The Romanian welcome with bread and salt
The bread and salt have a symbolic meaning: they comprise the Romanian way of saying, "welcome in my house". So, this is a Romanian welcome greeting ceremony, a traditional custom expressing hospitality, showing that the guest is welcomed.
It is not commonly practiced during daily life. Often, besides bread and salt, Romanians offer also a glass with traditional home-made alcohol, țuica.
Salt has been used in different ways since the beginning of civilization. Salt has been used by Romanians in different traditional rituals as a fortune teller or to protect people, animals and places, having a purifying role. Salt is used even today in other rituals at weddings or child birth to protect or to cleanse. Parts of the rituals have been changed or modernized, some of the meanings have been lost, the roots being found only in remote villages or in the memories of some old storytellers.
The Bread of Pecica - a national brand
Have you notice the bread? If not, take a look :
It's a very special bread. Why? Because ... it is the best Romanian bread baked on the Romanian traditional earth oven. The people from Pecica are known for wheat and bread. "Pecica" means in Slavic language, "oven", which shows that the people from these places put high value on wheat and the bread which comes out of it. The bread from Pecica is made, for decades, by the same secret recipes. Somebody tried to find some of the secrets of Pecica's bread, of course without any result because the people from Pecica not share the recipe with "non-s-of their" :) It's a very good kept secret. The people of Pecica inherit the secret recipes from generation to generation, because they are convinced that in this way they can bring prosperity to their families. Pecica's bread is also famous because it is made out of high quality wheat, because Pecica is the best land in Plain of Arad. The round bread and the folded bread are backed directly on the traditional earth oven - brick kilns. Bakers say they use an ancient recipe: the bread is baked only in wood fired brick ovens made by Gypsies. It takes several hours (more than 5 hours) until the oven is heated; meanwhile, the backers knead the dough, and after that the dough have to yeast. After that , the fire from the oven is extinguished and the dough is backed. The flour is made in the area, while the yeast is homemade and preservatives free. Bread can stay fresh for ten days if it is kept in a cool room. The famous bread of Pecica reached until 1989, to Bucharest for the presidential food for the former dictator Nicolae Ceausescu. A team of former security services take every morning ten breads, which were tasted by a taster, to not be poisoned. Bread was transported to the capital city Bucharest by plane. Recently, Pecica's bread was taken even in European Parliament by a member of European Parliament from Arad. Pecica's bread might be the second Romanian traditional product to be protected in the European Union.
Each summer, on August 15th, in Pecica is a great celebration in honor of bread - The New Bread Feast.
It is said that who did not eat bread from Pecica it means that has not yet tasted a real bread.