Let’s experiment one of the most popular recipes all over Romania, called 'chiftele'
Chiftele are ground meat patties, sometimes vegetarian, that are pan fried. When they are larger and oval, a formula favored in Moldavia, they are called 'parjoale'. The name 'chiftele' comes from the Turkish word 'kofte'. However, in Turkey they are made with lamb, mutton, or beef, as opposed to Romania, where they are made generally of pork. Predictably, in the Danube and Danube Delta area they are made of fish.
It is easy to make pork 'chiftele'. Take a kilo of pork, a few slices of stale bread, one egg, one head of garlic, a bunch of fresh parsley and one of fresh dill, finely chopped, flour, salt and pepper to taste, and vegetable oil. Soak the bread in water and squeeze out the excess, then put them through the meat grinder with the cubed pork. Peel and crush the garlic, then knead it together with the meat, the egg, and the fresh herbs, as well as salt and pepper. After the mixture is smooth, form by hand the patties, douse them in flour, then fry in oil at brisk heat. They can be served hot or cold.
There are differences between Romanian regions in this recipe. In Transylvania they use tarragon, with the garlic being replaced by finely chopped onion. They also used shredded potato instead of bread. These can be baked in the oven, covered in sour cream, with chopped tarragon added at the end as a garnish.
Fish 'chiftele' are just as good. Take a kilo of fish file, two or thee onions, a few cloves of garlic, two eggs, flour, salt and pepper to taste. You can add mashed potatoes, or alternatively two slices of soaked bread, and finely chopped dill. The fish and the bread or potato mash are put through the meat grinder. The paste is then kneaded together with the finely chopped onions, the eggs, with salt and pepper. Crush the garlic cloves, kneading in well into the composition, at the same time looking for possible leftover bones. Use a tablespoon to form the patties, and douse them in flour, then fry in oil. Enjoy!