Caraway is one of those ingredients you either love or hate. It can be used in various ways, for instance in breads and pastries, but you can make a soup or even a cake out of it. In Hungary, it is often added to pastries, but many of our staple dishes contain it, too, contributing to the strong flavours.
Caraway became widespread in Europe in the 13th century. It has numerous health benefits. For instance, it helps with digestion, reduces bloating and colic, and it also gets rid of bacteria and fungi. Due to its health benefits, it is also often made into tea.
Perhaps the most famous Hungarian meal is the goulash, known and loved worldwide. Goulash was originally the meal of herdsmen, but by today, it managed to conquer the whole world. The delicious mixture of meat, potatoes, vegetables, and the spice paprika make it an irresistible choice. You can either prepare it as a stew or rather as a soup, too, depending on what you are up for. Caraway seeds, wine, and tomatoes are optional, but you will not regret adding them if you want a bit of an extra kick to your dish.
To read more about this famous meal, click here.
Potato paprikash has very similar ingredients as the goulash, except is contains sausages and not beef or pork. So, it is no surprise that caraway seeds appear in its list of ingredients as well. However, since it is such a divisive spice, adding it is optional here, too. Potato paprikash is great in the summer months as it is relatively easy to make, and if you want to, you can even make it outside, too, in a cauldron at a campfire with friends, perhaps, or after a nice excursion.
For a modern take on the recipe, click here.
Pogácsa, the Hungarian version of a scone, often accompanies Hungarian soups like bean soup a la Jókai or the goulash. Or, you can eat it as a snack from bakeries. There are many varieties you can choose from. Sesame seeds, caraway seeds, or poppy seeds are often sprinkled on top. The inside can be spruced up by adding some ham or bacon. Pogácsa also often appears in Hungarian fairy tales as the dish the characters take with them on their quest.
If you want a recipe to make it at home, click here.
Sometimes, it feels nice to have just some slices of fresh bread with delicious homemade spreads and to not have to worry about cooking. There are some delicious homemade spreads Hungarians love, which are also easy to make at home. The Hungarian cottage cheese spread (körözött), for instance, contains ingredients like cottage cheese, sour cream, paprika, and caraway seeds that make a heavenly combination. A greaves spread (tepertőkrém) is not only delicious but also has numerous health benefits.
To make either at home, click here.
In Hungary, there is a great tradition of making pickled foods. This way, there is always some vegetable on the table even in the winter period. There are numerous health benefits to preserving vegetables this way: it eases digestion, and pickled foods are rich in vitamins, minerals, and fibres. Leavened cucumbers are very popular, but so is pickled beetroot or pickled cabbage. For three amazing recipes you can make at home this summer, click here.
Source: Daily News Hungary