Palacsinta

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Ahhh, palacsinta! What is more Hungarian than palacsinta, more comforting than one can imagine. These crepes, similar, yet different from the French perform a variety of functions from main dishes to desserts. The most common is to spread a favorite jam on a palacsinta, then roll it up and eat it. However, there is a famous dish called Hortobagyi Palacsinta, in which the palacsinta is filled with meat, then covered with a paprika sauce (a very simplified description). The famous Gundel restaurant also created the Gundel palacsinta, a chocolate delight. There are many fillings that combine cottage cheese with various flavors, so many that I can’t possibly list them. Do a google search under palacsinta fillings (Hungarian–palacsinta toltelekek) and you fill find hundreds to choose from. Quite simply, I like to sprinkly them with plain sugar, roll them up and enjoy them. My mother made a fabulous ham filled palacsintas and creamed spinach palacsintas. After filling and rolling she breaded them just like typical chicken or pork chops and then fried them (I do them in the oven). They are a lot of work, but my husband is crazy about them.

To get the texture just right, a cast iron skillet is the best. A teflon pan works also, but the cast iron is better.
When you fry them, the first one tends to be a bit ragged because the pan temperature isn’t quite right. Once they get going they are beautiful.

So, here is the simple palacsinta recipe:

3 eggs beaten
4 T sugar (reduce if desired)
12 heaping T flour
1/2 tsp. salt
2 C milk
1 T vegetable oil

Additional oil for frying.

Combine all ingredients with egg until smooth, then add oil, and let rest in fridge for a couple of hours (at least one hour).
To fry, pour enough batter into heated frying to make a thin palacsinta. Roll the batter around to fill the pan to the edges.

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