Romania! The Documentary – Episode 5

Well, at long last Episode 5 is now available for your viewing pleasure :)

For those of you who aren’t mathematically challenged, you might wonder what happened to Episode 4 and you’d be right :P The truth is that a few technical issues were driving me nuts with clipping so many interviews (plus adding subtitles) that I just wrapped up Episode 5 and will finish Episode 4 here shortly.

In the clip above you can see the ever charming Daniela cook a very traditional Romanian dish called “ghiveci” (ghee-vetch), which besides being incredibly tasty is also vegetarian. Isn’t it nice how things work out like that? :)

Interestingly enough, the word ghiveci also means a “flower pot” or perhaps “flower vase” in some situations. A “planter” or a “pot” that you would grow flowers or other plants in is ghiveci in Romanian.

The word ghiveci comes from a Turkish word of nearly-identical pronunciation (although different spelling, natch) that would translate to “stew” in English. Alas, I’ve never been to Turkey so I have no idea if they have a similar dish in their culture or not.

On a technical note, the release of the episodes is going to slow down a bit because I am beginning to have some rather large problems with editing, rendering and transcoding such lengthy files on my very, very old computer. Little glitches and other things I’d like to fix just are beyond my capabilities at the moment and are seriously frustrating me because I’ve got all this wonderful footage and can’t produce it in the way I’d like for all of you to see.

Yesterday I went to the official Apple store here in Unicorn City and got pissed off as they tried to pull a classic bait and switch on me. I guess American capitalism is alive and well here in Romania :P Nonetheless, until I get my hands on a more powerful computer that can handle such heavy-duty video editing in a timely manner, I’m going to need more time to click and wait with the machines I have for now.

In the future I will go back and polish up the previous episodes and get them exactly how I want them and fix some of the nagging issues I’ve been having. I know some of you don’t care too much one way or the other but I’ve spent hundreds and hundreds of hours filming, traveling, conceiving the shots and footage plus rendering, editing and transcoding and I’m enough of a perfectionist to want it to come out exactly the way I want, not just almost. Only then can I truly feel good about putting my name on it.

Enjoy the video of ghiveci and try cooking it yourself if you’ve never tasted it. It’s a dish that anyone over the age of 12 can cook without ingredients you can only get in Romania, fancy techniques, equipment or skills. I know some of you are old veterans of cooking ghiveci but for the newcomers I left in the footage of exactly how to perform every step.

Of course you can’t “smell” through the video but the delightful aroma of the green peppers (Australian English: capsicums) will fill your house and leave all hands salivating to have a bite, I promise :) As for the batch prepared in the film, I ate a whole plate. Delicious!