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A Cooking Adventure with Thom

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Romanian Sausages

Servings: 6

Well, I finally found the 'perfect' recipe for mititei using an old 1920's recipe written in Romanian. If you know Romanian, you can click on the link. Ok, I don't know for sure if the story is true, but the recipe was a winner! Granted, the recipe left out the amount of liquid that was needed and the salt amount. But who cares. I figured I could come up with my own amounts...and it worked.


You will need: This makes about 25 mititei
1 kg(2.25lbs) beef chuck
3 tsps summer savory or regular savory, if you can't find summer savory
1 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp Turkish cumin (or caraway?)
1/4 tsp star anise, ground
1 tsp+a pinch kosher salt
2 tsps freshly ground pepper
2 tsp baking soda ( I used 2 1/4 tsp)
1 tsp lemon juice

1/2 tsp unflavored gelatin
1 cup beef stock
1 head of garlic, crushed
1/2 cup warm water

Cooking Method

Day 1:

1. Get your beef and spices all ready, along with the lemon juice and baking powder.

2. Grind beef 3 times. Yes, 3 times...ok, if you insist 2x (but I did mine 3x)! That is very important. Do not cut any fat out! The fat plays a very important role by making the mititei tender and juicy.
3. Place the meat in a large bowl.

4. Combine spices including salt and set aside.

5. Combine gelatin and beef broth and set aside to dissolve.
6. After it has dissolved, warm the gelatin broth to about 140 deg activate the gelatin. Don't allow to boil, as boiling will deactivate the gelatin and it won't work properly. You just want the broth to get hot.
7. Let gelatin mixture cool slightly... setting it aside.

8. Add the lemon juice to baking soda. Let it sizzle.

9. Add baking soda mixture to the ground beef.
10. Mix the meat with your hands to incorporate the baking soda. (or do this in a mixer)
11. Add spices and 1/2 cup of previously warmed beef -gelatin broth( that has been cooled down a tiny bit) ... a little at a time as you mix the meat mixture with your hands.

12. Continue mixing and adding spices/broth for 30-40 minutes. Yes your hand will hurt! But this step is very important. The meat mixture will begin to stick to your hand. You will eventually feel the meat sort of become like a "bread dough", if you can imagine that I've contemplated on doing this in a mixer, haven't personally done it so... I've used the mixer to knead the meat and it works wonderful! I use the paddle attachment and beat on medium for 10-15 minutes. Highly recommend the mixer!).


13. Cover the bowl well with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
14. Place the rest 1/2 cup gelatin broth in the fridge as will solidify in the fridge.

Day 2:

1. Take meat out and let it come to room temp. Warm( don't boil) the gelatin broth until it is liquefied (it should have become gelatinous from sitting in the fridge overnight).
2. Crush whole head of garlic.
3. Add warm water to the crushed garlic and let it sit for a half hour.
4. Strain garlic and reserve the garlic-water.

5. Mix meat with your hands while adding the rest of the broth a little at a time. Do this for 15 minutes. 6. Add the garlic water little by little and mix again for another 15 minutes.
7. Cover meat well and refrigerate for another day or for another few hours. In case you do this in the morning, and want to fire the grill in the evening.
8. Otherwise, let sit in the fridge until next day.

Day 3 (or Day 2 evening):

1. Take meat out and bring to room temp.
2. Shape the 
mititei into about 3 inch long by 1 1/2 inch thick.
3. Brush with oil on all sides.

4. Heat up grill on high.
5. Oil the grill so that the 
mititei will not stick.
6. Place 
mititei on the hot oiled grill....still on high heat.

7. Turn mititei about 3-4 times, a total of about 6-7 minutes (as per my grill during winter time). You can brush the mititei with a garlic water (similar to the one that is added to the meat mixture)... as you grill them (I skipped that). Just be careful and don't burn them or overcook them. If need be test one for doneness.

8. Serve with a side of fries and a bit of Dijon mustard. You can likewise serve them with some fresh French bread, accompanied by some Dijon mustard. We absolutely loved the mititei! Hope you enjoy yours as well.

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