I always wanted to save the Hungarian dish for a point when I run out of other flags as I could just do it myself, but I came home for a week now and just figured that I have the best Hungarian cook right here: MY MOM!
A few things you need to know about the Hungarian kitchen: it’s basically all made of a lot of meat, fat, potato and most importantly sour cream. The one dish we prepared today pretty much sums all this up, although it’s very important for you to remember that sour cream is crucial for preparing anything Hungarian – also, it is the best and most delicious ingredient on our planet Earth! Please start putting it on everything from now on.
Start by putting a big bunch of potatoes in a pot – try to choose pieces of the same size so it’s all done at the same time. Very important: don’t peal it! Boil some eggs separately as well. This will take some time, so slice your sausage and wait. Maybe eat a few pieces of the sausage as an appetizer – this is what I always do. Once everything in your pots is ready, you could just put your potatoes outside to cool it down – one advantage of this early wintery weather. Tip for the eggs: put in under cold water for a couple of minutes, then you can get the eggshell of very quickly. If the chilly wind outside got your potato to a temperature that it doesn’t burn you anymore, slice that too, and also your eggs. Now you have everything ready, only one step left! Coat the inside of your frying pen with butter, very thinly. Then there goes a layer of potato, mixed with egg and sausage pieces. Cover it with A LOT of sour cream, some salt and pepper. You repeat this one or two more times and at the end you also sprinkle grained cheese on it – this will give it a nice golden-brown look at the end. Heat your oven to approximately 200 degrees and bake it for 30-40 minutes – basically until the cheese on the top looks sort of crunchy.
Maybe you realized and you already wonder why I haven’t mentioned the name of this dish even once so far? Well, because just as for many Hungarian words, there is just no right translation. We call it rakott krumpli, which literally would mean ‘put potato’, but I guess we could say layered potato or potato casserole – or potato with sour cream? Nevertheless, when eating it, a nice piece of pickle is a great companion! If you visit Hungary, also ask for our national drink, pálinka, either before or after. As far as my own experience shows, foreigners either hate or love it, there is just no in-between, but it’ll definitely get you hungry or in the mood to dance around!
Whenever I make this meal on my own in Groningen, it’s just not the same. Could be because the sausage and the sour cream are not Hungarian, but most likely because noone can cook as good as moms – we can probably all agree on this. Maybe I should make a separate blog on Cooking Mothers, I’d get completely fat in no time. Anyone in favor of the idea?
I hope you’ll try to make this one piece of my home-cuisine and will get completely filled up. Or just ask your mom to make it, she’d possibly do a better job than any of us as non-moms!
Thanks for cooking, Mom! Köszi Anya!