Toros Testa (Farmhouse Pasta)

This Hungarian classic is Hubby’s favourite go-to quickie meal!

Creamy ricotta cheese delicately embraces freshly cooked pasta with a twist of fried bacon & copious amounts of rich sour cream.

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Bring a pot of water to the boil, add salt & cook your pasta off before draining.

Meanwhile, dice 8 rashers of bacon & fry off all that porky goodness – you don’t necessarily need a splash of oil on this one if you’ve got a non stick pan as there’s a good amount of fat in the bacon.

Next, stir your drained pasta through the bacon in the frypan, then crumble through 300g of fresh ricotta cheese over a low heat. Give that lot a jolly good stir to mix thoroughly.

Finally, bung in a 350g tub of sour cream, stir until the sour cream is warmed through & It’s Chompin Time!

How easy is that one?!?!?!

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Layered Tatties

This is a recipe from my Mother in Law, which I’ve adapted.

Traditionally, in Hungary, they use cabbage rather than potatoes.

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Start by steaming some peeled whole potatoes until they’d pass for par-boiled then slice them up into thin discs.

Heat a wee splash of oil in a frypan & brown off 500g of mince (I use chicken mince but whatever type floats your boat is fine) along with a teaspoon of minced garlic. Remember to season generously with salt & white pepper.

Pop 1/2 cup of rice into a pot of boiling water & once cooked, drain & bung in with the mince, combining well.

Grab a nice baking dish & let’s layer up – tatties on bottom, then mince/rice mix, more tatties, more mince/rice mix etc making sure you end with tatties on top.

Next, make the sauce by simply combining 1/2 cup each of thickened cream & sour cream seasoned with salt, white pepper & paprika. Pour over the layers then simply drizzle extra thickened cream around the edges of the dish to ensure it remains nice & moist.

Whack that into a 200c oven for 40 minutes.

Paris Style Chicken Schnitzel

The title of this recipe is a literal translation of another Hungarian favourite that is quick, easy & oh so fabuliciouz!

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If you like french toast or eggy bread then this is taking that flavour concept to a whole new level!

All you need to do is grab some juicy chicken thighs, place between a couple of sheets of plastic wrap & then get some frustration therapy by banging the crap out of them until they’re beautifully tenderised & all an even thickness which should be a nice thin schnitzel.

Then you simply season lightly with salt & white pepper before dusting with flour & then dipping in a basic egg wash of whisked eggs & milk – I know, shock horror, it seems like the wrong way round but that’s how it’s done.

Very carefully slip the schnitzel into some hot oil over a medium heat to shallow fry each side until they are golden & the chook is cooked through. I just love how they puff up with the egg wash! You’ll need to turn them a few times during cooking.

Remove the cooked schnitzel to drain before you then dust & dip the next one so that the oil reheats & it goes straight in rather than sitting around.

Honestly, you simply must try this dead set easy tasty dish!

Chicken Paprikas

It’s Mini-Me’s Ballet Concert weekend!

That makes it all about sparkles, glitter & mum taxi duties for me as I rush her between final rehearsal, opening night & next day matinee! It’s an all out onslaught of a weekend!

Never fear, the in-laws are here!

So last night, we were treated to this wee Hungarian traditional number – check it out!

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Start off by heating up a glug of oil in a stock pot over a very gentle heat to fry off 2 finely chopped onions & 1 finely diced red capsicum together. When they’re just softened, add in a whole tablespoon of salt! Stir it well, the salt will help break them down even further.

When they’ve fully sweated down, bung in 1kg of chopped up chicken thigh. Combine it well & whack on a lid. You’ll be surprised just how much liquid comes out into the pot from all this!

Allow the chicken to slightly whiten before adding in a sliced chilli, 2 broken bay leaves (they release more flavour when you break them) & 1 teaspoon of minced garlic. Give that lot a jolly good stir & straight back on with the lid.

When the chicken has fully whitened, stir through 1 tablespoon of paprika then bring to the boil before chucking in a tin (410g) of crushed tomatoes. Use the same tin to splash in 1/4 tin full of water. Once again stir then whack that lid back on top.

Now we just wait until the chook is cooked all the way through, usually takes about a half hour from this point.

Serve this ‘soup’ like meal over freshly cooked pasta – Fabuliciouz!

Garlic Chicken Slice

This traditional Hungarian meal has been kindly passed on to me by the mother-in-law.

It’s rich, succulent & oh so fabuliciouz!

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Start with 4-6 juicy chicken thighs. Place onto a board & cover them in a plastic bag before using a meat pounder to take out any of the day’s frustrations (such as Melbourne traffic!) in order to get them all to a similar consistency, you don’t want to flatten them as they do need to maintain being thighs.

Season them ever so generously in salt & pepper then coat them in flour (I always use Gluten Free). Heat up some oil in a frypan to shallow fry, but not all the way to cooked stage, all you’re doing is firming up the crust & giving it a lovely golden colour.

By the time you’ve shallow fried all those thighs & have them off on a plate to the side, you’ll notice there’s not too much oil left in the pan, this is the base of our sauce! Let it cool down enough to add in 5 teaspoons of minced garlic to gently cook before seasoning generously with salt & pepper & then thickening it up with 2 heaped tablespoons of flour. It’s kind of like making a rue. Once the flour is cooked off (not very long) add in a cup of water & combine it really well to form the thick sauce. Bung the chicken thighs back in the pan & if you need to add more water to ensure the chicken is covered then do it now. Whack a lid on the pan & walk away for 20 minutes or until the chicken is cooked.

Serve this lusciously succulent chook over cooked rice.

Goulash

As you know, Hubby is Hungarian, this means he really enjoys a good feed of Goulash every now & then. With the temperature plummeting & rise in snowfall on the mountains around us, it’s the perfect time of year for me to whack one together.

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Now every region, & indeed every family, in Hungary have their own variation of the National Dish. Family ‘secrets’ abound about the Goulash & most cooks will jealously guard their recipe, always leaving out an essential ingredient when passing on the knowledge. This is the recipe, in full, that Hubby & I came up with for our wee fam-bam which all three of us hook into!

First heat up a good blob (about a tablespoon) of butter in a large pan & throw in 500g of diced chuck steak to just seal the meat, remembering to season generously with salt & white pepper.

Bung the sealed meat into a slow cooker before adding a tin (400g) of diced tomatoes, a tub (140g) of tomato paste, a few peeled & chopped carrots & potatoes along with a deseeded & diced red long horn pepper (if you can’t get your hands on one of those just use a red capsicum instead).

Stir through 3 overly generous tablespoons of paprika & season very well with salt & white pepper.

Make sure everything is mixed up well before whacking on the lid & cooking on low setting for about 7 hours. If you don’t have a slow cooker, then everything goes in the stock pot you’ve sealed the meat in, pop on a lid & gently simmer for 3 hours.

When time is up, use a big stick to make your way through the drooling neighbours who’ve gathered around your kitchen & add in a tub (300ml) of sour cream to stir through & make your Goulash really creamy.

Place butter tossed steamed potato chunks into large bowls then scoop the Goulash over the top & greedily devour to warm you up from the inside on a bitterly chilly evening.

Latkes

They’re quick, They’re easy &

They’re just what the doctor ordered after an overindulgence the night before!

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For those who haven’t heard of them before, Latkes are a fabuliciouz wee potato pancake. They’re great for brunch or as a starter at any BBQ. Check them out!

Start by peeling 4 large potatoes & grating those finely. Grab handfuls of the grated spuds & really wring them out over the sink to squeeze out as much liquid as you can. No need for the stress ball when you can make Latkes!

Bung the tatties into a mixing bowl, along with 2 whisked eggs & 6 tablespoons of plain flour before seasoning very generously with salt & pepper. That’s as far as the traditional flavourings go but I like to also add in a wee bit of paprika but I also know of all kinds of Latkes being made out there with chives or dill or whatever floats your boat really, experiment!

Mix it all up really well to combine.

Heat up a solid amount of oil in a large frypan as we’re going to shallow fry so not just a glug here.

Drop tablespoons of the mix into the hot oil & watch it just like a pancake, when the sides start to brown, flip it to cook the other side. It usually takes a couple of minutes each side to cook, depending on how hot your oil is.

Drain the Latkes on paper towel before serving hot with sour cream for dipping.

Cucumber Salad

This fresh summer salad is a classic all across Europe, albeit with regional variations, and can be found on every good cafe’s menu.

It’s quick, it’s easy & it’s fabuliciouz!

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Start by ever so finely slicing 2 continental cucumbers, a mandolin slicer makes this job so much easier! Generously salt them, then get your hands in there for a jolly good mix up! Set that aside for about half an hour.

When you come back to the cucumbers, the salt should of done it’s job in drawing a lot of the water out. This is when you need to grab dirty big handfuls & squeeze to wring them out completely.

Pop all that squeezed cucumber slices into a fresh bowl before adding in 3 teaspoons of minced garlic & just a splash of white vinegar. Mix that lot up thoroughly then simply taste it. You may find you need to adjust either the garlic or the vinegar to get the balance just right as every cucumber has a different amount of liquid in it so it pays to check before whacking this wee winner of a salad down in front of your guests.

Stroganoff

Stroganoff is such a simple meal to prepare, it’s creamy, it’s hearty & it’s fabuliciouz!

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Pop in a plastic freezer bag 500g of diced pork scotch fillet (or beef strips if that’s what floats your boat) along with a tablespoon of plain flour & a generous amount of salt & white pepper to season. Shake the shizen-howzen out of it to coat all the meat thoroughly. My 5 year old kitchen hand loves that job!

Next, heat a knob of butter in a deep saucepan & saute 8-10 finely sliced mushrooms until softened then remove & set aside.

Heat another knob of butter in the same saucepan & fry off the meat over a high heat until cooked, you may need to add more butter part way through if it starts to stick.

Return the mushrooms to the pan (along with all their luscious juices) & season with yet more salt & pepper before adding in 1 tablespoon of tomato sauce & a 300ml tub of sour cream. Stir gently to combine.

Traditionally, this would then be served over creamy mashed potato, but I prefer to stir through 250g of cooked pasta & then devouring greedily!

Broishoi

Hubby is Hungarian, from Mongolian decent, so he introduced me to an exciting cuisine from the Eastern European block.

Broishoi is their version of having chicken & chips.

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This totally makes sense to come up with something so fabuliciouzly tasty from such few ingredients, as every home had chickens & potatoes in the garden.

I find that necessity always produces greatness in the kitchen.

Start by peeling & dicing 8 large potatoes into about a 1 centimeter dice. Dice up 500g (usually about 4) chicken thighs into roughly the same size as the tatties.

Heat a good glug of oil in a wok (or large frypan) & brown off the chicken ensuring you season generously with salt, pepper, vegeta (1 tablespoon) & paprika (2 teaspoons). When the chicken is half cooked, add in 2 teaspoons of minced garlic. If you were to add that in any earlier, it’d just burn so do wait until half way through.

Meanwhile, start deep frying in stonking hot oil, the diced potato chips until they’re nice & golden brown. You all know how to fry a chip!

Transfer the cooked chips to the chicken before seasoning again with more salt, pepper & vegeta then give it a jolly good stir to combine & tuck in!