A little pre-ramble: Thanks for all the nice comments on the anniversary post. After I published it, WordPress informed me that it was my 100th post — a pretty cool achievement (and coincidence), I’d say. And today, January 4th, is the anniversary of starting my blog — its first birthday! So here we go — on to post #101 and another year of living and blogging in Switzerland.
Cozonac is a Romanian bread traditionally eaten at Christmas and Easter. It is sweet and rum-flavoured, with a swirl of either a walnut-based or Turkish delight-based filling decorating each slice. It is the perfect bread that needs nothing on top; it is delicious with milk, and highly addictive. Stelian has been eating it every Christmas of his life; I’ve been eating it every Christmas since meeting him and his family. So when we didn’t return to Canada for Christmas this year, we mourned its absence. That’s when I decided, hey, I’m an intrepid hausfrau — I should take matters (in this case, wads of dough) into my own hands.
Stelian’s mom is the cozonac master — hers loaves always look perfect and taste glorious, so naturally, it was to her that I should have gone for the recipe. The only problem with that is that like many highly skilled bakers, she does not need a recipe, and works with the dough pretty intuitively, sensing when it needs more or less of something. I, on the other hand, am scared as heck of breadmaking, and I can sense the needs of dough about as well as I could those of a baby crocodile. I needed step-by-step, no-deviation-allowed instructions.
Luckily, through the magic of the internet, I was able to find a recipe in English and bossy enough to be suitable for a beginner. And the result? After several hours spent mixing, kneading, rising, rolling, and filling, we had this!
I am still pretty flabbergasted at the idea that something so amazing came out of my oven. Here’s the inside view:
The one on the left is the walnut-raisin filling; the right has Turkish delight and raisins. They were both so, so good — the air bubble in the lefthand loaf did not affect its deliciousness, and I was assured by Stelian’s mom that this just sometimes happens.
So, not bad for a first attempt, and the proof of success is in the fact that the 2 of us ate nearly 2 full loaves of this in 3 short days.
So there you have it…another way in which we are becoming fat, and another reason for you to come and visit. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go run on the treadmill forever.