This is probably my last post for a while - I'm going away for a bit - so I figured I'd make good on my promise and deliver another food-related post about something that's been irking me for some time now. Fucking Romanian shaorma.
You see, Romanian shaorma is a breed of its own. It has almost nothing to do with trve Turkish/Arabic shawarma. Instead, it is a grotesque mutation of an otherwise perfectly harmless and delicious meal, engineered by greasy fast-food joint owners in Romania. The Romanian shaorma's origin is lost to us, but I can only assume some fat asshole ate a Turkish shawarma then thought to himself: Gee, that tasted pretty good, I'm gonna sell these in Romania. Except, let's see if I can figure out a way to use the cheapest ingredients possible so I can turn in a healthy profit because I'm a greedy gypsy. So next, I will walk all you fortunate folk who are ignorant through what is and makes a Romanian shaorma. Let's proceed in a highly organized manner.
Name: Nobody in Romania knows how this dish is spelled. Thus, you can buy it under a heap of different names, including, but not limited to, shaorma, shawarma, shawerma, shewerma, shevarma and şaorma. Another name Romanians use is kebab, because the only difference is that the kebab is served in a bun. We have no idea what's going on.
Where to get it: EVERYWHERE. Literally. Every town in Romania has at least 50 sketchy places with doubtful hygiene that sell this gastronomic abomination. No matter where you go, you're bound to run into a fast-food place that sells shaorma. Even more so in Bucharest and in the cities by the sea - Constanţa, Eforie, Costineşti, whatever - where shaorma joints are so many that the unwashed gourmands are having a hard time picking their favorite place. I suppose it's hard choosing one smelly, cockroach infested dirty hut over the other. One staple of Romanian shaorma places is that each table has a grimy set of mayo/ketchup bottles that are refilled constantly with gooey, disgusting substances of uncertain origin that come in huge buckets. Yum!
Who sells it: Usually, shaorma place owners are fat Makedons sporting thick gold chains and track pants who enjoy shouting obscenities at their under-educated, under-paid employees and who'd rather lose an arm than spend one extra coin on better ingredients.
How much: Romanian shaorma is pretty cheap - around 2 dollars or so - with the notable exception of the ones being sold in Bucharest. Apparently, Bucharest fast-food owners think their shaorma is the shit, as they're not uncomfortable charging even twice that amount for it. Anyone who pays upwards of 20 RON for a shaorma is an idiotic pig.
When to eat it: Anytime. In Romania, it is socially acceptable to eat shaorma at any time of day or night. Shaorma for lunch and the 4 AM shaorma are particularly popular options. It is also acceptable to order shaorma at work, because fuck your coworkers.
The recipe: You know how traditional Turkey/Arabic shawarma recipes call for some delicious hot pita bread that's soft and puffy and it's a joy to eat by itself? LOL FUCK DAT. Romanian shaorma is made using cheap store-bought pitas that come in a bag and have the taste and texture of cardboard. Then comes a good dollop of shitty mayonnaise, followed by a fistful of greasy fries that have been cooking in burnt oil. Sounds good so far? Well keep reading! Next comes the meat, which wouldn't be that bad by itself, except that it's super dry and pretty bland. On top of the meat, the sweaty guy piles on a bunch of equally sweaty pre-cut vegetables like tomatoes, cucumbers and shredded cabbage, which is about the most boring combination I could ever think of. As a finishing touch, a squirt of some of that disgusting ketchup that's half-ketchup, half-tap water, so you can be sure you're taking it up the ass with each bite. Finally, the whole thing is wrapped up in tin foil and served to you on a silver platter. And by that, I mean a dirty plastic tray, which you then take to your table and start eating while dodging the hordes of flies roaming around the restaurant.
The aftermath: After you're done eating your shaorma, you drive your second-hand bought BMW with a billion miles on it back home, start blasting your best-of manele compilation, beat your girlfriend, take a huge shit and go to bed.
The conclusion: Romanian shaorma is fucking horrible and it should be banned. Nothing good ever came out of eating a Romanian shaorma, except awful people getting their wallets stuffed with the money of the uneducated assholes who scarf these down like there's no tomorrow. It's a disgusting dish and anyone who willingly spends money on it is, in fact, admitting that they have no self-respect and dignity. FOK JULLE NAAIERS!
|The bane of the civilized world.|