Tochitura – a traditional Romanian pork and sausage stew with cheese and eggs and served with polenta.
PORK AND SAUSAGE STEW
Although this sausage stew served with eggs, cheese and polenta is a traditional Romanian recipe, which has different versions in different parts of the country, I must admit that this was the first time I have ever had it.
I did hear about it before and I have always found the name Tochitura very strange, it was a weird word, which didn’t tell me much about the dish itself, I always imagined this to be made with ground meat…
But it isn’t!
No ground meat in this recipe, only cubed pork and chopped pork sausages in a tomato sauce, everything topped with a fried egg and plenty of cheese.
The calories and the fat amount in this dish, you ask? Better not ask… I have no idea and I don’t really want to know…
Fast forward to 2019 when updating this sausage stew recipe: you can see how many calories tochitura has in the recipe card section below.
However, despite the calorie issue, this was a dish I just had to make. It is something so utterly Romanian when it comes to food, I could not leave it out.
You might think that I exaggerate, if it was such a must-try Romanian recipe, why haven’t I had that before?
Well, there are lots and lots of typical Romanian recipes I have never had in my grandmother’s house, she was just like that. She would only cook her handful of recipes, completely ignoring anything that did not suit her taste or ideas about food.
I am sure that in this case, it was the name of the dish that put her off ever trying to make this, I told you, tochitura is a weird word.
Other famous recipes that any Romanian person, who didn’t grow up in my grandma’s house has probably tried at least a few times before, are these Romanian Cheese Dumplings or these Romanian Cheese Doughnuts.
But despite the calories and the fat content of this dish, I am glad I have tried this sausage stew with polenta. It is a hearty, solid dish and really so delicious.
Eating it will give you the feeling of being a Romanian peasant about 100 years ago having dinner after a long day of hay-making. 🙂
INGREDIENTS FOR SAUSAGE STEW
- I used pork neck, but other cuts of pork should be fine as well. Don’t choose something very lean, fattier parts are better.
- Tochitura is usually made with traditional Romanian sausages. Use coarsely ground sausages, preferably smoked.
- Traditionally you would always use lard to make this Romanian sausage stew or tochitura. If you don’t want to buy lard just to make one dish, use vegetable oil (like sunflower) instead. No olive oil, it just doesn’t fit when cooking traditional Romanian food.
And here are some more dishes using lard, if you decide to buy a pack of lard:
- Traditionally branza de burduf, which is a sharp and delicious cheese made of sheep’s milk. As you will hardly find that outside Romania, feta cheese (preferably sheep) would make a good substitute.
WHAT TO SERVE WITH SAUSAGE STEW?
This dish has to be served with polenta, nothing else would do, in my opinion. Here is How to Cook Basic Polenta – Mamaliga.
Ideally you would top this dish with Romanian sheep’s cheese – branza de burduf. However, you will not find that cheese outside Romania, unless you make it yourself I suppose, so feta cheese is a good substitute.
And don’t forget gogonele – pickled tomatoes or other kinds of pickled vegetables, if green tomato pickles are not available.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 4
Serving Size: 1/4 of the dish
Amount Per Serving:Calories: 808 Total Fat: 57g Saturated Fat: 20g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 31g Cholesterol: 363mg Sodium: 944mg Carbohydrates: 9g Net Carbohydrates: 0g Fiber: 1g Sugar: 5g Sugar Alcohols: 0g Protein: 52g