A couple weekends ago I went on a day trip into the Hungarian countryside. One of my Hungarian friends invited me, along with a couple others, to their summer home. It was such a nice break from the city!
Her parents were the most generous hosts – they were so kind in opening their house to us. They didn’t speak much English and we had very limited Hungarian, but a lot can be said through smiles and gestures. Of course my friend did a lot of translating, but the language barrier didn’t seem to cause too many problems.
The day started off early with a bus ride from Budapest. It took about an hour and a half to get to where we were going. The bus literally dropped us off in the middle of nowhere. If my friend wasn’t there to pick us up at the stop, we would not have known where to get off.
From the moment we arrived to the moment we left all we did was eat. The house was located by a small river where my friend’s father would go fishing. We went to check out the water, and you could see the bottom. The fishes were so small!
Our first course of the day was fish soup with freshly caught fish. This was the first time I’ve had Hungarian fish soup. This particular dish is supposedly very famous and is one of the things that are a must try when in Hungary.
It was good, but I didn’t like the fish in it. The fish tasted very fishy and I don’t really like fishy fish (I know, strange). The coolest part was how it was made. The fish was warmed up in an outdoor gas stove.
The second course was a mix of dishes. We had two salads – one Greek the other French. We had two meat dishes. One was a pancake with a pork inside called hortobágyi palacsinta. The other was a bread with some pork knuckle inside. That was so delicious! Yum! And to go with everything, we had pickled veggies – everything from cauliflower to paprika to pickles.
This massive meal was followed by a variety of desserts. I don’t really remember what they were, but they were all delicious! My favourite of the bunch is probably the one with the white filling and brown top (seen at the bottom of this plate). One thing I really like about Hungarian desserts are that they’re not overly sweet like the ones back home. They’re the perfect way of ending a meal on a sweet note.
For most of the afternoon we talked and just soaked in the sun. They had a swing bench and it was so nice and relaxing to sit on it and swing while talking about the most random topics possible.
We were going to take the bus home that night, so we got started on dinner relatively early. Dinner was a Hungarian specialty – lángos! It is a deep fried dough covered in sour cream and cheese. It may sound disgusting, but I assure you it is the most delicious thing in the world. Perfect after a night out.
The homemade version was so much better than any of the ones I’ve had at a store. I must get this recipe and try it on my own! Yum!
The day was such a nice change from the hustle and bustle of Budapest. It was very relaxing to go out and just enjoy the sun and the trees. The food was amazing and it was such an experience to see it from a Hungarian’s point of view. My friend it was like as if we were going home to the parents for the weekend. We left completely satisfied and full. Each of us left with a jar of marmalade and grapes cut from their yard. They were so nice to open their homes to all of us foreigners and allowed us a glimpse into what they like to do and eat.
It was the perfect day.
Adelina’s note: This post was originally written a couple weeks ago, but lacked the finishing touches. This actually happened on the first weekend of October, which turned out to be the last decent weekend of the year. What a way to spend it!