Angela Zaporojan from Sibiu

Angela Zaporojan was born and spent part of her childhood in Russia, then she lived in Chișinău, and for 12 years she has lived in Sibiu, her ‘adoptive; city, as she calls it. For many years, she used to bake flatbread (‘turte’) and recently started baking bread, as she missed the ‘colaci’ she used to be able to buy at any store or bakery in Chișinău, Republic of Moldova. 

Her bread is always different, for she likes to try various combinations, and especially because, having lived in several places and cultures, she tries to translate them all into the food she cooks or bakes. When making bread, she uses white and wholegrain flour, usually a mix of the two, as well as yeast or bicarbonate of soda, depending on the bread she means to make. 

She likes all kinds of nuts, which she often adds to her bread doughs, as well as prunes or other ingredients she finds inspiring. For her, breadmaking is ‘A highly creative process; I don’t bake bread only for eating, but also because I enjoy the process, experimenting with things I think might work and seeing the results’. She also wants to try to make sourdough and rye bread, as well as chocolate and butterfly pea tea bread - which is purple on the inside. 

Her yeast bread-making process is as follows: ‘I make a mix of yeast, water, sugar and flour, leave it at warm temperature for about 10-15 minutes, then add the rest of the flour, salt and oil, knead it well, allow the dough to rise (at warm temperature) for about one hour this time. Meanwhile, I prepare the nuts, fruits, seeds and anything else I might want to add to my bread that day. Once the dough has risen, I quickly knead it again and add the nuts and fruits, cut it, shape it as a wreath or in any other desired form and place it into trays. I then play a little with the little piece of dough I always keep for decorating, while my bread rises for another while. When it’s decorated and risen again, I brush it with egg wash or black tea infusion. I put my bread in the preheated oven (with no open fire) and only turn the gas on about 30-35 minutes later. Once it’s out of the oven, I cover my bread with towels and let it cool slowly’. 

After baking bread, when she feels very hungry, she makes ‘pampuște’, as her grandparents in Bessarabia used to call them: ‘I tear bite-sized pieces of the hot bread and toss them in simple garlic sauce (garlic, salt, oil and water)’.

A Tale of Bread

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