Note: This edition of The Hungarian Cookbook has been updated to include Metric equivalents.
Fascinating recipes are presented in The Hungarian Cookbook—intriguing and rewarding—to lure the adventurous American homemaker into the realm of foreign cookery.
The Hungarian daily meal pattern consists of an early but light breakfast, followed by “Tízórai,” a more hearty, satisfying breakfast about 10 o’clock. The noon meal is usually the main meal of the day, then a snack in the middle of the afternoon, usually coffee with a piece of rich pastry or coffee cake. The supper is lighter than the noon meal, but on special occasions it may be more elaborate, including appetizers. To accompany their meals, Hungarians customarily drink beer or Tokay, the wine of the country. They also consume large quantities of coffee—plain, diluted with milk or topped with a generous fluffy mound of whipped cream.
The origin of Hungarian foods is not altogether clear. Some foods date back to the days of the Magyar tribes migrating across the Hungarian Plain. Turkish influence is felt by their introduction of paprika—scarcely 100 years ago.
Hungarian main dishes are savory with seasonings—a delicate touch of fiery red, but mildly sweet, paprika or an occasional surprise flavor of dill or caraway seed—and satisfying with the delicious richness that sour cream can lend.