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Buda & Pest

May 3, 2013

Next stop Budapest. Pretty city that welcomed us with bright sunshine and our lovely local host Brigi with an Hungarian apple soup, accomodated in a beautiful old house where we could escape the heat.

So, what to say about this Pest and Buda? Athletic folks live here, seems everybody is doing some sort of exercise. And we understand why and followed them. Jacs and me enjoyed indeed running in the mornings on this fabulous Margaret Island, a leap of 5.2km on a softened (!) path. How cool is that?

The Jewish Quarter is worth mentioning, that we learned more about on this alternative tour we joined. Cool cafes, book shops, food places and lots of so called ruin bars, which Szimpla is the most famous (Imagine Leipzig-Connewitz or Kreuzberg but more run down and more graffities). We were happy to have been invited on a concert of our guide Antonia Vai. Listen to her on youtube if you are interested. Awesome voice and lovely girl!

And the food, yummi! Beautiful market halls, actually a huge variety of markets in Budapest and we have eaten us through most of them, tried the sausages, the salamis, debreciner, the stuffed cabbage rolls and sauerkraut, Goulash, stuffed peppers… and yeah, cheese.

Hungary has a vast variety of cheeses. Unfortunately I could not taste so much, since we did not found a decent cheese shop but we’ve been successful on the food markets . Outstanding and worth mentioning is Orda, a whey cheese, mostly made of goat’s or sheep’s milk, in Italy known as Ricotta. We bought the goat version, freshly made on a market which was voted as Jac’s and my favourite Hungarian cheese.

Patenyica, is one of Hungary’s most popular cheese. It is a kneaded or stretched sheep’s or goat’s milk cheese, such as a Mozarella. The one we tried came lightly smoked (like Italian’s Scamorza), looked very decorative (and one can roll off the strips) and was very tasty. Yep, again smoked. It seems that in Hungary more and more smoked versions of cheeses appear. For example there are some new cheeses where the stretched curd is twisted around smoked sausage and the whole is smoked again, other versions are filled with smoked ham or salmon. We’ve seen this in all the previous Eastern European countries where smoked sausage is a staple, including Germany. They just cannot live without it. The Frenchmen would probably scream by only the smell of it … a no-go.

By the way, we did not ONLY tast cheese. The sausages such as the Salami or other smoked stuff were delicious too. Jacs indulged herself in the countless pastries…. and I watched her enjoying it 🙂

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