Moldova located in the continent of Europe. It has Ukraine to the north and northeast, the Black Sea to the southeast, Romania to the south and west, and Ukraine to the northwest.
The capital is Chisinău.
The official language is Romanian.
The climate is warm and moderately continental. In the northern area temperatures range from the mid-40’s to the low 50’s, and in the south, they range from 60’s to the 70’s. It receives a varied amount of precipitation, and thin snow cover.
The staple foods are Ukrainian borscht, chicken, pork, potatoes, cabbage, tomatoes, bread, grilled sausages, fried onions, garlic, polenta, apples, grapes, plums, cherries and much more (https://elearn.fiu.edu/e-dev/WorldExplorer/Customs/Europe/Moldova.htm).
Mămăligă cu Brânză și Smântână (cornmeal with cheeses and sour cream) (https://romanianfood.wordpress.com/2011/06/08/blushing-polenta/):
- 1 lb. polenta (cornmeal)
- 8 oz. feta cheese
- 8 oz. ricotta cheese
- 1 TBSP oil to brush
- Sour cream
- 1 egg per person
- Prepare the polenta as indicated on the package.
- Once the polenta is boiled until a porridge, pour half of the polenta in an oven proofed dish that is brushed with oil.
- Sprinkle the mixture of crushed feta cheese and ricotta cheese.
- Pour over the rest of the polenta and bake in the middle of the oven at 392F for approximately 20 min.
- Take the dish out of the oven, let it rest for a few minutes.
- 4 slices of bacon
- 1 head cauliflower, chopped into bite-size pieces
- 1 lb. hot Italian sausage
- 4 C kale, stems removed, chopped into bite-size pieces
- 1 C onion, small dice
- 8 C chicken stock (low sodium)
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1-1/2 C heavy cream
- Parmesan cheese, garnish
- Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat.
- Fry the bacon until crispy, remove and drain, allow to cool, then crumble.
- Reserve 1-2 tablespoons of the bacon fat, set aside.
- Fry the sausage until cooked and crumbled, then drain the fat.
- Use 1-2 tablespoons of the reserved bacon fat and saute the onion for 3-4 minutes or until softened.
- Add the garlic and cook 1 minute more.
- Add the chopped cauliflower to the Dutch oven and the 8 cups of stock.
- Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Cook for 10 minutes, then add the kale and cook an additional 10 minutes.
- Add the cream, stir, and garnish with Parmesan cheese shreds.
- Season with salt and pepper, if desired.
PLACHIA (Moldovan Sweet Rice Pudding) (https://www.bylena.com/recipe/1140/Moldovan-Sweet-Rice-Pudding-Plachia/):
- 1 C short grain rice
- 3 C milk
- 5 TBSP sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1-5/8 oz. butter
- 1 TBSP vanilla extract
- Raisins, handful (optional)
- In a thick-bottomed saucepan, boil 1 glass of water.
- Wash the rice and add it to the water when it starts to boil, stir periodically and let it simmer until it absorbs almost all of the water.
- When the water is almost absorbed, add the milk mixed with sugar, bring the high heat to a boil, then turn it to low again and stir periodically until the rice boils well.
- The composition should be as thick as a classic milk rice. Take the pan a little off the heat and add the butter.
- Add the vanilla and the raisins and mix well.
- Beat the eggs well and pour over the rice and stir.
- Now you have two options.
- Cover the pan with a lid and simmer on the stove for 40-50 minutes OR
- Cover with aluminum foil and put it in the oven at 300 degrees F for 1 hour.
- After the allotted time, the rice can be seen as well cooked and has brown edges.
- Serve hot or cold, but hot is really good!