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5 Days Lamb & Green Feast Transylvanian Cooking Tour

5 Days Lamb & Green Feast Transylvanian Cooking Tour

  • Transylvania Culinary Academy, Crit Nr. 42, Brasov district, Romania

The Kitchen of the Springs Cooking Holidays

At this time of the year, following the March Spring equinox all of nature comes back to life after the long, cold winter. A special package has been created for you to experience the spring holidays and all that comes with it, including a great culinary workshop. The cooking classes will follow the local culinary tradition of the season. Special, traditional festive dishes, made from fresh spring products like organic country lamb, greens from the garden and fresh cheeses specific for the season will delight you with their incredible taste.

Highlights

  • Cooking and baking classes
  • Visit the Saxon village of Viscri, world heritage site
  • Taste wild spring greens that you can’t find in a supermarket
  • Visit a sheep fold, and taste the cheeses made by the shepherd
  • Witness the making of traditional spring lamb Transylvanian dish
  • Visit Sighisoara Medieval Citadel, world heritage site
  • Enjoy a festive Easter/Pasha brunch
  • 4 nights accommodation
  • 3 days with instruction
  • Hebrew, Romanian, English
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The rooms are authentic in their details: old furniture and ancient traditional tools and objects that could be proudly exhibited in a museum and are there to give you the flavor of the past times. In the same time, each room offers space and comfort to satisfy your needs and allows you to relax and be on holiday. All rooms have a large double bed for two guests and private en-suite bathroom. An extra single bed or two can be added on request to most of the rooms.

Amenities

  • Free Wi-Fi access
  • Internet corner with computer
  • Outdoor lounges with a smoker's place
  • Outside loggia for breakfast
  • Parking is available off the premises

In the heart of Transylvania and close to unique Unesco World Heritage Sites, this newly renovated and comfortable Saxon property dating from the 18th century offers the ideal experience of witnessing traditional food processes and culinary culture, along with authentic traditional life style. During your stay, you will enjoy: hands-on cooking classes on traditional popular dishes made from fresh natural or organic products; visits to the local market; buying products from local farmers and taking part in demonstrations of ancient food processing like the making of cheese or bread.

You will enjoy picking vegetables and fruits from the garden, foraging and hiking in the wilderness along with visits to Saxon villages, fortified churches and the medieval citadels of Transylvania. The Transylvania Culinary Academy is a place to enjoy being together and to create convivial times. The cooking programs are designed so you will enjoy authentic local food and wine, appreciate eating real food unadulterated by chemicals and additives and know where your food comes from along with discovering the culture and beauty of Transylvania.

Day 1 - Arrival, welcome dinner

  • Arrive from 14:00.
  • You will be assisted to accommodate in the location.
  • Welcome beverage and light snack - local peasant dish.
  • Guided visit of the village and church.
  • Aperitif and dinner.
  • Introduction and discussions on the workshop themes.

Day 2 - Market visit, excursion, free time, cooking class

  • Breakfast with natural products from local farmers.
  • Visit to local market and free time in Sighisoara medieval citadel, Unesco Heritage Site.
  • Lunch in Sighisoara is not provided.
  • 16:00 First cooking class. You will work with different cuts of lamb and you will be introduced to the greens of the season. Two traditional Transylvanian dishes will be prepared along with green salads.
  • Dinner with prepared dishes and local brandy and wine included.
  • After dinner, discussions and entertainment.

Day 3 - Excursion, shepherding, cheese tasting, baking class

  • Breakfast with natural products from the local farmers
  • Trip to Viscri, Unesco World Heritage Site, including the shepherding experience, cheese tasting and a picnic packed lunch.
  • 16:00 Baking class. Festive Easter and Pascha cheesecake with fresh cheese from the shepherd.
  • Drinks and dinner, followed by entertainment with local traditional music.
  • During Spring holidays (Pasha and Easter), Transylvania Culinary Academy will feature traditional festive food on Saturday or Sunday, as well as an Easter egg hunt on Sunday morning, plus a special brunch with surprises from the Little Rabbit.

Day 4 - Cooking class, free time

  • Breakfast with natural products from the local farmers
  • 10:00 Hands-on cooking class. You start with picking greens and vegetables from Transylvania Culinary Academy's own garden from which you will prepare three specific seasonal dishes. A local village cook will cook with you a popular soup, specific for the region, but very easy to do it in your own home and adapt it to your taste.
  • Lunch with prepared dishes.
  • Free time in the afternoon. Many activities available will be presented, including visiting interesting historical monuments in the region.
  • Dinner.
  • Optional - Wine tasting at a wine bar in Sighisoara - not included.

Day 5 - Departure

  • Breakfast with natural products from the local farmers.
  • Participants will receive the recipes of the prepared dishes.
  • Check out until 12:00.

The Transylvanian region Transylvania Culinary Academy is located in, is called Tarnava Mare, and it is rich in natural produce: a large variety of organically grown vegetables; an extensive selection of meats; varied dairy products, specialty herbal and blossom honeys and good wine are all available.

There are extensive forests where foraging can be enjoyed and you can collect wild herbs, forest berries and nuts, an assorted selection of wild edible plants and vegetables, as well as forest floor mushrooms and even truffles during the winter months.

Transylvania is a great place for natural produce because it is an area of predominately volcanic soil, it will pretty much grow whatever you want it to grow. There are still bear and wolves in the area. Advice: Do not forage without a guide. The whole region is extensively protected in European Union law.

Activities
  • Cooking classes
  • Mountain biking nearby
  • Wine tasting / tour
General
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Garden
  • Picnic area
  • Special menu request
  • Terrace
Services
  • Bicycle rental nearby
  • Car rental nearby
  • Free Wi-Fi / computer
  • Tour assistance

Wild cherries, blackberries, raspberries, rhubarb and other orchard fruits are available in different seasons of the year. October is the time when Transylvania Culinary Academy makes their table wine from the vine in their courtyard. Late December is the time when the pigs are slaughtered and then prepared for eating in many traditional ways, to be enjoyed through Christmas, New Year's Eve, and New Year's day. Many smoked and marinated cold meat cuts together with sausages and a variety of traditional meat dishes can be enjoyed and you will additionally have the possibility of experiencing cooking together with local villagers.

Lushko (traditional cabbage soup)

Put white cabbage pieces, dill, thyme, salt and black pepper with liter of water and let it simmer for some time till the cabbage is soft. Cut some bacon in small pieces and fry it in a pan. This will add an extra flavor to the soup. If you have smoked pork ribs you can put it to simmer with the cabbage from the beginning. When the bacon is fried, add two big onions finely chopped to fry with the bacon. Add tomato paste and 2 liters of water. Let it boil for 30 minutes. Make a light bechamel and add to it. Add salt and pepper to your taste. You can add sour cream when served.

Bechamel: heat a pan and melt the butter. Add the flour and fry it till light brown. Take aside from heat, start pouring part of the milk till you have a thick paste. Add some more milk and stir continuously. Return to the heat and stir adding few tbs from the soup. Add all this to the soup.

Visits to the historic fortified churches, towers, and their impressive views. Go cycling (bicycle rental is available in the area) or trekking through the beautiful surrounding countryside on the biking and trekking trails that connect to the villages close by. You can also go foraging and travel hunting in the surrounding area.

Optional tours

  • Brasov, architecturally a notable reminder and visibly reminiscent of the richness of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and, as the residents proudly call it, the best kept secret of a small city in the world. Brasov is also a major entry portal to Carpathian mountain wilderness areas
  • General unaccompanied and / or guided tours to nearby UNESCO World heritage Sites with fortified churches such as Viscri, Saschiz, Darjiu, Biertan, Valea Viilor, Cairtic, Prejmer
  • Sighisoara, a truly medieval citadel, home to Vlad Draculs birth house, summer concerts and many different types of festivals
  • 4 nights accommodation
  • Activities mentioned in the itinerary
  • Cooking classes
  • Daily breakfast

Driving directions from Bucharest

  • Driving from Bucharest, you have around 240 kilometers to Crit. It is approximately 3.5 hours drive. Bucharest is located in the South of Romania and has one airport open at present: Henri Coanda International Airport - Otopeni (OTP).
  • From Bucharest take the DN1 to Brasov.
  • From Brasov drive for 84 kilometers on E60 (Targu Mures direction), and after passing Rupea and Bunesti village, turn left at the sign to Crit.

Driving directions from Targu Mures

  • Targu Mures is 86 kilometers from Crit and Transylvania Airport Targu Mures serves the area.
  • Drive on E60 in the direction of Sighisoara and then Brasov.
  • After passing Sighisoara following the signs for Brasov, and drive for approximately 29 kilometers and then turn right at the sign for Crit.

Driving directions from Sibiu

  • Sibiu is one of the most important cities of Transylvania, and an European Cultural Capital from 2007. The Sibiu International Airport is an important access point for internal or foreign tourism.
  • To reach Crit, you have to drive 130 kilometers on route 14 via Medias and Sighisoara.
  • Follow the signs for Brasov for approximately 29 kilometers and then turn right at the sign for Crit.

Arrival by flights

  • Bucharest - Otopeni Henri Coanda International Airport (OTP), 260 kilometers to Crit - 3.5 hours
  • Cluj-Napcoa - Cluj Napoca International Airport (CLJ), 188 kilometers to Crit - 3 hours
  • Sibiu - Sibiu International Airport (SJP), 144 kilometers to Crit - 2 hours
  • Targu Mures - Transilvania Airport (TGM), 95 kilometers to Crit - 1.2 hours