Did you Know ?
The name "Romania" comes from the Latin word "Romanus" which means "citizen of the Roman Empire."
Romanian is the only latin language which has developed in the Eastern part of Europe, the rest of them being slavic
The modern jet engine was invented by the Romanian inventor Henri Coanda in 1910.
On 18th of March 1906 Romanian inventor Traian Vuia was the first European to build and fly a fully self-propelled, fixed-wing ‘automobile airplane.
The insulin was discovered by teh Romanian scientist Nicolae Paulescu. He originally called it pancreine.
The fountain pen was invented by Romanian Petrache Poenaru. It was patented in May 1827.
In 1938 Romanian Stefan Odobleja published "Psychology consonantiste" in Paris. He set the basic themes of cybernetics. His work appeared ten years before Norbert Wiener’s ideas were printed. Stefan Odobleja is considered to be the "Father of Cybernetics".
The earliest Homo sapiens fossils, up to now, were discovered in 2002 in south-western Romania, in the Cave of Bones. The fossil’s age is estimated at 37,800 to 42,000 years old.
The statue of Dacian king Decebal, carved in the rocky bank of the Danube's Cauldrons, is the tallest rock sculpture in Europe (135 feet tall).
Europe’s second largest underground glacier, the Scarisoara glacier, is found underneath the Bihor Mountains in Romania. It has a volume of 75,000 cubic meters and has existed for more than 3,500 years.
Herastrau Park is Europe’s largest park within a city. It covers over 270 acres (110 ha), .
Bucharest was the first city in the world illuminated by oil lamps (1895).
Timisoara became the first city of Europe with electric street lighting in 1889.
Timisoara was also the first European city with horse-drawn trams in 1869.
Romania’s famous Peles Castle, from Sinaia, was the first completely electrified castle in Europe. The electricity was produced by the castle’s own plant.
The first screening of projected motion pictures took place in Bucharest in 1896, shortly after the world premiere in Paris. One of the Lumière brothers projected several films for Bucharest’s high society.
Bucharest’s Palace of Parliament, also known as the People’s Palace, is the world’s largest civilian building with an administrative function and the second-largest building in the world after the Pentagon in the US. It covers some 330,000 sqm.
The Voronet Monastery, located in northeastern Romania, is also known as the "Sistine Chapel of the East". Its frescoes feature an intense shade of blue also known as the "Voronet blue".
Romanian cuisine finds its origins deep in the ancient Dacian era. Through its history, it got richer and more complex being influenced by different cultures which it has come into contact. One by one, Romans, Greeks, Turks, Saxons and Hungarians brought their own culinary traditions and step by step they were assimilated by the local cuisine. Even so, the taste and richness of Romanian traditional dishes remained unaltered through recipes passed down from generation to generation till nowdays.
The 45 years in the communist block surprisingly helped the traditional Romanian cuisine to maintain and evolve. Being totaly reluctant to the Western way of living, no fast food or very much processed junk food was available. Furthermore in the last 10 years of "Ceausescu's reign", people were poorer and poorer and less food was to be found on the market. That's why cooking at home and developing new recipes became the "national sport".
Romanian cuisine is very complex offers a great variety of flavors and meet the most exquisite taste. All kinds of meats and almost all known vegetables and fresh fruits are parts of delicious dishes, cooked all around the country. Some of the most popular are:
Zacusca – a vegetable spread having as main ingredients roasted eggplant, sauteed onions, roasted red peppers, tomato paste, oil, salt, pepper and bay leaves as spice. This vegetable spread is usually prepared in autumn and preserved in well clenched pots. Romanian usually eat it spread on slices of bread.
Eggplant salad – peeled roasted eggplant is mixed with onion, salt and oil. It is usually served with slices of red onion and spread on fresh baked bread. The salad has a creamy soft texture and it is so good that it makes the dish quite addictive.
Mashed beans with fried onion- blend beans until creamy and mix them with salt, oil and sautee onions. If the recipe is done right the mash beans will get a beautiful light terracotta color.
Smoked dry sausages and pastrami have an unbelievable flavor. Many of them are likely saltier or spicier and are always sliced and eaten as appetizers without cooking.
Lamb haggis – this is a traditional food prepared by most of the Romanians around Easter together with colorful Easter eggs. Lamb haggis is a mixture of minced lamb innards (liver , heart, kidneys, lungs,) with eggs , green onions, fresh dill and parsley. The mixture is wrapped in a pasta sheet and roasted in oven. It is served as an appetizer and some people like it with mustard.
Other appetizers are: toba ( it is like a wide sausage made of pork jelly, liver and skin suspened in aspic), hog’s pudding and all kind of cottage cheese,yellow cheese, matured cheese.
Romanians usually eat “ciorba” at the first dish. This term “ciorba” covers awide range of soups with a specific sour taste. The most popular Romanian soups are: tripe, meatballs, radauteanca, fish soups, dumpling soup, calf foot soups, noodles soup or fish soups. They are are soured by vinegar, lemon juice, sauerkraut juice or a traditionally fermented wheat bran named borș.
The most popular Romanian main dishes are: sarmale (rolled cabbage stuffed with minced pork or mutton meat, rice, onions and tomatoes), roasted pork knuckles with sour cabbage, veal stew, mutton pastrami with “mamaliga”(a cornmeal mush), forest mushrooms with sour cream,” mititeti” and vegetables with meat spits.
Salads: white and red cabbage, fresh vegetables, green beans with garlic and dill, sour cabage, pickles (brine or vinegar).
Desserts: “cozonac” (a delicious Romanian sweet bread traditionally with nuts and Turkish delight and die rosines, but they can have also cacao or poppy), papanasi (donuts with sourcream and fruit gem), apple and cinnamon pie, sweet cheese and raisins pie, plums and cherries pies and much more.
Cuisine of Wallachia
Open to the sea and for a long time neighbour with the Ottoman empire, Wallachian cuisine reflects many influences from the Roman to the Greek, Turks or Slavic ones.
Cuisine of Moldavia
The Eastern part of Romania has an unalterable cuisine evene if the Slavic influences can be found. The most popular dishes are: ciorba radauteanca (chicken sour soup), hribi cu smantana (forest mushroom stew with sour cream sauce), placinta poale-n brau ( Moldavian sweet cheese pie)or smoked trout packed in pine-tree branch.
Cuisine of Transylvania
The Western part of Romania was a permanent gate to the cultural influences from the Western Europe: Saxons, Austrian or Hungarian. This European dishes were partially adopted, partially adapted to the local taste and tradition: “Ciroba ardeleneasca” (smoked pork and potatoes sour soupo), “varza a la Cluj” (cabbage and minced meat ), cozonac ( a delicious Romanian sweet bread traditionally with nuts and Turkish delight and die rosines, but they can have also cacao or poppy).
Cuisine of Dobruja
The Danube Delta-the UNESCO world heritage site- is the most spectacular and unusual area of Romania, a surreal mixture of land and water, housing over 110 fish species (in salt and fresh waters). Naturally the signal word is “fish”. Except desserts, everything is cooked with fish: soup, grills, stews, cabbage rolls or peppers stuffed with fish, meatball, frog legs etc. And everything is fresh.
You will can taste some of these delicious Romanian dishes traveling with us in our Tours in Romania.