Pages

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Snap on a food tour

I booked one tour beforehand for my trip to Budapest - a culinary walking tour with Taste Hungary.  I've been on several food tours before in other cities and really like them as a way to experience the culture and taste a wider range of items than I'd be likely to otherwise.

We started in the food market in the middle of town (top photo) - a massive building full of stalls and locals doing their shopping and tourists.


On the ground levels were bakers, spice sellers (lots of paprika), lots of fruit and vegetable stalls, sausage, pork and poultry sellers.  I loved seeing all the food on display and not a pre packaged selection in sight. Downstairs are the smelly things - mostly fish and pickles.  Upstairs are cafes.

I had a wander around the market on my first day as it was very close to my hotel. I enjoyed some strawberries - which were just in season.  I also discovered some fabulous mini cheese scones that were warm when I got my bag.  I bought them after seeing a local lady pop one into her mouth as soon as she had her bag and the look of pleasure on her face made me want to try them - they were delicious.

I was surprised to see that the pork shops were selling crackling and 3 different types of animal fat - people buy a block.  The poultry places had every part of the birds on offer.

So back to the food trip.  We started as many Hungarians would with a shot of Umicon - an aperitif that is said to have digestive qualities - first time I've drank spirits in the morning for a very long time.  Then another local norm - langos - a piece of deep fried bread dough covered in garlic oil then sour cream and grated cheese - very tasty although I was glad we each had a portion and not the whole thing.  I like that Hungarians are not embarrassed to have garlic breathe.

Then to a sausage stall for a selection of sliced meat - all tasty.  Then downstairs to the pickels stalls (middle photo).  A whole aisle of stalls displaying pickled gherkins, peppers, melon and more garlic.  They were lovely and crunchy and some were spicy - they are a great compliment to the rich bread and meat.

Then we left the market and walked a few blocks to a popular restaurant that specialises in meat - a meat with meat meal is common here with pickles providing the vegetable content.  We had several sausages and roast duck leg.  All very tasty and filling.

We then walked around looking at several building to make some room for our next stop - an old coffee house and the lovely array of cakes in the photo (we each had a taste of each one).  The apricot tart was my favourite - big Austrian influence in the cakes and pastries - and the coffee culture comes from the earlier Turkish occupation.

We finished our tour with some wine tasting - Hungary produces great wines but doesn't export much.

4 hours after we started I left feeling very full and happy.  I'd highly recommend these tours - if I'd been staying longer I'd be tempted by their Jewish food tour and their dinner over 4 restaurants tour.

Lots of lovely food, locally grown and produced, and not a goulash in sight!

Looking forward to seeing what snap sets you have to share this week.

12 comments:

Eileen T said...

I like the food tours as well - as you say, a great way to experience a new place. Have you done any of the ones in London?

Sian said...

It sounds fascinating. There is a food tour here which is guided by someone dressed up as a kitchen boy from The Titanic!

Ruth said...

Local markets are so great for getting the true feel of a place, aren't they? The produce makes for colourful photos, too. Which is always helpful to a scrapbooker/blogger/Instagrammer ...

Karen said...

As I said last week, Budapest is high on my bucket list, and now, so is a food tour. Didn't know such things existed, although our adult ed program does a day long tour of specialty food shops that I'd love to take.

Patio Postcards said...

What a wonderful way to experience the travel. Breaking bread is always a good way to establish friendships. I did have quite the chuckle out loud about your comment of it had been a long time since you started the day with a shot of spirits. Your photos capture the delicious highlights of your food tour.

Maggie said...

This looks fascinating. I shall be back for a closer look later.

Lady Ella said...

Sounds like my kind of tour! I'd never heard of them but on the basis of Eileen's comment, I'll investigate closer to home. (And if Karen needs a travel buddy, further afield will do as well!) ;o)

Missus Wookie said...

Oh what a lovely sounding tour, I'll have to see if I can convince Wookie about Budapest. The dinner over four restaurants sounds fun too.

marshaleith said...

that looks so fascinating...something for everyone!!

alexa said...

Mouthwatering! That market looks fascinating - great that you got to try so many new things.

Maggie said...

As promised I have finally got back for a second look. What a fascinating tour and a brilliant way to see into a culture. Food is fundamental to all our lives. I am interested to see the mention of the whole poultry being used. We have been asked if they could have chicken feet by some Chinese customers. I can't really see the appeal of the delicacy but maybe that's because I have seen what they have been walking in!

Miriam said...

Now this sounds right up my street! I have never been on a food tasting tour, I hope to rectify that in September. Loved your comment about spirits in the morning 'for a long time' A brilliant set for snap of course.