Can anyone recommend a good Hungarian cookbook? My mother in law is Hungarian but she only knows how to make a few different family recipes and we are looking for a good book to get her for Christmas.
I highly reccomend checking alibris.com and do a seach for Hungarian cookery. When I was doing my searches for Swedish cookbooks, I got about 15 from them. The shipping is pretty speedy for standard (about 1 week) and I had alot of fun getting a varied selection, from antique books to more modern.
I was just in Borders Bookstore this weekend, and noticed one new Hungarian cookbook on the shelves. My MIL is also Hungarian, but isn't into cooking much, so it would go wasted on her, right now. I should get a few for my own librabry, tho.
Have fun searching, let us know what you find, and how you like them!
Cuisine of Hungary by George Lang.
I'm not sure you'll still be able to find this new but certainly a good used copy is out there. I too recommend alibris.com
I've got both Lang and Gundel, both quite good, though I read them more than cook from them (NOT diet food, my dear!). Lang was, as mentioned elsewhere, a chef and apparently a good one; Gundel was the last in a line of Gundels running the family's restaurant in Budapest, even under the postwar regime. If they were French you'd get mostly fancy restaurant recipes, but the foods of Eastern Europe don't have the same divide between fancy cooking and home cooking, except that fancy has fancier ingredients for some things. But everyone loves cabbage, fermented or otherwise, and pork, and mushrooms and fish and poultry. Mom's Gulasz and Gundel's Gulasz were different mostly in the quality, or maybe just the source, of what went into them.
I have the Lang book and have hardly ever used it. I guess it just didn't speak to my family's traditions--which doesn't mean it won't for your MIL. One really good thing about the book is that it has a lot of history of Hungarian food and detailed explanations of the differences among various regions.
Another book you might take a look at is June Meyer's Authentic Hungarian Heirloom Recipes,
a privately published collection of recipes. I've not seen this book, but I've read about it and the recipes sound wonderful. But it doesn't have the introductory material the Lang book does, an important consideration if you think your MIL would enjoy that as much as the recipes.
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