri
  • pasta de ardei – eu am folosit iute dar puteti folosi si dulce in functie de gusturi – 1 lingura
  • sare de mare
  • piper negru proaspat macinat
  • menta uscata/ patrunjel proaspat – pentru presarat deasupra

Incepeti cu calitul cepei, dupa care adaugati morcovul si ardeiul. Lasati-le cam 5 minute pana se inmoaie, dupa care adaugati pasta de tomate si pasta de ardei. Dupa alte 5 minute, in care e bine sa amestecati destul de des, adaugati nautul si bulgurul (spalat bine in prealabil). Toata amestecatura trebuie sa ramana cam 10 minute sa se prajeasca/ innabuse, deoarece exact aceasta operatiune da gust mancarii, trust me! 😉 Amestecati destul de des, pentru ca bulgurul are talentul de a se lipi. Urmatoarea etapa este adaugarea apei fierbinti. Nivelul apei e bine sa depaseasca cam cu 1 -2 cm cel al amestecului mai sus pomenit. Mai amestecarti o data, ca sa convingeti bulgurul de tot sa nu se lipeasca, si acoperiti cu un capac. De obicei cam 20 de minute sunt necesare ca sa fiarba, dar verificati pentru ca mai pot fi variatii, nu mari dar..da. :). Consistenta bulgurului fiert este asemanatoare cu a orezului (tot fiert :)). Ar trebui ca atunci cand este absorbita toata apa sa fie fierte toate ingredientele. Daca nu, mai adaugati cate putina, la nevoie. In acest timp, cam cu 10 minute inainte sa fie gata pilaful, puteti adauga si mazarea. Mie imi place mai fresh, din acest motiv o adaug ultima, dar voi o puteti adauga si inainte de a turna apa, dupa cum va place mai mult. Dupa ce toate ingredientele sunt fierte, opriti focul si lasati pilaful acoperit cu capacul inca 10 minute. Doar atat, nu e mare filozofie, si daca invatati acest pilaf se deschide o noua lume, full of bulgur-related opportunities 🙂 .

Puteti gasi un scurt video pentru etapele retetei aici:

TIPS :

1. Orice orez, fie el orez normal sau bulgur trebuie lasat acoperit cam 10 minute dupa ce a fiert, timp in care volumul boabelor mai creste, iar pilaful/ risotto-ul devine mai consistent Acest lucru trebuie luat in considerare atunci cand finalizam mancarea, deoarece consistenta ei finala va fi mai groasa decat cea din momentul stingerii focului.

2. Bulgurul se gaseste in magazinele turcesti sau arabesti, si in unele supermarketuri la sectiunea de mancaruri exotice. Pentru aceasta reteta trebuie sa cereti bulgur mare, nu cel spart mic si prefiert. Va vor ajuta la fata locului daca mergeti sa intrebati.

3. Puteti folosi aproape orice legume aveti, cu conditia sa le taiati in bucati mici si sa luati in considerare timpul de fierbere. De ex. vinete proaspete – se adauga o data cu morcovul, rosii date prin razatoare sau taiate in bucati mici, in loc de pasta de tomate, fasole verde, etc.

Afyet olsun! 🙂

 

Bulgur  is a species of wheat which I initially thought is totally unknown in Romania. But, as I learned during a trip to the country side, it seems that it’s  worst, it is known, but as a good solution for feeding poultry (we are poor but fancy 🙂). My husband still laughs when he is telling his fellow Turks how some Romanians have no idea about this wonderful ingredient and others disregard it altogether, giving it to chicken and not even thinking of eating it themselves. I still hope that we‘ll give it another chance, so, here we go:

I’ll introduce it to you in more detail in a future post – as soon as i will buy the other type, ince bulgur so I can show you the difference.

Today I will share with you the recipe of one of the basic foods in Turkey, bulgur with vegetables, which is cooked on daily basis in most restaurants as a garnish, together with Turkish rice – Pirinc pilav. I call it, (if you will include it in your home-cooking, you will understand) – the food that you cook if your fridge is almost empty, with only 2-3 poor  vegetables, suffering for loneliness.

Ingredients :

  •  Bulgur 2 cups
  •  Two peppers red and green
  •  1 onion
  •  1 carrot
  •  chickpeas – boiled in advance or canned – 1 cup
  •  peas I used frozen but you can use fresh – 1 cup
  •  olive oil about 5 tbsp
  •  hot water
  • mashed tomato paste – passata – 3 tbs
  • pepper paste I used hot but you can use sweet, depending on your taste – 1 tbs
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • dried mint / fresh parsley – for sprinkling 

Start with frying the onionthen add the carrot and peppers . Leave to cook for about 5 minutes until soft, then add tomato paste and pepper paste. After another 5 minutes, during which it’s not a bad idea to stir often, add the chickpeas and bulgur (washed well in advance). The mix must remain about 10 minutes to fry because exactly this operation flavors the food, trust me! ;) Stir often, because bulgur has the ability to stick to the pan. 🙂 The next step is to add hot water. The water level should exceed with about 1 -2 cm the above mentioned mixture.Stir once more  to convince all bulgur not to stick, and then cover the pan with a lid. Usually about 20 minutes more are required for this pilaf to cook, but check, because there can be variations . The consistency of cooked bulgur is similar to rice (also…cooked :)). During this time, about 10 minutes before it’s ready, you can add the peas. I like my peas as fresh as possible, so that’s why I add them last, but you can add them also before adding the water. When all the water is absorbed all the ingredients should be ready. If not, add a little more water if necessary. After it’s done, turn off the heat and let the pilaf sit with the closed lid for another 10 minutes. And that’s all folks! 🙂  No big deal, and if you learn this pilaf, it opens a whole new world, full of bulgur-related opportunities 🙂.

TIPS :

1. Either rice or bulgur should generally be left covered about 10 minutes after turning off the stove, and during this while the volume grows and pilaf / risotto becomes thicker . This should be taken into account because its final consistency will be harder than the one when you turned off the stove.

2. You can find bulgur in Turkish or Arabic shops, in the supermarkets in the foreign foods section. For this recipe you should seek big bulgur , not the one small broken, boiled and dried. The market employees will help spot it if you ask.

3. You can use almost any vegetable you have, provided you cut them into small pieces and  consider how long it takes them to cook. Eg. fresh eggplant, added the same time with the carrot, grated or chopped tomatoes chopped into small pieces instead of tomato paste, green beans, etc.  After you try it once, you will understand how you like it and then you will add the quantities according to what taste or texture you want to dominate.

You can find a recipe short video steps here:

Afyet olsun! 🙂