Boxnote 123 : June 21 Gustare/Kalotaszeg Kostolo

Our second week in Jeki’s courtyard where we heard the cute courtyard dog is known as the ‘merges’ (angry) dog (because a long time ago, somebody bit somebody and M dog was involved .. but I’m not sure from Babi’s story who was the victor and who the victim!! )

I love the old market stories; the more involved I become with HPM, the more I realise that every market, even relatively new ones, are like ours and all have their tales to tell; all we have to do Is listen to them. I believe your local market is the most rewarding food shopping experience we can ever have.

When Zoli left with the goodies for Cluj; we collected the chamomile that springs up between the stones of Jeki’s courtyard for winter teas (it takes AGES picking chamomile);

I look forward to hearing what you think about Ildiko and Szilard bread .. ii is Edit’s recipe with a bit of a twist .some added zer/sova to give a softness.. it is a traditional thing to do and local.

Zoli, Szilard and I were actually discussing the deliciousness of zer/sova today and I heard how Z’s wife made balmos and his son went crazy for it; and even his wife, who didn’t like it (but had never eaten it); and how Douglas and I love it in soups, or even to just drink. Szilard will have more next week, so if you’d like it get it on the chart.

Photos – 1. when I run out of money and Douglas is transporting goodies from market to Jeki’s; I run up debts; today Zsofi neni was owed 35 lei and Olimpia 144 lei! You can see the sophisticated system we use to record it so as not to forget! IMG_1419

Viorica and her butter and cheese. Viorica’s amazing butter making skills are the main source for your ghee. I loved her buttery coloured blouse which melts into her cheese.IMG_1416

See further down for food specific stories.

Here is your Box this week!

Unusual mixed salad leaves – if you don’t know what something is, please ask us! … garden and wild rucola … dandelion/gyermek lancfu/papadie …. baby lettuce; Ilus neni seed, catalonia (red) marvel; lambs lettuce (I am finding the odd bit!) blue borage flower! Douglas, Julia and Agi, Huedin, Damos, Valeni and Alunis.

soska/macris/sorrelBozse, Bicalat. Doni Piri; Bozse II and Sarah (from Krazna) helped out Bozse (85). We heard from Doni that Bozse has an awful cough at the moment. Over the counter medicines cost the same as Bozse earned from Gustare group today (I tried to encourage soc flowers and ‘sea holly’, which was amazing cure for me when I had bronchial problems, to no avail!).

Herbs: .peppermint….lemon balm…..sage/salvia/zsaja Agi, Alunis and Julia, Valko , Douglas in Huedin, Damos (and the csipet csapat) cimbrisor/kakkufu, Valeni. .

corriander – Julia, Valko and Agi, Alunis, Kati in Damos. I am making more of Iulianna’s corriander chutney recipe it was so good last week!!!

.. the odd celeriac leaf is in there too! … and a bit of tarhon/tarkon from Bozse, Bicalat.


marar/kopor Maria, Zsofi, Huedin, Agi, Alunis

Parsley – Kati, Bicalat, and Maria Huedin,

Ceapa verde /Zold hagyma/ spring onionZsofi, Huedin. Zsofi and Zsebe Kati (Damos) helped me tie into bunches some of the TKD garden herbs for you. (the csipet csapat often forget their string, so today, Zsofi and Kati took some of the pain out of the task and nearly sold a bunch of chives to a Huedin market goer while they were at it! Better luck next time!!

Fresh garlicDouglas, Damos,

spinach, perpetual spinach – Zsofi, Huedin. Zsofi is only selecting the very best leaves.

Peas, fresh – you have two people’s pickings, Kati from Bicalat and Zsofi, Huedin. Zsofi’s are smaller and not so attractive but I found hers very delicious; she shelled them early this morning (and was desperate to finish at market and go and have a sleep!).

Unfortunately, on Sunday, an ice storm came to Huedin (it didn’t reach Damos or Alunis, where we were). The ice smashed some of her spinach leaves, so this is why the extras spinach are not looking very good. Eat fast! She is now the only person at market with perpetual spinach. All conventional spinach has finished or shot (gone to seed).

Fresh young broad beans or purple ‘mange tout’ or young beetrootJulia, Valko and Agi, Alunis, Douglasi in Damos.. Eat the small peas raw; but you’ll have to stir fry the larger mange tout and the whole broad beans. We’re going to make a pasta sauce with our ones tonight.

Ustoroita/keseru Eva and Piroska, Tetis. After the rains, these enterprising neighbours hit the fields around their village and collected these goodies!

Little Spring cabbage zsuzsi, Bicalat .

Castraveti/ugorka/cucumber zsuzsi, Bicalat . The first!

Fekete ribizli/blackcurrants/coacace negru Bozse, Bicalat.

Flowers An annunciation Lily. I always think of Dante Gabiel Rossetti (pre-raphaelite painter) when I see these flowers. And you also have Agi neni‘s speciality – marigold/corn flower/nigella bunches with a bit of swishy green fruu, snaffled from her daughter-in-law’s garden. You can make tea/dry/make creams from the marigold flowers


GREENS HERBS EXTRAs – Kale/kel/varza furajera – red curly Agi – Magyorokereke/us – Damos and Csipet csapat, Valeni (and yes, this tiny bag! Kale plants are plentifful but they are tiny at the moment … in the late Autumn, you will be drowning in kale! and spinach – as above.

EGGS – Jeki (Huedin); Kati (Damos)

PASTA/LASKA/TAIETEI – Eva, Izvorul Crisului

Honey – Olimpia and Nelu, Huedin, Poliflora (you just got the last two jars today!) – Mesteaca and a journey to Bihor for the salcam/akacfa ..

MATURE cow and sheep cheese – Szilard.

Apple Juice – The csipet csapat (the little people!), Valko. Made from local variety, autumn Valko apples and pressed, pasteurized in Bica village.

Walnut oil and butter – The csipet csapat (the little people!) and Sandor Erzsi, Valko

Nuts – Magdi, Horlacea

Palinka – Szilard

Bread – Berde lldiko, baked in Alunis with flours from Valeni and zer/sova! Amazing!

Always get everything out of plastic as soon as possible; even things in clean plastic like Pasta. Recently, I’ve been asking how pasta was stored pre-plastic days and I was told that it was put into a clean fabric napsack and suspended. It was so good/so dry.


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