Turtișoare – Traditional Romanian Flat Donuts & More

Traditional Romanian Flat Donuts

While I was discovering the city of Sofia and the Bulgarian cuisine, I was surprised to find out that one of my childhood favourite breakfast was considered a local treat. Its name is “mekitsa” and according to Wikipedia, it’s a “traditional Bulgarian dish made of kneaded dough made with yogurt that is deep fried. In Serbia they are called mekike. They are similar to Hungarian lángos and British Yorkshire pudding.”

All this time I thought that this was a Romanian breakfast, typical for the region where my grandma was born and raised. But the fact that the border with Bulgaria is only 50 km away makes me believe that the recipe might have been spread along the Danube by our ancestors. Maybe that is why it is similar in Bulgaria, Serbia and the Romanian Plain.

The small difference in the recipe is that my Grandmother does not use yoghurt, but milk, yeast and bread soda, and when she wants to make them extra fluffy she dips them in pork fat. I have a lot of beautiful childhood memories related to this morning treat so I could not leave things as they were after I read online that it’s a Bulgarian recipe. I said to myself that when I come back, I will ask my Grandma to cook them for us and I will share the event online. So I did, but as they were feasting she used the “light” recipe which includes yeast, flour, water and salt, and dipped them in sunflower oil. They were equally tasty as she uses flour and sunflower oil from their yearly production. My favourite thing when I was a little girl was to have one as soon as my Grandma got it out of the pan and eat it before everyone had the chance to taste them. In my opinion, that was the tastiest donut from the bunch! Later, we would all sit around the table and serve them with cheese. When they were cold, I loved adding plum marmalade on top.

We were a little bit late so I did not catch on camera the moment when the ingredients were added and the dough was created, but my Grandma promised to use the classic recipe the next time (eggs, milk and all) and we’ll have an end to end Romanian flat donut guide directly from her. We’ll see if there will be any difference in shape and colour comparing them to these ones.

Our family brunch could not be complete without dessert so we went into the garden and picked sweet and sour cherries, strawberries, raspberries, apricots,  and cherry plums. My Grandma does not have any idea of what a brunch is but I am sure that she was happy to have us there and share the goodies with us.

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