A Bounty of Plums in Hungary

As summer winds down I walk past plum tree after plum tree weighed down by plump, delicious fruit. The trees bounty can’t hold the weight of the plums; everywhere I see ripe delicious plums lying on the ground. For me this is how I came to know Hungary. When I moved to Hungary last summer plums were abundant, and this year the pleasure of plums has returned.

plums
Plums Photo Credit OliBac

Two Hungarian favorites include Szilva Torta (Hungarian Plum Cake) and Szilvas Gomboc (Plum Dumplings) Both are found throughout Hungary during plum season. Hungarian Plum Cake is filled with plums, cinnamon, vanilla, nutmeg and other delicious ingredients.

Hungarian Plum Cake Photo Credit: Renee S Suen

I never thought much about Plums before moving to Hungary. I ate one occasionally, but that has changed. Living in Hungary has taught me to enjoy the bounty of late summer and flavors I never before appreciated.

Somloi galuska: Sponge cake soaked in vanilla sauce, chocolate and rum

 

 

 

In the name of research I spent an hour having lunch and trying a Hungarian dessert called Somloi galuska. It was a delicious surprise and of course calorie free…

This particular dessert took me by surprise. I expected a sponge cake soaked in a vanilla sauce, and covered with a rich chocolate mousse, what I didn’t expect was the kick of rum it contained! This local Hungarian favorite is delightfulhungarian dessert, dessert,

Bobby Flay’s Cuban Pulled Pork Tacos

Food Around the World
A Taste of Cuba

This recipe is one I discovered watching the food network last week. Bobby Flay created this delicious menu, which he called a Cuban BBQ. Watching him make it, I knew I had to try it. Today for my Food Around the World post I’m making an adapted version of Bobby Flay’s Cuban Pulled Pork Taco’s. It isn’t that I didn’t love his recipe, it’s that I didn’t plan far enough ahead….ahmmm.

Marinate Overnight
Bobby Flay’s recipe calls for marinating the pork butt roast for 8-24 hours. Yeah, that didn’t happen, so I’m going with plan B. I guessed that two hours wasn’t enough time for his marinade to soak into the meat, so I opted to brine my pork roast, following this recipe on Recipe Tips I followed these instructions exactly (except I did a two hour brine rather than four hour.) The meat turned out very well and in retrospect two hours was perfect, four may have made it far too salty!

Tips

When I do it again, I will use FAR LESS salt for the brine. I used three cups of water and 3/4 cup of salt, as the instructions stated. I would use half of that next time. The pork roast tasted slightly salty. I realize it is a brine and that is the idea, but I felt it was a little strong. * I learned through Ayngelina at Bacon is Magic, that the brine is meant to be rinsed off of the meat. My recipe didn’t say that, so I didn’t. Thus the salty taste. She also taught me the brine is to add moisture to the meat. I did LOVE how the two hour brine brought out the flavor of the rosemary I used. That rocked it!

Cooking with a Gas Grill

Another reason I used this cooking process is because it gave instructions for a Gas BBQ grill. You will note that Bobby Flays is for a roaster box, which I don’t have. So, improvise, improvise.

Grilling the Pork Roast
The Recipe Tips website advised cooking the pork roast with indirect heat. I did exactly that, preheating the grill for ten minutes and then browning the roast with direct heat for 6 minutes on each side. After that I moved the roast to the other side of the grill, using indirect heat. The pork roast cooked for 65 minutes, and then I wrapped it in foil and removed it from the grill. Recipe Tips recommended allowing it to sit for 15 minutes, as the internal heat, continues the cooking process. They also recommended using a meat thermometer and cooking the pork roast to an internal temperature of 150 degrees. This was my first experience using a meat thermometer, and checking the pork roast periodically was time consuming, though relatively simple.

Guava Glaze
I had real reservations about the guava jelly glaze, I wasn’t sure A. I would find Guava jelly easily. B. That I would enjoy the taste. So, I opted for Orange Marmalade and it was excellent! (Though messy on the grill.) I really loved the flavors of this recipe and the process, was fairly straight forward and simple. There are just many steps, but if you take your time, it’s pretty easy.

pork loin

My pork roast, ready to marinade.

brine mixture for the pork roast

Pork roast in the brine mixture.

market vegetables

Vegetables for the Sour Orange Red Cabbage Jicima slaw.

making the slaw

Orange juice, lime juice, honey and sugar for the slaw.

pork roast glaze

Orange Marmalade Glaze

Pork Roast

Grilling the Pork loin with Orange Marmalade glaze.

Pulled Pork Tacos

My finished pulled pork cuban tacos. These were truly excellent and I will make them again! I actually LOVED the glaze, adding it on top of the slaw and pulled pork gave a nice touch of sweetness.

Peanut Butter Creamwich Cookies

Food Around the World
A Taste of America

This is one of my first Food Around the World posts. I will be sharing food and recipes from around the world through this category. For my first recipe I’ve selected something that is typically American, a peanut butter cookie.

If you’re looking for a recipe that’s simple and still impressive, this is it. These peanut butter creamwich cookies are excellent. I discovered this recipe today on The Novice Chef.

Peanut Butter Creamwich Cookies

I was looking for a weekend treat and these fit the bill. They were easy to mix up and they didn’t take a lot of time. Though clearly I didn’t follow the directions carefully enough, because mine came out say…twice the size of Jessica’s. (I swear I made the balls of cookie dough far smaller than anything I’d normally make, truly I did.) In the oven they grew, and when the finished cookies cooled, this is what my Peanut Butter Creamwich cookies base looked like.

homemade cookies

The Creamwich Cookie Base

Peanut butter cookie filling
Peanut Butter Creamwich Filling

Peanut butter cookies
The finished Peanut Butter Creamwich cookies.

Homemade Peanut Butter cookies

The Recipe for Peanut Butter Cremewiches

*Substitutions I had no butter in the house so I used oil, and as another cooking website suggested I used 25% less oil. For the filling I used 50% less oil. I attribute using oil to the darker color of my cookies. The Novice Chef’s were very light, and that is the only change I made to the ingredients of the cookies.

The peanut butter filling is light and delicious, which was a pleasant surprise. I tend to dislike any kind of frosting or filling made with confectioners sugar. As I mixed it up I tried to keep an open mind. I was very pleased, it tastes really good!

For the recipe for these excellent Peanut Butter Creamwich Cookies, visit The Novice Chef’s site. The link is just above, listed as the recipe for Peanut Butter Creamwiches.