We had Yanshuo over to lunch on saturday to prepare his own farewell meal :P
All Hungarian food, of course, since we met in Budapest for the first time (second time for LZ) and started being good friends there.
I made the gulyasleves on Friday night in the slow cooker – the meat was sauteed in paprika and fennel seed (sposed to be caraway, like anyone can find that here) in the wok first, which made it stay cubic despite the slow cooker. This was not real authentic, probably because I couldn’t get fresh Hungarian paprika – as in the actual pepper, not paprika powder (not that the paprika powder was authentic either!!!). In the English world it is known as Hungarian Wax Pepper and could not be found in any supermarkets in singapore (the Hungarian demographic way smaller than the latino demographic). LZ suspects the same recipe would taste authentic if created in Budapest, simply cause of the availability of ingredients. Oh well! I probably have to do a whole lot of tweaking to the recipe to make it palatable but I won’t be making this again anytime soon – it tasted more mexican than anything (and actually the ingredients are pretty similar to beef barbacoa)
Yanshuo was in charge of the csirke paprikas, or chicken in paprika sauce. The gravy was really thick, compared to what I prepared with my Hungarian class – probably we did it right this time, because Yanshuo is a competent cook and in general I don’t trust the cooking of the day to day American. This tasted pretty good, although the sour cream seems to dilute the taste of the gravy a little. We also bought too much chicken for lunch and too little chicken for lunch and dinner.
Liangze was in charge of the uborkasalata, or sliced cucumber in a vinegar based dressing :P While buying the groceries for this meal (which fed 10 people – 6 for lunch and 4 for dinner for < $50), we discovered artificial white vinegar and regular white vinegar – anyone knows the difference?
The uborkasalata tasted the most similar to what Klara used to serve for dinner :) probably due to the simplicity of the recipe and the type of ingredients called for.
For carbs I made some pogacsa – or bacon and parmesan scones. The dough was done in the breadmaker, then the scones were shaped by hand.
I thought these were the best part of the meal – savory, hot out of the oven (I timed them to be done just before we started to eat), buttery, and great for dipping in the gulyasleves or csirke paprikas sauce. This recipe was from the BBC, and my mum loved them.
The AMK Fairprice Xtra was out of phyllo dough – sigh! So I bought spring roll skins instead – much cheaper, and only slightly thicker. I brushed each sheet liberally with a mixture of sour cream and vegetable oil to get them to brown and crispy in the oven – it worked, but I’d put too many layers for the almas retes (Apple strudel – the way it’s made and served in Germany, Hungary, most of continental Europe, which is nothing like the kind we have at Ritz Apple Strudel (which tastes way better, in my opinion, and that of most singaporeans) – like the first time Mariko brought me to the Strudel House at Arany Janos utca and we ordered some poppy seed strudel we were majorly disappointed at the flakiness of the pastry and the ratio of filling to pastry.
I forgot to bring some over to his house for dinner last night! So my parents had to finish the two gigantic spring rolls with apple filling masquerading as Almas Retes. It wasn’t too bad, liangze liked it a lot. For some reason Hungarians like their apple filling grated, instead of cubed, like in American apple pie – so making almas retes makes making apple pie look positively easy. We had to squeeze all moisture out of the grated apples though, enough to fill one jam jar with apple juice and it tasted pretty good! Like mulled apple cider (cause the grated apple was stewed with cinnamon and sugar as well).