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  • iamronen 12:58 pm on October 23, 2016 Permalink |  

    Plywood Kitchen 

    I like the simple layout, the sliding doors that don’t close everything (which is kind of how things are used!) and the small spaces for fingers that give access to doors and drawers without need for handlesor knobs.

  • iamronen 1:06 pm on August 24, 2016 Permalink |  

    Architecture Events Romania (for Itsik) 

    This page will be continually updated with architecture related events that may interest Itsik and Yifat. Newer Events will be added at the top of the list so that older / less relevant events will fade down in the list. Within each year events are sorted according to their dates.



    1. Nov 3-4 – Bucharest: Risk Reduction for Resilient Cities, International Conference
    2. Oct 31st – Nov 1st – Bucharest (Raddison Blue Hotel): RIFF Bucharest 2016, International Architecture Expo Conference
    3. October 19-20 – Bucharest: Building Health
    4. October 6th – Cluj Napoca (Florin Piersic Cinema): Architecture, Renewing cities: Building environments for new generations (4th Edition)
    5. September 28-30, Bucharest: EURAU 2016 “IN BETWEEN SCALES”: European Symposium on Research in Architecture and Urban Design
    6. September 22-23 – Iasi: INCD URBAN-INCERC, 12th edition of the research conference on constructions, economy of buildings, architecture, urban and territorial development
    • itsikh 12:51 pm on September 4, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      hi Ronen and Iulia, Thanks for the quick response and high-quality way to access informationI. I begin to wander and enjoy And at the same time find an event we can catch him a ride to visit you as soon as possible, the current summer.
      thanks again’

  • iulia 8:59 am on June 2, 2016 Permalink |  

    elderberry (soc) flowers syrup 

    last week when we made the strawberries jam I also started to make elderberry syrup.


    I was searching the internet for recipes. I knew the basics from my mom and grandmas… but not details. never made it on my own from A to Z.

    found different recipes with different styles of cooking, quite different quantities for the ingredients.

    Step ONE: collect and clean flowers

    I collected a LOT of flowers – the red and blue big plastic containers were full.

    while Ronen was keeping the jam to cook, I was separating flowers from their stems. this was a looooooong proces – some good hours.



    Step TWO: maceration

    I put flowers. added lemon juice and boiled water, to sit for five days.

    there were two big glass jars and the biggest pot were full with flowers. I put juice from two lemons in each of the jars, from four lemons in the pot.

    I mixed the contents each day, during the five days, at least twice a day.

    the next day after assembling these contents I felt like adding more lemon juice: the same quantity as the first round, in each of the containers.


    Step THREE: cooking

    yesterday we got to the cooking phase, rocketing again.

    I filtered the liquid which was already yellow and beautifully smelling of elderberry flowers. squeezes the flowers.

    used the plastic sieve and white cloth (my mom brought us for bread covering) for sieving. there was 15 l of liquid.

    added 6 kg of white sugar and put it to boil. the big-tall pot was full to the top.

    this resulted in 18 l of syrup, not so thick.


    Step FOUR: bottling

    we then sterilize and cook the bottles again.


    what I’ve planned to be around 4-5 litres of syrup (at the moment Icollected the flowers) it got to 18 l :).

    that was quite and estimation… we have for some years now!






  • iulia 7:53 am on June 2, 2016 Permalink |  

    strawberry jam 

    we did this last week…


    ingredients: 10 kg of strawberries from Ildi and Levente, 1 kg of white sugar, 600 gr of raisins (mixed: gold and brown) and juice from two big lemons.

    first we cleaned the strawberries, put them to sit for one day, with sugar.


    in the last phase of boiling I mixed it a bit, to make it a bit saucy and still have the beautiful chunks in it :).

    the whole thing resulted in 8 big jars, 9 small and 3 little ones…. and a bit of extra for our first taste… in a Bhudeva cake.


  • iulia 11:12 am on April 1, 2016 Permalink |  

    In seach for grains 

    I’ve started to inquire for grains, here I will post what I found about wheat, alac (spelta), buckwheat, millet, rice, rye, oat, barley(orz), corn, sorghum (sorg)….

    • iulia 11:13 am on April 1, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Topa Farm – 10 km from Sighisoara in Albesti.
      They grow their wheat and corn (eco). They also have a small mill and they do wheat whole flour.
      If we buy grains it is 3 lei / kg. 1 kg of whole wheat flour 5 lei.

      i found them last autumn and from then on it was recommended by ecoruralis (Ramona) and other contacts from Seminte Libere (Facebook group).

      Contact: 0740 256 990 –

    • iulia 11:17 am on April 1, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Mr. Nicolae BANC – Caianu (near Mociu)

      I have his contact from ECOMANIA SRL (the ones who makes the whole wheats biscuits from Petry – Tg. Mures). I called ECOMANIA (0756 383 296) and the women was very open to share their contact.

      I spoke with Mr. Banc last week – very friendly, passionate to share his experience about flours and grains. He is growing durum, oat and corn grains, eco.

      He told me that out of 1kg of grains he gets out 65% white flour, 25% bran (tarate), 9% “red” flour. Mixing these we get whole flour.
      He doesn’t have that much durum left for now… but a few kg (20, /i asked) he has, for us, also being happy we are almost neighbors, here.

      Contact: 0744 934 683. We will call him and make them a visit in Caianu, on our next way to Cluj.

    • iulia 11:18 am on April 1, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply – between Arad and Timisoara
      They are a German family farm –

      I have their contact from ECOMANIA and also recommendation from Mr. BANC (above).
      They rotate their crops for 7-8 year, no plowing.

      They have spelt, barley and rye.
      I called Christian and then Katharina. I sent her an email also – she will send me a list with everything they have, including prices.

      Biofarmland Price List

      Contact:, tel 074 622 35 25

    • iamronen 11:30 am on April 1, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

    • iulia 7:56 am on April 11, 2016 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      We got last weeks:

      10 kg of durum from Mr. Banc (we were visiting him) in Barai.
      TerraNatura: 25 kg of each: spelt, wheat and rye (375 lei, free shipping to bhudeva with Transilvania Post)

  • iamronen 1:33 pm on March 15, 2016 Permalink |  

    Outside CookingRocket Stoves 

    Andreea sent me this thread with some inspiring images / ideas for the outside cooking rockets (yet to be molded)

  • iamronen 1:02 pm on March 15, 2016 Permalink |  

    How to make a Straw Matress 

    I came across what looks like a good tutorial on making a straw matress

  • iamronen 7:13 pm on November 8, 2015 Permalink |  

    Sourdough Insights 

    So the games have started … with every bread questions come up … new information appears and this is a good place to collect it.

    I am again impressed by how most of the information available seems to be overly complicated. You can easily get the impression that you need so many things to do this right. My motivation rejects this information as does my reality … I don’t even have a proper oven where temperature can be controller … I want solutions that are rocket-stove-able 🙂 So it is interesting to sift through the information and try to reject things which are too much and yet pick up tips and tricks that may be useful.

    Also so much information is technical “do this and then this and then this and then this” instead of telling a story that can guide you as you gain experience.

    First thing is the “fallen bread” symptom (when baking a bread without a form) Annelieke and I experienced both in Portugal and then I was able to replicate here at Bhudeva. Turns out that it is, most likely, from letting the dough rise for too long … and that yeasts eat through the gluten strands … and the bread falls. So you can’t just leave it over night, or if you do, better to leave it in refrigeration. When the dough starts to open and crack … bake it … or if you’ve gone past the optimal point knead it again and let it rise again. I also found this very thorough troubleshooting list for sourdough … how convenient 🙂

    Another interesting disovery on how to store and transport (including in carry-on luggage) starter. Apparently if you spread a thin layer on baking paper and let it dry, you can collect the flakes, take them with you, send them wherever you want … rehydrate them and you are good to go!


  • iamronen 7:40 pm on September 7, 2015 Permalink |  

    Zacuska 2015 

    This has been a prosperous jam year: mullbery jam, elderberry jam and pear jam are stocked up in the summer kitchen.

    In addition abundant corn relish and tomato sauce batches have been prepared.

    It’s now time for the zacuska … and I am approaching it differently this year … for a couple of reasons. First is that I had a sad zacuska making experience last year. I lost three batches of zacuska (one with mushrooms and two with beans) that spoiled (there is a theory why, but that is another story. Second, there are alternatives Last year I collected a few options which provided a richer palette then zacuska spread. This includes things like humus, lentil paste and and a bean-paste which is like zacuska … but is made in fresh batches using freshly cooked beans together with a pre-made zacuska. Bottom line there is less need for making a ton of zacuska in advance.

    So this year it is down to three things:

    1. Classic aubergines and peppers zacuska.
    2. Bhudeva classic roasted peppers in wine and honey zacuska.
    3. Pepper and tomato sauce – a liquidy zacuska used for making the bean paste.

    I have recipe’s for the first two. The third Andreea and I made in the past but I don’t have the recipe. I am going to ask Andreea is she can find it and Annelieke if she has a general direction she can suggest for making it based on her familiarity with it and her cooking skills.

    I will be getting the produce for the first two tomorrow and making them in the coming days (probably with Iulia’s help as she is planned to be here in the coming days). The third I hope to do during the next couple of weeks.

    After that there is pickling … and preparations are pretty much done for this abundant winter.



    • annelieke 7:48 pm on September 7, 2015 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Can you publish the “classic” zacuska recipe here, Ronen? Good starting point for adaptations……

      • iamronen 8:00 pm on September 7, 2015 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        This is the recipe for the bean zacuska that spolied twice last year:


        • 1kg beans
        • 2kg round red peppers (gogosar)
        • 2kg long red peppers (capia)
        • 1kg onion
        • 1kg carrot
        • 2-3 heads of garlic
        • 1 liter oil
        • 1 liter tomato sauce
        • salt + pepper


        • cook beans until soft
        • roast both peppers (optional)
        • chop onions
        • chop peppers
        • chop carrots
        • put everything except the beans in the pot
        • cook for ~1 hour
        • add salt and pepper
        • add beans
        • cook until desired thickness
        • pack
        • iulia 7:32 pm on September 8, 2015 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          I share my mother-in-law recipe here too (I like it’s taste):

          2.5 of white onions
          5 kg red peppers (gogosari)
          500 – 600 ml oil
          1 liter tomato juice
          5 kg roasted aubergines
          salt, pepper

          I like it’s taste, I also like it cause it’s not oily (my mom puts 1 litter of oil in her recipe and it gets oily).

          We also played with beans for some of the aubergines: 800g cooked beans in place for half of the aubergines.
          With beans it gets even more non-oily, as beans absorbs liquids.


          cook beans until soft
          roast aubergines, clean, wash, drain
          roast peppers (more tasty, clean them) or not
          get everything in the shredding machine (onion – separate, pepper, aubergines, beans)

          Cook onion in oil; add peppers. Boil until peppers are soft (stir(?) / amesteca constantly). Add the rest of the ingredients (keep steering). Boil for everything to come together, taste for salt and pepper.

          Then the sterilizing process…

          Out of this we got about 18-20 jars – 400 ml each (smaller ones).

          We also did some batches like:

          only with beans (no aubergines),
          with some (harvested from the forest) cooked & shredded mushrooms instead of beans.

          PS: we always did like 3-4 batches at the same time (in a 50l cast iron boiler), don’t know if this counts for the great(for me) taste! 🙂

      • iamronen 9:21 am on September 9, 2015 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        the “classic” is, as I understand it, based on aubergines and peppers and this is the base recipe I am using. This year I have decided to remove the green peppers (ardei gras) and put it only roasted red peppers (gogosar). This is the only real zakuska I am making I’ve opted for a larger 1.5x batch.


        • 10kg aubergines
        • 4kg peppers ardei gras (green peppers)
        • 4kg gogosar (fat red peppers)
        • 1kg carrot
        • 3kg onions
        • 1 liter oil
        • 2 liter tomatoe sauce
        • salt + pepper


        • roast aubergines + peppers roasted
        • blend aubergines + peppers
        • chop carrots
        • chop onions
        • warm up a pot with oil and add onions
        • add everything else and cook and stir until desired thickness
    • annelieke 8:04 pm on September 9, 2015 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Mmmmm, looking forward to taste this year’s results 😉

      Comparing recipes and imagining variations possible based on a standard batch of zacuska, I have the following suggestions:

      » No garlic, can be added fresh all winter and has a better taste raw and fresh.
      » In the bean pastes we made last year, I liked the extra tomato flavour. No need to add more tomato juice to the standard zacuska. It can be added while preparing a fresh portion of a zacuska variation (beans, mushrooms, ………), by soaking the beans (or mushrooms) in tomato juice, or, in the case of the bean paste, when it needs more liquid anyway, thin with tomato juice instead of water after cooking the beans.
      » Instead of starting to blend aubergines and peppers, start with oil and chopped onions (sauté them lightly). This adds to the full taste.
      » Use more carrots, 2-3 kg instead of 1kg. This will give more sweetness to the basic zacuska and will help to compensate for the “floury” taste of the beans. I think the taste gets more interesting and subtle adding more carrots then adding more peppers.

      Enjoy the making!!!!!!

    • annelieke 7:25 am on September 10, 2015 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Ah, and I agree with the pepper decision, only red (gogosar)

  • iamronen 2:15 pm on September 7, 2015 Permalink |  

    Flour Mill 

    Given that both Iulia and I make bread regularly I’ve been thinking about getting a flour mill for Bhudeva so we can purchase grains (which store better) and make flour as needed. I’ve asked Iulia and she was interested!

    I’ve consulted Iulian (the producer who makes bread at Cutia Taranului) about this and his main feedback was first focus on finding quality cereals. He also provided a link to a friend of his who imports these mills to Romania.

    When Andreea and I thought about this a few years ago I did some research and came across the Komo brand often mentioned also in the USA and available in Romania (online buying options I came across are here and here). I’ve also seen Komo on

    Two differences I noticed about the two companies:

    1. The mills from Iulian’s friend are made of pine while the Komo mills are made from hardwood.
    2. The mills from Iulian’s friend have 5 years warrantee while the Komo mills have 10-12 years.

    When I visit Annelieke this fall I will have a chance to see what it is like to use the mill she has (physically larger then the mills I’ve been looking at and powerful ~600w compared to 200-360w in the mills I’ve seen) and allow that experience to further inform me.

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