When you think of Romania, specifically the Transylvanian region, I bet you don't think of a culinary destination, but wow, what a delight for food lovers.
Local, seasonal produce fills the tables at the local homestays. Typically influenced by the Turks, Slavics and Hungarians, the evening meals were simple, yet so hearty and delicious.
Ciorba (soup) was usually our starter, freshly made and almost never ending, consisting of meat, vegetables, sometimes mushrooms and cabbage served with freshly made sour cream, produced from cows in the local village. In true Romainian style this was washed down with a (not) very small shot of Horinca, the local homemade pear "brandy".
The main course is usually meat based, pork being the predominant meat but lamb, beef and chicken also feature highly. Sometimes served with corn mea, which is similar to Polenta, and cooked in a cast iron stove or to our delight, mash potato!
Tomato and Cucumber salads, exquisite Aubergine dips and other organic fruits and vegetables, and add to the already heaving table of food, .
A large, delicious looking bowl of stuffed, juicy fresh red peppers 'ardel umpluti' get added to the feast whilst we try the local rose wine, made by the owner and tucked away in the pantry.
And then dessert! Freshly baked plum pies (they were in season during our stay) - fluffy sponge and the perfect sweetness.
Fortunately after spending days walking through the local villages and walking high in the mountains, admiring the stunning views, we all develop a ravenous appetite... and the exercise means I may not need to be rolled out of Romania!