During the summer, Romanian markets are full of vegetables.
During the summer, Romanian markets are full of vegetables. One of the most popular being string beans. Either green or yellow, round or flat-shaped, string beans serve as an excellent ingredient, most often used together with other vegetables.
Popular appetizers making use of string beans include string bean and mayonnaise salad. For this simple dish, you will need one kilogram of string beans, a small jar of mayonnaise and one head of garlic. This tasty dish is extremely easy to prepare. Peel and rinse the beans, then boil in water with a bit of salt. If the strings are long, feel free to cut them in halves.
Let the boiled beans cool. After draining, mix the beans with the mayonnaise and crushed garlic, add a little salt to taste and serve as an appetizer. You can also add a skinned and finely chopped tomato, or a little chopped dill.
Another very tasty dish is string bean stew. Meat is also used in this dish – beef, pork, or chicken, the latter being the most popular choice. Chicken breast or legs work just as well. You will need 1 to 1 and ½ kilograms of string beans and 3 chicken legs.
First, boil the chicken, repeatedly removing the foam that forms on top of the pot. Add the string beans after having washed and peeled them, then let boil over a low heat. For flavor, add a few finely chopped cloves of garlic. Try from time to time to see if it’s boiled enough, and when it is, add a little tomato paste, freshly chopped dill and salt to taste. Let the new mix boil for a little longer, then serve!
Early summer is also when markets in Romania are teeming with the new harvest of potatoes. Few foods are more versatile than the potato, and we will be looking at a couple of recipes that are as effective as they are simple.
Take about a kilo of potatoes, a few stalks of spring garlic, and a bunch of fresh dill. Brush the potatoes well to remove much of the thin peel. If they look less than fresh keep them in cold water for about a quarter of an hour. Cut them into pieces if larger, leave them whole if smaller. Strain them well, then deep fry them for a few minutes, until golden. Take them out, sprinkle them with finely chopped fresh garlic and dill, with salt to taste.
You can also make a similar dish, which is baked instead of fried. Sprinkle the potatoes with finely chopped spring garlic and dill, and also drizzle a generous amount of olive oil over them before putting them in the oven. It takes about 20 minutes for the potatoes to get cooked. You can replace the spring garlic with a garlic paste as a dip of sorts.
Irrespective of how you prepare them, new potatoes are always a treat. Enjoy!