The quaint town is gearing up for its tenth Böllér Festival this year, promising a truly unforgettable experience. With offerings to suit everyone except vegans and vegetarians, this programme is set to captivate attendees of all ages.
In recent years, pig slaughtering has evolved from its traditional role in food production into a great opportunity to delve into the community spirit and Hungarian heritage. This is the goal of the Murakeresztúr Festival too, where each year contestant teams compare their knowledge and artfulness in pig slaughtering, while advocating a Hungarian tradition that goes back centuries. As the largest culinary festival in Zala County, and with the added perk of being completely free, it draws thousands of visitors each year. Endorsed by the Hungarian National Gastronomic Association, it offers a genuine glimpse into the rich culture and unique customs of the people living in the Mura region.
A century-old tradition
Pig butchering holds a cherished place in Hungarian tradition, which has also earned itself a role in the history and the culinary landscape of the country. Tracing its roots back to the earliest mentions of pig slaughtering in our nation during the occupation of the Carpathian Basin, the tradition flourished over subsequent centuries, attaining its current stature in the 19th century. Originally a practice predominantly among the peasantry, it has evolved into the social spectacle we celebrate today.
The start of something great
For many people living in the Hungarian countryside, pig slaughtering is not just a tradition but a way of life. This sentiment holds true for the community leader of Murakeresztúr too, who started the festivals as a hobby-project a decade ago, watching it blossom into the popular annual event it is now. As someone with a rural background, he recognised the importance of bringing the community together and preserving tradition. What began as a local affair quickly garnered regional appeal, attracting participants even from Croatia. This year, ten teams are expected to participate, each preparing their own pig to compare their skills in the most authentic way. Collaborating closely, organisers and contestants alike strive to preserve the event’s intimate ambiance. While there are many teams that consistently return for the festival, fresh faces appear every year, writes Blikk. This diversity ensures that the visitors can get a taste from every region and their culinary delights.
The festival welcomes everyone who’s interested, and it’s peppered with programmes throughout Saturday. From daybreak until midnight, attendees of the Murakeresztúr Festival can partake in a variety of engaging programmes. The little ones can enjoy a playhouse, craft workshops and face painting as well as a special afternoon concert by the Pitypang band. Meanwhile, adults can marvel at the teams’ skills and learn about the traditional and contemporary pig slaughtering and sausage-making techniques, complete with top-notch Hungarian recipes. As for those who are less keen on the intricacies of pig slaughter, colourful concerts abound throughout the day, featuring acts such as the Edda Tribute, the Retroleum band and members of the Neoton family. It’s looking to be an eventful Saturday!
This could also interest you:
please make a donation here