The Romanian Easter drob is a traditional appetizer for the Easter brunch, and this chicken version is a very popular twist on the well-known lamb drob.
Romanian Chicken Drob Recipe
Romanian Easter Drob or chicken drob is amazing! Chicken drob or how to get liver haters into actually eating and thoroughly enjoying something made with liver. Like my husband, who ate this Easter drob every day until it was all gone.
And coincidentally, we had several people having breakfast or a late snack with us during the weekend and they all particularly enjoyed the drob and wanted to know what it was and especially what it was made with. This kind of food is very unfamiliar to the Germans, but I am glad to say that all of them, who got to taste it, absolutely loved it.
What is drob?
The traditional Romanian Easter drob is actually made with lamb offals. It doesn't sound very appetizing, but trust me, lamb drob tastes amazing. It is similar to haggis or faggots if those terms are more familiar to you.
For the orthodox Christians, the lamb symbolizes Jesus' sacrifice for mankind, so traditionally each family would butcher a lamb for Easter. Or at least they used to do, I think nowadays butchering your own animals is not as popular as it used to be, well, at least not in the cities anyway.
And of course, when having a whole lamb to work with, you also have the offal. So the drob is actually a mixture made from the lamb offal like heart, kidney, liver, spleen and spring onions, green garlic and lots of herbs like dill and parsley.
The lamb drob is cooked in the lamb's caul fat, which is the liner inside the lamb's gut, but many people just cook it in a loaf pan or another small tin.
There are lots of variations of this very popular Romanian Easter dish, but the one I am most familiar with is the one made with chicken liver and chicken breast.
My grandmother used to make the traditional lamb recipe as well and I used to like it a lot (unlike many of my friends), but more often she would make the chicken version. Why? Simply because it was a lot easier to buy the ingredients, not only in spring/at Easter but all throughout the year.
I would like to make the traditional recipe myself one day, the main problem is that it is very difficult to buy lamb offal in Germany, actually getting lamb is not as easy here as it is in most other countries, it normally involves a bit of luck and a longer trip to a Turkish food store or to a very large supermarket, which would sell frozen lamb.
And I have never ever seen lamb offal sold anywhere. So I stick to chicken, which is quite OK because I like anything made with chicken and chicken liver is my favorite kind of liver anyway.
- You will need chicken liver and a smaller amount of chicken breast.
- Another ingredient I have never seen in Germany and which is an important part of the drob is the green garlic. In case you don't know it, it looks like green onions only the leaves are formed a bit differently and I think you can only get it in spring.
- Because I cannot get that here in Germany, I accidentally came to the idea of using wild garlic instead, the wild garlic season has just begun, so I thought why not? It was a brilliant idea, I have to say. 🙂 The wild garlic gave the drob that subtle herby garlic flavor and contributed to obtaining the right color and texture of the Easter drob.
- However, if you cannot get either green garlic nor wild garlic, increase the number of spring onions used and add about 4 grated garlic cloves to the mixture.
- I always use mushroom from a can, because that is the way my grandmother always did it.
- You will need lots of fresh dill and parsley.
- Usually, I have nothing against frozen herbs, but in this case, I would only use fresh herbs.
How to serve?
- You can serve the chicken drob as part of the Easter brunch with bread, crackers or crispbread.
- Assemble a large platter containing raw vegetables like radishes, green onions, red bell peppers, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes.
- Add some olives and maybe some grapes. The grapes are not traditional as they are not something that grows in spring, but they taste very good together with the drob.
- Don't forget to serve a good medium or hot mustard on the side.
- The chicken pastete makes a good appetizer before any other more substantial meal (it is really a low-calorie dish).
- You can take it on a picnic or make sandwiches with it.
How to keep?
- The Romanian drob keeps very well for at least 4-5 days.
- Keep it refrigerated in an airtight container.
More traditional Romanian Easter recipes
Romanian Pork Meatball Soup – Ciorba de perisoare.
Romanian Boeuf Salad – I don’t think that there was ever an Easter in Romania when we didn’t have this salad.
Roast Leg of Lamb – This is the centerpiece on any serious Easter table in Romania.
Lamb Stew – Incredibly tender lamb pieces stewed in an aromatic sauce.
Cozonac – Romanian Sweet Bread with Walnuts – This is the most traditional sweet thing you will find in every Romanian family on Easter and Christmas.
Pasca - Romanian Easter Bread - Pasca is a traditional Romanian Easter cheesecake or Easter bread. A sweet yeast dough filled with a smooth cheese and raisins filling.
Romanian Easter Drob
- 500 g/ 1.1 lbs chicken liver
- 250 g/ 8.8 oz chicken breast
- 100 g/ 3.5 oz green onions
- 50 g/ 1.7 oz green garlic See note
- 1 can sliced mushrooms
- 3 large eggs
- 1 bunch parsley about 30 g/ 1.05 oz chopped parsley leaves
- 1 bunch dill about 30 g/ 1.05 oz chopped dill
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt or more to taste
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius/ 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a small baking dish 20x20 cm/ 8x8 inches with baking paper.
- Place the chicken liver in a medium pot, cover with water and bring to a boil. Boil for 3-4 minutes and drain well. It should be cooked through but still slightly pink in the middle. In another pot cook the chicken breast as well, it should be cooked through.
- In the meantime roughly chop the onions and garlic. If using regular garlic, you should grate it. Drain the mushrooms and roughly chop the herbs.
- Lightly beat the eggs in a small bowl.
- When the chicken liver and breast are cool enough to handle, chop them both into pieces.
- Place all the prepared ingredients in the food processor, add the salt and the pepper, and process until you obtain a rough paste. I never make it too fine, I like to have some bits of meat and greens left. Taste and add more salt and pepper if necessary.
- Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan and level. Bake for about 30-35 minutes until a nice crust is formed.
- Let cool completely, remove from the baking dish and cut into squares. Serve as suggested above.