Moldovan Chicken Soup

Um, yeah. Moldovan Chicken Soup (or Zeama) is THE BEST THING EVER.

And so totally easy. I keep saying this about many of the things I’ve cooked so far for this blog, but I will be making this recipe all of the time. Trust me – it’s a winner.

All ingredients for this meal were purchased at Findlay Market.

Both recipes in this post are adapted from

Traditional Chicken Noodle Soup – ZEAMA

The original recipe calls for fresh, handmade noodles.
I used angel hair pasta from Ohio City Pasta (Findlay Market location)you can find a recipe for homemade noodles under the Miscellaneous category on

Fresh herbs are essential here. I’m sure you would end up with a tasty soup if you use dried, but it would be a significantly different thing…


  • 1 smaller whole chicken (about 3lb), cut up
  • about 12 cups (3 quarts) water
  • 3 teaspoons salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 medium onion
  • carrot
  • 1/2 big fresh tomato
  • about 2 cups homemade egg noodles
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped medium celery stalk (reserve celery leaves, if any)
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh dill weed
  • 3-4 small branches fresh thyme


  1. Saute the onion and carrots until soft in a dutch oven or deep stock pot. Add the chicken and water then bring to a boil. Turn heat down to medium-low heat  and simmer for about 45 minutes to an hour (will depend on chicken). Skim any froth.
  2. Add salt, black pepper, tomato and celery.
  3. Cook for 5 minutes. Add the egg noodles and lemon juice.
  4. Continue cooking on medium-low for about 5 more minutes.
  5. Add the fresh herbs (including celery leaves, if any).
  6. Cover, remove from heat. Let stand for at least 30 minutes to let flavors blend.

Serving Suggestion:

Moldovans usually serve Zeama with a traditional corn bread called Mamaliga. My first attempt was a complete failure, but I’ll try again one of these days with this recipe

(image by Todd Farmer)

Moist Cherry Nut Bread

I’m allergic to walnuts and pecans, which is a total annoyance. Some recipes don’t do well with substitutions, but fortunately this one handles change nicely. I used almonds; walnuts are in the original recipe.


  • 2 cups milk (I used unsweetened vanilla almond milk)
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • eggs, beaten
  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • 2 cups chopped almonds
  • 1 21oz. can cherry pie filling (drained)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1-2 tablespoons vinegar
  • powdered sugar to sprinkle on top


  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Grease and flour a 13 x 9 baking pan.
  3. Place milk in a large bowl. Slowly add flour a little at a time, mixing on low.
  4. Add sugar and mix together well.
  5. Add beaten eggs, oil, almonds and cherries.
  6. Place baking soda in a regular tablespoon and spread.
  7. Slowly pour vinegar on top of baking soda, a little at a time, mixing every now and then, until baking soda stops reacting.
  8. Pour over the rest of ingredients and mix. Pour into prepared baking pan.
  9. Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until golden brown. This is moist, so the toothpick test might not be a great guide.
  10. Dust with powdered sugar and serve warm or cold.

Cherry Cake
(image by Todd Farmer)

4 thoughts on “Moldovan Chicken Soup

  1. Anne February 8, 2012 / 6:45 am

    Love the photos, Todd!

    Your house, and all the goodies in there, is a great backdrop to take photos in! Looking forward to seeing more 🙂

  2. eyes0penwide February 8, 2012 / 8:29 am

    Love the photos!

    And your house, with all the goodies in it, is a great backdrop for your food posts! Looking forward to seeing more

  3. Andrea February 8, 2012 / 11:01 am

    That soup looks yummy! I can almost smell the goodness pouring out. I’ll add it to my list 😉

  4. TheGlobalReader February 8, 2012 / 11:21 am

    Indeed! He’s improving this humble little blog immensely.

    Todd is now The Official Photographer for The Global Reader.

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