Not all chilis are hot. Some are mildly sweet, others comfortably warming. Used in widely different cuisines on every continent, chilis originated in the Western Hemisphere. “Chili” itself comes from a Nahuatl word.
But I prefer the hot ones. In small quantities, not super hot, and preferably in flake form. I also enjoy videos of people eating chilis such as AyyOnline and this classic.
Oh, and for anyone who wonders why water doesn’t help when you’ve eaten a chili: it’s because the water spreads the capsaicin (the alkaline chemical that produces the burning sensation) across your mouth. Therefore you need an acid to neutralise it; drinks like milk (which contains lactic acid) and any citrus juice will help.
Our article on Hungarian chess master Paul Charles Dozsa has been quite popular (although we now know the man from the meme was actually Cecil George Edwards). But regardless, it got me thinking—what are the best dishes in Hungarian cuisine?
In this list, I’ll be looking at 5 recipes and dishes from Hungary.
1. Goulash (gulyás)
Let’s get goulash out of the way. In the realms of Hungarian cuisine, this dish is the one everyone thinks of. The name originates from gulyás, a word for “herdsmen”. It still means that but it also takes the meaning of the actual stew. There’s also gulyásleves which is a thinner soup than goulash.
Most modern recipes include tomatoes but they were nowhere to be seen in the original recipes. Meats in goulash recipes include lamb, pork, beef, and veal and a wide variety of vegetables such as onions, garlic, carrots and peppers. To quote my friend, Tom: “Goulash in a bread basket is also beautiful.”
Fun fact: Jonathan Harker ate chicken paprikash while he travelled to Dracula’s castle in Bram Stoker’s novel Dracula. (And in case you didn’t know, Transylvania was part of the Hungarian Empire until the 20th century.)
It’s another meat stew. Pörkölt is similar to goulash in that it contains meat (boneless), paprika, and vegetables. But the main difference between pörkölt and goulash is the latter has more gravy and the meats can contain bones.
Let me preface this by saying: I hate cherries. So the idea of a cold sour cherry soup is hell for me. But not for the Hungarian population so my opinion is invalid here.
Meggyleves is made with sour cherries (which come in 2 variants: Morello cherries and Amarelle cherries). It’s traditionally served as a dinner course, either as a starter, main soup or a dessert and it works best served during the summer.
Random fact: Turkey produced 187,941 tonnes of sour cherries in 2012, compared to Hungary’s 53,425 tonnes.
5. Spätzle (nokedli)
Spätzle, or nokedli, is a type of pasta made with fresh eggs, bread flour, and salt. The geographic origin of spätzle is unknown, leading to many nations claiming it as theirs.
The pasta is best known as a German delicacy but Hungarians love it and serve it with soup or you could have it with cherries in kirschspätzle.
You should also try:
Palacsinta (a thin crêpe-like variety of pancake)
Halászlé (a hot, spicy paprika-based fish soup)
Főzelék (a thick Hungarian vegetable stew or soup)
Dobosh (a Hungarian sponge cake)
Lángos (a deep fried flatbread although my friend Tom recommends to have it at a restaurant rather than a takeaway)
Hungarian cookbooks to buy
Enjoyed all the food? Want to nose dive into the world of Hungarian cuisine? Check out the list of books below and experience Hungary without leaving the comfort of your sofa. Well, you’ll have to make the short journey from there to the kitchen but someone’s got to do it.
I’ve given way too much money to Five Guys this year. I tried my hand at making one and, while it wasn’t the same, it was tasty nonetheless. The basic premise is the same for most modern burger outlets:
2 flattened beef patties
Cheese slices in between
An assortment of fillings (my faves are pickles, ketchup, and mustard)
American chef J. Kenji López-Alt made a video in March demonstrating his way of making a “late night smashed cheeseburger” in the style of a smashburger, as popularised by the fast food chain Smashburger.
My mouth watered throughout the video so stream it below and let us know what you’d have in your smashburger.
Forget everything you know about brewing Chinese tea as Goldthread has the inside scoop.
In their video, they look at the “right” way to brew Chinese tea, including the ceremonial process known as gongfu cha:
Gongfu means skill, and cha means tea. It’s a form of Chinese tea service that dates back to the 14th century in Fujian. It places emphasis on the tea’s taste, temperature, and quality.
The ceremony of gongfu cha is a far cry from the American TikToker who made tea in a microwave with a truckload of sugar and milk. If there was a spectrum of tea making, China and the US would be on either side.
You may remember our piece on the racist unravelling of Bon Appetit. Well, Jack Saint returned with highlights of his stream dissecting the return of Bon Appetit. Tl;dr: it’s been gutted, filled with more POCs in front of the camera, they barely addressed what happened, and when they did, it was like putting on a plaster on a gangrene wound.
That said, Jack goes in depth and the rawness of it having been live worked well alongside the plastic, corporate feel of the Bon Appetit reboot which didn’t work for me at all. Chris Morocco’s segment was particularly nauseating and those meatballs aren’t meatballs as far as I’m concerned. It’s nice to see more Black and Brown chefs being able to make dishes meaningful to them and discuss the stories behind them but it feels like too little to late (and that’s at no fault to the POCs making the food).
Stream the highlights below and you’ll see what I mean.
The classic White Russian cocktail comprises of vodka, a coffee liqueur and cream, served with ice. If you don’t have cream, milk will do. But what if you could make the vodka out of milk too? That’s where TMK Creamery comes in.
Todd Koch is the owner of TMK Creamery and his idea of making vodka from milk came after reading about Dr. Paul Hughes—an Assistant Professor of Distilled Spirits at Oregon State University— who had tested whether a way to ferment whey into a neutral spirits base solution that was “both environmentally sustainable and cost-effective for small creameries”.
Large, corporate-owned creameries can afford the expensive equipment that converts whey into profitable products such as protein powder. But at his family-owned, 20-cow farmstand creamery, Koch and his wife simply fed their whey into the fields through a nutrient management system. Rather than continue to bury the byproduct, Koch decided to ferment as a means of profitably upcycling the whey while bringing visibility to his animals. He teamed up with Dr. Hughes and a nearby distiller to manufacture the creamery’s newest product: a clear, vodka-like liquor they call “Cowcohol.”
But, according to Atlas Obscura, Koch isn’t the only “cowcohol” distiller in the world.
There’s a dairy farmer from West Dorset who makes Black Cow Vodka from whey.
Despite the inedible qualities of Homer’s moon waffles, they never failed to make hungry. So I was thrilled when I found Binging with Babish had attempted to make them—the “official” way and the Babish way.
For those unaware of Homer Simpson’s “Patented Space Age Out-Of-This-World Moon Waffles”, they appeared in the episode “Homer the Heretic” (S4E03) when Homer skips church and discovers the freedom of a Sunday morning. On one Sunday morning, he makes some waffles with the following ingredients:
1 waffle iron (which will be ruined by the end)
1 bag of waffle batter
1 bag of caramel cubes
1 bottle of liquid smoke
1 stick of butter
1 wooden skewer
When Babish tried it, it didn’t turn out so well for his tastebuds or his waffle iron (RIP). But he did make a Babish variant which looked significantly better.
Of all the things I remember from Pulp Fiction, the $5 shake that Mia Wallace ordered isn’t one of them. But you can’t spell insignificant without significant and Binging with Babish tried to recreate it.
The issue was getting the total cost of the ingredients up to $5 and making it taste that way and in true Babish style, he pushed the boat out with multiple variations of increasing costs.
The final attempt was decadence beyond the realms of human decency but, hey, it sounded like it tasted good. I wonder how Babish would do with an expensive Boston Cooler.
I always thought Salt Bae was an overrated gimmick thing but I’ve watched this compilation and I’m more of a fan and incredibly hungry.
Salt Bae, real name Nusret Gökçe, is a Turkish butcher, chef, and owner of Nusr-Et, a chain of steak houses. In 2017, his famous Ottoman Steak video went viral and he became known as Salt Bae, due to the way he sprinkled salt on his meat.
His unorthodox style of cutting and cooking meat is almost mesmerising, if not poor kitchen etiquette. But it’s all for the ‘Gram and he’s served for the likes of David Beckham, Karim Benzema, and even posed with Fidel Castro before he died.
But amongst the salt sprinkling and weird meat slicing, are his steak houses any good? No said critics of his New York branch describing it as “overpriced”, “Public Rip-off No. 1”, “mundane” and the hamburgers “overcooked”. But rich people aren’t known for good taste and, given Salt Bae’s penchant for entertainment, that’s probably why they frequent his establishments.
Who knew milk could cause such a stir? With the UK leaving the EU, a US-UK trade deal could see cow’s milk contain an undesirable ingredient: more pus.
US rules allow milk to have nearly double the level of somatic cells – white blood cells that fight bacterial infection – that the UK allows. In practice, this means more pus in our milk, and more infections going untreated in cows. Much US milk would be deemed unfit for human consumption in Britain.
With this in mind, Kurzgesagt produced a video entitled “Milk. White Poison or Healthy Drink?” for its channel:
Over the last decade, milk has become a bit controversial. Some people say it’s a necessary and nutritious food, vital for healthy bones, but others say it can cause cancer and lead to an early death. So who is right? And why are we drinking it anyway?
But it’s not just cow’s milk that has its share of controversy. Oatly, the popular oat milk brand, has been in the news after selling its stake to Blackstone, a private equity firm accused of contributing to deforestation in the Amazon. It’s also linked to President Trump.
There are also environmental issues with other cow’s milk alternatives such as almond milk. According to Pete Hemingway from Sustainable Restaurant Association, it takes over 6,000 litres of water to produce a litre of almond milk. Not exactly eco-friendly. If someone in your family is suffering, it better to ask your doctor is diverticulitis hereditary.
It was a sad day when they nerfed Mountain Dew in the UK because of the sugar tax. When my cousin introduced it to me in 2003, I’d never tasted anything so sugary, watery, or green in my life. But thanks to Tastemade and James Lamprey, there’s a new way to add the sugar back in the form of a Mountain Dew cheesecake.
Tastemade’s version comes in a rectangle and uses a “Mountain Dew Glaze” containing 1 cup of Mountain Dew and a tablespoon of powdered gelatine but James Lamprey’s version involves no baking and uses a Mountain Dew syrup (1 cup of Mountain Dew with a helluva lot of sugar and corn syrup).
Miltank remains my most hated Pokémon. Fans of the game will know exactly why and which Miltank I mean—Whitney’s Miltank. But the one thing it has going for it is MooMoo Milk.
In-game, MooMoo Milk restores a Pokémon by 100 HP but IRL, it’s not officially a thing so there are a plethora of recipes for it. I settled for this recipe and bottle tutorial (because MooMoo Milk is a brand in the Pokémon world).
MooMoo Milk recipe
1 cup of milk
1/2 tablespoon of agave (1 tablespoon if you want it sweeter) or 1 tablespoon of sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
Mix together serve
If you don’t want to make the bottle, you can skip to 9:08 for the milk recipe. It might not help you defeat Whitney’s Miltank but it’ll be damn tasty. Now I’m wondering how MooMoo Cheese would taste so I can add it to the growing Cultrface cheese collection.
It takes 100x less water to farm than almonds and 25x less water to farm than dairy
At first glance, you’re probably thinking pea milk is green and comes from garden peas. But in fact, pea milk is made from yellow split peas and it’s creamy in colour.
While any plant-based milk alternative has its environmental and moral advantages, it’s important to adjust your diet to reflect any potential loss of nutrients from cow’s milk if your pea milk isn’t fortified.
If you are going plant-based, however, she [Dr Hazel Wallace] says there’s one thing you should always consider when choosing a product: “Plant milk doesn’t offer us all of the nutrients that cow’s milk does, so for people who are vegan or can’t consume dairy because they’re lactose intolerant, it’s really important that we encourage them to check the labels for fortification. Plant-based milks are not required to be fortified, but they should be,” she says.
Fortification is the process in which vitamins and minerals are added to the base product. The Mighty Society’s pea milk, for example, has been fortified with calcium, Vitamin D and B12, but this doesn’t mean to say that all pea milk products will be.
But we’re missing an all-important question: how does pea milk taste? The folks at Cooking Light tried some in 2018 and uploaded the experience on YouTube.
Stream it below and if you’ve had pea milk or you’re looking to try it, let us know how it is in the comments.