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In Romania, we make a clear distinction between Supa, Ciorba and Bors.

Supa (Soup) is the un-soured base, Ciorba is sour (usually soured with lemon) and Bors (Borscht) is soured with an wheat bran based fermented liquid by the same name. :)

The word "ciorba" comes from Turkish "çorba": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chorba

Ciorba arrived on the table of the Romanians on a historical whim, being boiled first in the kettles and boilers of the Sipahi troops of the Ottoman Empire. It was so closely related to the image of the troops of the Ottoman military that the heads of the regiments of the Sipahi were known as "ciorbagii", perhaps because by their tent was always near the canteen, where the best tripe or ram soups were made, flavoured with leaves of mint, added vegetables, pepper and for ornament, parsley.

Tracing the name you can observe with precision the route of the Ottoman conquests. Greeks call it τσορβάς (ţorbas), Bulgarians cook tchorba, a.s.o. I asked some of my Hungarian colleagues if they also have the word in their language and they do... but only designating a single, special type of soup: tripe (in my opinion the quintesence of çorba). The regular word for soup in Hungarian is "leves" and being weirdos, they have another special word for cabbage soup: "lucskos".

In Poland we have zupa (soup), barszcz (borscht) and flaki (which is similar to your ciorba I think).

Additionally, in Poland, by my count there're at least four different soups made from beetroot - barszcz czerwony (eaten traditionally with "uszka" dumplings, without sour cream), barszcz ukrainski (eaten with vegetables and beans), chlodnik (cold soup, eaten with cream) and another barszcz czerwony (hot soup, eaten with cream). Poland has LOTS of soups

And also barszcz biały, litewski, francuski, jabłkowy, ogórkowy and of course, the most important: barszcz do picia :)

Oh and then there's also czernina, which basically is a soup made of duck blood.

Supa has western European etymology, and chorba was the word brought by the Ottomans. Not sure about Romania, but throughout the Balkans the difference in meaning is mostly in the connotation of a degree of sophistication (supa:chorba is as city:village).

I thought that Ciorba is only soured with lemon when you can’t get fermented cabbage juice? Maybe it depends on the region?

I've never had Romanian food but you piqued my interest now.

It's probably hard to find, depending on where you live.

I'd personally recommend the "ciorba de perisoare" (soup with meatballs) "ciorba de fasole cu afumatura" (bean soup with pork) and "ciorba de burta" (if you're willing to have an open mind when trying it, the taste is very good; it's tripe soup).

ciorba is also made with sour/fermented milk (chișleag/clabber)

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