Today, 20th August in Hungary is a national holiday, the day of Saint Stephen and the day of the country. And, among other things, it is also the day of the “new bread” (“új kenyér ünnepe“), the “freshly baked bread”, which is solemnly sanctified for the first time.
Since 3 years it is also the day in which the Kenyérlelke festival is organized, dedicated to good bread, and in this day many of the best bakers of the nation meet at the MOM Kulturális Központ (MOM Cultural Center) and the best breads and bakery products (croissants) are awarded. In addition, the competition is also open to amateurs, and the jury is made up of bakers and food experts at an international level.
I still remember that when I first arrived in Hungary 6-7 years ago the situation regarding bread was nothing short of tragic, finding a decent bread was really a challenge. But fortunately since then, thanks to some enlightened bakers, in Budapest year after year have opened one after the other several quality artisanal bakeries and thanks also to this festival every year a more open mentality is spreading about TRUE bread and about its importance in the diet (while outside of the capital, except for some few good bakeries, unfortunately the situation has yet to improve a lot, even if someone slowly tries to change the things also in the countryside, but there it’s more difficult I guess) . True bread I said, excellent, made with quality flours, water and salt, and sourdough starter (kovász in Hungarian). And time. Nothing else, no additives, no “enhancers”, no “accelerators” of leavening, no fats like margarine or other things like these. Simply bread.
Obviously at the festival there are not just stands for bread, but every year there are also stands of good restaurants that prepare great food, craft breweries, wine stands, play areas for children and concerts of local folk bands (this year also Besh o DroM). Among the things I tasted today, delicious was the pizza made by “Anyukám Mondta” (with real quality mozzarella and San Daniele ham sliced at the moment of the consumption), very good beers by the craft brewery Balkezes (in particular their Altbier), and very good and interesting was also the “Basque cheesecake” (based on the recipe of the San Sebastian’s restaurant “La Viña”). The prices were absolutely in line with the good quality offered.
In the past years we had never had the opportunity to go there, this year we finally managed to go and if we won’t have other commitments or works on this day we will definitely return in the future…in any case to these amazing bakers we go every week 🙂
Obviously we went there to eat and drink 😀 but I had time to take some pictures too, here they are.
tags: Artizán Budapest, Jacques Liszt, Panificio il Basilico, Norma Budapest, Alma Nomad, Pékműhely, Anyukám Mondta, Balkezes, Csalogany 26, Jenői Pékség, Pipacs Pékség, Kenyérlelke Fesztival