Hungarian cuisine is one of the outstanding elements of the Hungarian culture…

Hungarian cuisine is one of the outstanding elements of the Hungarian culture, which boasts a variety of creative dishes, unique and characteristic tastes. The influence of others nation being here influenced gastronomy in Hungary.

The Russian food can be split into three categories: before WWI, during Soviet Union era, and post-Soviet Union. The Soviet/Russian gastronomic traditions, is both respectful of tradition and innovative and novel as well. Over the 40 years of USSR occupation in Hungary, the touch of gastronomy also landed in the region.

Below some of the meals can still be discovered on the menüs in Budapest and throughout the regions in Hungary. Fortunately, the supply of Budapest is constantly expanding and finding exciting Russian restaurants/ StreetFood venues throughout the Capital.

Russian cuisine was fundamentally determined by three things: on the one hand, aristocratic strong French influences (eg. appetizers, varied garnishes) and, on the other hand, folk meals, collected and revived by traditional nobility mansions of the 1870’s and 1880’s mania (such as: soups, porridge and food borsch, shashlik etc….

Before we travel to the Russian food empire, let’s go back a bit in time with the USSR kitchen Made in Hungarian cuisine adopted from the Russian kitchen … One of the most known Russian meals  over the past decades is the “Stroganov’s tenderloin stew. It sounds Russian and many connected to it in Hungary. Anyway this meal has to be tasted during the stay in Budapest to find out how the Hungarian chefs gave that special touch in preparing that delicious taste.

The Stroganov’s tenderloin meal was not named after the person who invented the food, but was named after its first consumer. Sztrogoff Mihály – Michel Strogoff, as a Russian adventure story was shown in the early 1970’s on the Hungarian Television and the restaurants realized the series being so popular they prepared A’la porter house stew Sztrogoff Mihály style in their menü sheets.  (Michel Strogoff originally was based upon the novel from Gyula Verne. The series was a joint co-operation by Bulgarian, Italian, French and Germany, directed by Eriprando Visconti. … but that is another story, back to the Soviet/Russian gastronomy that determine the food in Hungary.

So in the late 1960s,  early 70s the Soviet recipes hit the road with more-and-more unique food to became popular in the country.

Some examples: Let’s go staring with the Soup – Salad soup recipe.

Ingredients: 2 servings … 1 head washed salad, 40 dkg smoked sturgeon side or knuckle, pepper, cumin. For mortar: 2T of sour cream, 1T flour, 3 dl milk. Preparation guide: 40 minutes … Smoked already cooked pork meat to add, no salt needed because the meat is salty. May serve it with grits.

Main dish – Tenderloin ragout in Stroganof-style.

Ingredents: for 4-5 persons  1/2 head onion, oil, 10 dkg bacon 20 dkg mushrooms, 20 dkg vinegar, cucumber, 70 dkg sirloin, 1 small box of condensed tomato, salt, pepper, caper, bay leaf, 3 tbs. flour 2 dl sour cream, 1/2 dl white wine, 1/2 lemon juice, rice, potatoes, toasted meal salted donuts. Preparation guide: roughly an hour or so … Chop the onion, fry in oil and add the stripped bacon, mushrooms, cucumber and sirloin. When thoroughly blushed, pour over the concentrated tomatoes. Add the flour, stir and pour the sour cream, wine and a little water. Add the lemon juice and add the peel for a while. Serve with rice, potatoes, salted donuts or toasted meal.

Sweet for sweet tooth lovers  – Túró Rudi (Cottage cheese Rudi) – Hungarian’s favorite treat!

It was first made in the Soviet Union in 1930, but its original version is said to have been known in the 19th century in the Altai Mountains. Soviet Rudi became popular in the 1950’s of its sweet vanilla flavor and crunchy chocolate frosting, the kids loved it.

The Túró Rudi history started back in 1954 for the Hungarians, when a group of three dairy industry experts visited the Soviet Union for a two-week field trip, where they were shown the Soviet product that was the ancestor of the present-day Túró Rudi. In all probability, this experience lent the idea to develop a product specially to suit Hungarian tastes since 1968. Different version are available at every store in Hungary … The original Túró Rudi has gone through many changes during the years, and many different manufacturer has its own Túró Rudi product.

In 1968, an idea to develop a product specially to suit Hungarian tastes in the form of a Kádár list of consumer culture concessions. They wanted to forget reprisals following the defeat of the 1956 revolution the “socialist man” standard of living for repair. In the former USSR and still today the Soviets still have their own curd bars. The bar is composed of a thin chocolate-flavored outer coating and an inner filling of túró – curd. The “Rudi” in the product name comes from the Hungarian “rúd”, which translates to rod or bar (and is also a nickname  for Hungarian name “Rudolf”. Túró Rudi can be made in different flavors and sizes. Túró Rudi was marketed as a “healthy dessert”, The bar is best kept refrigerated around 4 °C (39 °F). Therefore, by any chance get to feel homesick for Túró Rudi after leaving Hungary, the product had been released in Italy, China, Slovakia, Spain and UK under different names, but some share the name of DOTS since 2003.

Compiled by Aggie Reiter