Carpathia: Food from the Heart of Romania (Hardcover)

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Staff Reviews

When thinking about European food, the main cuisines that come to mind are French, Italian, Spanish, and Greek. There is so much more to the food on this continent, it’s bursting with cultures and flavors. While all the listed cuisines are great, Romanian cuisine is often forgotten. Romania as a whole is often forgotten. Did you know that Romanian is a Romance Language? This cookbook is a wonderful insight into Romania’s culture! Full of hearty stews and a lot of paprika! If you’re looking for a new cuisine to explore, Carpathia is the perfect cookbook for you!


— From Neat November Staff Picks


The first book to celebrate the culturally diverse and delicious cuisine of Romania. A true fusion of East and West, where traditional recipes are given a truly modern twist.

Romania is a true cultural melting pot, its character rooted in many traditions from Greek, Turkish, and Slavic in the south and east, to Austrian, Hungarian, and Saxon in the north and west.

Carpathia, the first book from food writer Irina Georgescu, aims to introduce readers to Romania’s unique, bold and delicious cuisine. Bringing the country to life with stunning photography and recipes, it will take the reader on a culinary journey to the very heart of the Balkans, exploring Romania’s history, traditions, and food, one mouth-watering recipe at a time.

From chargrilled eggplants, polenta fritters, and butter bean hummus, to tangy bor?, stuffed breads, and Viennese-style layer cakes, this book is a true celebration of a country that’s never afraid to mix things up!

About the Author

Irina Georgescu is a Romanian food writer and cooking instructor. She is behind the hugely successful blog Life in Small Bites. Her recipes are inspired by her mother, family members, and Romania’s culinary heritage.

Praise For…

“I couldn’t be happier to see one of my favorite cuisines being represented by a voice as warm and thoughtful as Irina Georgescu’s. Carpathia is full of delicious and interesting recipes and photos that will tempt you to travel to the Carpathian Mountains immediately.”

"In this delightful debut, Romanian-born food blogger Georgescu shares the traditional recipes, and explores the various regional influences, of her homeland's cuisine. The opening chapter of small plates includes stinging nettle fricassee with garlic flakes and pumpkin seeds (recipe names are all presented in Romanian with English subtitles) and includes tips on nettle-picking (best in March, when they first appear). Bread makers will rise to the challenge of such offerings as Romanian cornbread or Hungarian chimney cakes, which are coated in chopped walnuts. Georgescu instructs that sour broths, made tangy by the addition of fermented wheat, vinegar, or pickle brine, are commonly served before a dinner's main course. Options include a cod-filled fish broth with rice and sour cream as well as a tarragon pork rib broth with smoked pancetta. Pancetta also turns up, along with ground pork, juniper berries, and sauerkraut, in the country's national dish, stuffed cabbage leaves. For desserts, there's a tasty array of baked goods, including an Easter favorite, brioche baked cheesecake, as well as a comforting noodle pudding with grilled peaches that uses honey rather than sugar. Shining a light on an underexplored food culture, this collection proves to be full of hearty and unique treats.€Â

"A captivating immersion course ' [A cookbook to] refresh the spirit and inspire in the kitchen ' Outlining the influences of the chef's native cuisine gives the reader anchoring context, but Georgescu beautifully details how Romanian cooking has melded into something soulful and self-possessed. Hearty succor fills the pages: baked apples stuffed with ham and feta; pan-fried chicken with caramelized quince; grape leaves filled with sticky rice and raisins; a cake, called chec, marbled with fresh berry syrup. A warm wryness seeps into Georgescu's writing. She translates bors, a ubiquitous wheat-based fermented liquid for flavoring broths, as €˜The Ingredient.'€

"At a time when we are all forced to stay at home, travelling in the kitchen can be a great comfort. And I have been so grateful for Irina Georgescu for taking me to Romania through the pages of her wonderful book, Carpathia. Every page is imbued with generosity, the spirit of community, and the flavors of a rich and varied culture: it makes for an uplifting, inspiring, and gorgeously transporting read right now.
— Nigella Lawson

Wherever you go in this fascinating country, you find a passion for food and a celebration of tradition. Irina Georgescu€˜s new book, Carpathia: Food from the Heart of Romania, is a marvelous exploration of Romania's rich culinary heritage, inspired by her family's recipe collection and her recollections of the family's €˜all hands on deck' approach to cooking and eating.

The debut cookbook from Bucharest born-and-raised Irina Georgescu celebrates Romanian food in all its meaty, smoky, sharp glory, enriched with fascinating folklore and atmospheric landscape photos.
Product Details
ISBN: 9781623719548
ISBN-10: 1623719542
Publisher: Interlink Books
Publication Date: May 4th, 2020
Pages: 224
Language: English