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Sărățele: 3 Ingredient Romanian Cheese Sticks

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These 3 ingredient Romanian cheese sticks are an easy spin on a classic Romanian recipe. Known as sărățele in Romanian, they have a crisp exterior and a chewy interior with flakey layers of cheesy flavour.

These 3 ingredient Romanian cheese sticks are an easy spin on a classic Romanian recipe. Known as sărățele in Romanian, they have a crisp exterior and a chewy interior with flakey layers of cheesy flavour. They’re truly a crowd pleaser and this recipe makes enough for 6 people to nibble during your next gathering. Or you can keep all the cheesy goodness for yourself and store them in a sealed tupperware for up to a week (though I doubt they’ll last that long so if you’re watching your weight then be forewarned they are addictive!)

The word sărățele comes from the diminutive of the word for sărate or salted, so the name translates literally to little salties leaving something lost in translation for sure. But Google tells me the word translates less literally to crackers, which is a much better approximation.

Romanians are a nation of savoury pastry lovers and usually it’s variations on the theme of cheese and pastry. It’s hard to argue with that combination – who doesn’t love cheese and pastry?

The main categories of cheese pastries in Romania are more or less full-sized pies known as plăcintă like this savoury feta pie with homemade phyllo , little single serving cheese pastries called pateuri, and simple cheese sticks like the ones featured here.

Cheese sticks are ubiquitous throughout Romania. They’re made by grannies, home cooks, and trendy patisseries alike. They also come in a ton of different shapes and sizes.

Likewise there are also a ton of different recipes out there. Some recipes are slightly more complex than others, involving more ingredients in the dough including sour cream, eggs, and specific types of cheese. For me personally the difference is negligible and I like having an easy to-go recipe for sărățele that I can throw together when we have friends coming by for game night.

These 3 ingredient Romanian cheese sticks are an easy spin on a classic Romanian recipe. Known as sărățele in Romanian, they have a crisp exterior and a chewy interior with flakey layers of cheesy flavour.

There are a lot of cheese sticks on the shops in the Netherlands (many more than there were in Canada or the US when I lived there) but still, homemade always wins. The flavour and texture of homemade cheese sticks just can’t be beat by even the best store-bought varieties.

More savoury treats:

While these do take a little bit of time to roll out and cut, the mixing and baking are quick and uncomplicated so overall it’s a painless and foolproof process.

How to make 3 ingredient Romanian cheese sticks

Ingredients

  • 300 grams flour (or approx. 2.5 cups)
  • 350 grams mascarpone (or approx. 1.5 cups)
  • 200 grams finely grated cheese (or approx. 1 and 3/4 cups)

It couldn’t be simpler.

Preheat the oven to 160 C / 320 F. Grate the cheese.

Type of cheese: you can use any type of hard cheese. I’ve used feta, parmesan, and cheddar with equal effects. You can also mix different types together.

Mix the grated cheese, flour and mascarpone together. You can do this by hand or with the paddle attachment of a stand mixer. I haven’t tried a food processor but it could overmix so tread carefully.

Salt to taste: Depending on the type of cheese you use, you may need more salt so it’s good to give it a taste at this point.

After mixing until combined turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Roll out with a rolling pin and cut into 4 equal parts. Take one piece to work on and set the other 3 aside. You may want to cover them with a cloth or bowl to prevent drying out.

Roll the dough out into a roughly rectangular shape until a bit thinner than pie crust – about 2-3mm. Then use something with a straight edge like a cutting board to first straighten the uneven bits on the top and bottom edges (set that dough aside to roll out at the end) and then to cut the dough into strips approximately 1/2 centimeter thick.

The length of the sticks is up to you and the size of your oven. Really long ones can be a lot of fun.

Once the strips are cut arrange them on a lined baking sheet fairly close together as shown in the picture above.

Toppings: Toppings can add some nice pops of flavour but they’re totally optional. Traditional toppings include sesame seeds, caraway seeds, and poppy seeds.

To get the toppings to stick you can either lightly brush each stick with water and sprinkle on the seeds or otherwise use an egg wash.

Different shapes

You can use this same recipe to cut out different shapes for different times of year like I did with stars and snowflakes over the holidays. You can also make them a little thicker or even layer in more cheese. Anything goes!

 

Yield

Regarding the yield – I have a relatively small European apartment oven so my baking trays are approximately 30 by 40 centimeters. A standard ruler is about 30 cm for reference. So if I end up with 3 trays on my small baking sheets you may end up with 2 in a conventional sized oven.

This equals around 90 / 9cm long cheese sticks – but of course it depends how long you cut them and how thick you roll them out.

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Sărățele: 3 Ingredient Romanian Cheese Sticks

These fish tacos with mango salsa and creamy white lightning sauce are full of vibrant flavours layered together to create a perfect bite. Made with baked fish and lots of fresh ingredients, they’re healthy but they taste like pure indulgence. All for only 400 calories and 10 grams of fat per serving of 3. The best part is that they’re quick and easy to make. Fish tacos are the answer to boring weeknight meals.

These 3 ingredient Romanian cheese sticks are an easy spin on a classic Romanian recipe. Known as sărățele in Romanian, they have a crisp exterior and a chewy interior with flakey layers of cheesy flavour. They’re truly a crowd pleaser and this recipe makes enough for 6 people to nibble during your next gathering. Or you can keep all the cheesy goodness for yourself and store them in a sealed tupperware for up to a week

  • Author: Cristina
  • Prep Time: 40
  • Cook Time: 12
  • Total Time: 52 minutes
  • Yield: 90 sticks 1x
  • Category: Snacks
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: Romanian
Scale

Ingredients

  • 300 grams flour (or approx. 2.5 cups)
  • 350 grams mascarpone (or approx. 1.5 cups)
  • 200 grams cheese (or approx. 1 and 3/4 cups)
  • 1 tablespoon each white and black sesame seeds (optiona)
  • 1 egg for eggwash (optional)

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 160 C / 320 F.
  • Mix all the ingredients together by hand or with a paddle attachment of a stand mixer.
  • Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Roll out with a rolling pin and cut into 4 equal parts. Take one piece to work on and set the other 3 aside.
  • Roll the dough out into a roughly rectangular shape until a bit thinner than pie crust – about 2-3mm. Trim the top and bottom edges and then cut the dough into strips approximately 1/2 centimeter thick and 9 cm long.
  • Lay out the strips onto a baking tray and apply water or eggwash and seeds if using.
  • Bake in preheated oven for 12 minutes or until golden.
  • Repeat with remaining dough. At the end combine then roll out all the scraps and cut them freehand into strips.

Keywords: Romanian, saratele, cheese sticks

2 Comments

  1. Gave a try to the recipe n was extremely 😞. I don’t know if my godmom made it with sheep cheese/branza de burduf as it is called in Romania. Could only taste the cumin …
    I understand how difficult,if not impossible to obtain same taste results using completely different tasting ingredients. I ll only eat them cuz I put time,effort n money into them,otherwise I d trash them
    Guess it depends on each s taste n also how far from what one was used to…
    Thank u despite how they turned out for me🙏
    Good luck with ur improvisations

    • Hey Gabriela. Unfortunately the cheese really makes a big difference in the outcome and of course if you’re accustomed to sărățele made with very flavourful brânză de burduf then yes, using a milder cheese will allow the flavor of the seeds to come through (especially if you’re using a stronger tasting seed like cumin). In Dobrogea we don’t usually use brânză de burduf in sărățele but it sounds fantastic. I’ll have to give it a try to see what you’re missing in this recipe. All the best Gabriela.

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