At the dining-room table, Elena and Sașa are preparing something. Elena has rolled the dough into spiral logs, then sliced them. Now she is carefully rolling the resulting nuggets into circles of dough. Sașa generously fills each with a spoonful of something, and pinches the sides to make a triangular pie. At first I think she is adding fruit filling, but on closer inspection and questioning, it turns out to be raw chicken bits and chopped onions, with a little pepper and salt.
My friends direct me to the kitchen, where previous batches are already baking. They smell wonderful, and the dough is turning a rich, flaky golden brown.
When I ask the name of these delicious little chicken-pie thingies, my host mom gets a puzzled look on her face.
After consulting with her friend, she tells me they don’t really have a name. That evening, the nameless but scrumptious tartlets are served at a family meal and I ask the name again. Nobody can say. Sașa’s sister jokingly names them Coteț de Găini (coh-tets day guh-ee-nee”)* which means “chicken coop”.