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Romanian Christmas food

the most loved food by both Romanian and foreigners

Romanian Christmas food is soooooo special. And tasty. My mouth is already watering. That's why you can find it all over the year not only in Christmas time.

Romanian Christmas food: cabbage rolls and mamaliga
I don't make a mistake when I say on Christmas every Romanian family have on their table sarmale, caltabosi, carnati and toba. Below you'll find short explanations of these words (and many others) and in the future their recipes. All of them being part of the traditional Christmas food in Romania.

Romanian Christmas food generally use pork (except Advent food). Pork meat, animal's organs, fat and blood. Everything swine has inside is used. Some of them are used for Christmas holidays, others are prepared to be eaten later, till in spring.
Romanian Christmas food: homemade sausages
I have to warn you. All this food has a lot of fat. Then how can we be well and healthy? Simple. Near all these types of food we drink wine. Red wine. We also drink tuica (plum brandy) as appetizer and we eat a lot of garlic and onion.

All pork preparation things start on Ignat Day. Then all appetizers are prepared and all the rest at least half prepared. The recipes kept from a generation to another differ from household to household (not much) but they can significantly differ from province to province.

OK! Let's see what is Romanian Christmas food about.

Christmas food - appetizers

  • carnati - home made sausages
  • caltabosi - sausages made from heart, liver, lung and meat of the head
  • lebervurst - a paste made from liver and pork fat
  • sangerete - blood sausages
  • jumari - melted fat
  • piftie - pork feet jelly (or aspic?)
  • toba - I found somewhere the name head cheese (?)
  • smoked ham - no comment this time
  • pork liver tart - no comment again
  • pogacele cu jumari - a kind of donates with melted fat
  • winter roll

Christmas food - soups

  • peasant soup with smoked pork meat
  • sour soup with meat balls

Christmas food - main dish

  • sarmale - cabbage rolls with pork
  • baked gammon
  • baked pork chops
  • breaded pork chops
  • baked pork backhead
  • pork schnitzel
  • meatballs
  • pork's alms
  • grilled carp
  • vegetable hodgepodge

Christmas food - dessert

  • sweet bred (cozonac)
  • knot-shaped Christmas bread (colaci de Craciun)
  • lots of cookies
  • lots of layered cakes
  • apple pie in advent time
  • baked apples and many others

Christmas food - others

  • mamaliga - if names like polenta, maize porridge, tortilla tell you something, please show me the most appropriate
  • balmos - a special food from mamaliga

That's all Romanian Christmas food I can think about right now. As I add more recipes to this site you'll see more links. If you quickly need a recipe from this list just let me know at my contact page and it'll be first on my list for updates.


More about Christmas in Romania
More about Romanian food






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