Hungary is renowned for its fine pastries including from tree fruits such as plum, some of them borrowed from Austria which, in turn, borrowed from France. Hungarians have created a delightful repertoire of rich desserts. The cuisine is a combination of simple peasant food that originated many centuries ago when nomadic tribes rode the great plains of Hungary.
Hungarian Plum Cake
Recipe Submitted By: Marie Simon Gowan
Check out her FaceBook page: https://www.facebook.com/HungarianHeritage
Some new ingredients arrived in Hungary by the nomadic tribes with the Italians and Turks in the 15th and 16th centuries, and the elegant, highly developed cuisine which came from the days of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. With the reign of King Matthias Corvinus (1458–90) who was married to an Italian, Queen Beatrice. Through her King Matthias brought Italian cooking to Hungary. During this period, cooking was raised to a fine art.The result is delicious, often hearty, fare that helps Hungarians withstand long, cold winters. It is also often incredibly indulgent, especially when it comes to pastries, cakes and desserts.
Hungary has been involved in in many conflicts throughout their history especially with the Ottoman Empire including a battle with the Turks. When the Turks invaded Hungary in the 1500s, they brought their cooking customs with them. These included the use of the spice paprika and a thin, flaky pastry called filo (or phyllo ) dough. They also taught the Hungarians how to cook stuffed peppers and eggplants. The Turks introduced coffee to Hungary.
During the 1600s, a renewed European campaign was started to enter the Hungarian capital. A Holy League’s army containing over 74,000 men, including German, Croat, Dutch, Hungarian, English, Spanish, Czech, Italian, French, Burgundian, Danish and Swedish soldiers. Just as with the Turks, each battle which ended up capturing sections of Hungary the conqueror brought a piece of their food culture into the Hungarian cuisine.
YouTube Video: Cooking Tips – How to Pit A Plum
- 10 (or more) fresh prune (Italian) plums
- 1/2 c. butter (room temp)
- 1 c. sugar (½ c. for batter, ½ c. for topping)
- 2 eggs
- 1 c. flour
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- Wash the plums, split in half and stone them (remove the pits) but keep the peels on
- Put the butter in a food processor bowl that has been rinsed out with very hot water so the butter will soften slightly
- Add 1/2 cup of the sugar and 1 egg and pulse processor until thoroughly mixed
- Add the second egg and beat until batter is light
- Add the flour; pulse processor gently until well mixed and spread in an 8” x 8” casserole
- Arrange halves of plums, skin side down, on the batter and sprinkle them with the remaining 1/2 cup of sugar mixed with the cinnamon
- Bake in 400 degree oven for 30 minutes
- Serve plain or with whipped cream.
- Delicious served warm or chilled.