If you ask any Hungarian about their favourite summer food, they would definitely say it is Lángos (pronounce: “lung-osh”) - which has an old tradition in our country. Okay, so-called lecsó and palacsinta might compete, but these two are slightly more complicated to prepare. I couldn’t even imagine a better feeling, than coming out of the pool on a really hot day and have a lángos with a lot of sour cream and cheese as toppings. Watch out! There’s a real chance that by the time you finish reading this story, lángos will change your perspective on street food, and you will only want to eat one!
The origin of lángos
To describe lángos, I would say it's kind of a bread dough cooked round-shaped in a frying pan. The first written record of this delicious food is from the 1700s, but the origin of the recipe goes back to the 14th century. At the same time when people started to leaven bread, and process new ways to bake, they started to eat lángos as an appetizer. They ate it with fat, butter, and sour cream back then. At the beginning of the 1900s, it was eaten without any garnish. However, there were no furnaces in the urban households, so people living in the cities made it in a pan, fried in fat. The preparing process is very slow, so we started to sell them at markets, or in the streets, and later on, it became a traditional summer food of Hungary.
The traditional recipe
You can find the traditonal recipe easily on the internet. I share only the ingredients with you now: 300 g all-purpose flour, 7 g dried (instant) yeast, 250 ml water, ½ teaspoon salt, sunflower oil for frying. It's essential to serve until it's still hot, when you have finished. You can eat just the baked dough itself without anything or sprinkled with some chopped garlic. The most beloved way of eating it, though, is when doused with garlic water, then topped with grated cheese and sour cream.
You can eat lángos with almost anything on it
My personal favourite also goes with garlic, sour cream and cheese on the top, but at fairs you have lots of other alternatives for the toppings. You can really eat lángos with almost anything on it. Some of the variations are: sour cream + cheese + ham / sour cream + Alp cheese + green onions / sour cream + bacon + cheese / sour cream + feta + herbs / nutella / cinnamon sugar / jam.
I am even recommending to you some really good lángos places in Budapest, where you can have the best ones. Here they are:
Street Food Karaván
Lángos PapaBudapest, Andrássy út 38, 1061 Magyarország
Lángos LandBudapest, 1024 Magyarország
ZsiráfBudapest, VI. kerület, Teréz krt 55-57, 1062 Magyarország
Street Food KaravánBudapest, Kazinczy u., Magyarország
Eat it without any topping, the traditional way with garlic water, sour cream and cheese, sweety or with herbs, it really doesn’t matter. Even though it’s so ridiculously easy to make, lángos will change your perspective on street food, as it is such a great invention, which will be an evergreen reminiscent of your stay in Hungary.
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