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Hungarian cucumber salad

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Hi, everyone. I made goulash today, using the Round the World Cookbook's recipe minus most of the salt, since that was the recipe my mother used and I always  enjoyed it. I also made a rather dangerous dish for someone on a low-salt diet: uborkasaláta (Hungarian cucumber salad). Why dangerous? Because to get the right texture for the cucumber slices, you must salt them, and then it's very difficult to rinse the salt off completely. But that aside, I found that a recipe in the Gundel Cookbook that my father bought on the street for $1 but which we threw away when vacating his apartment because it was falling apart was the one that really tasted like the salad I had enjoyed so much when I was in Budapest. I tried to find the same recipe online and didn't, really. As near as I can reconstruct the recipe, it had these ingredients:

 

2-3 cucumbers, sliced and salted all over, then left to sit until water has come out of them, then optionally rinsed and patted dry

onions (I don't know how many - we used 2 very long hothouse cucumbers and 1/2 large white onion, and it seemed like enough onion)

vinegar mixed with water (but how much?)

pinch of sugar

generous amount of paprika

I don't remember whether black pepper was asked for, but some recipes call for it, and I figure it couldn't hurt to use a little.

 

I can't find the online recipe I mostly consulted, but it called for 1/2 cup of vinegar and 1/2 cup of water. I used cider vinegar; maybe I should have used white vinegar, but in any case, it really came out too vinegary and with too much liquid for my taste, or compared to what I enjoyed eating in Budapest, and I added more sugar than I would have wanted to (5 or 6 pinches, I think). However, it did taste a lot better when I added additional sweet paprika to both the goulash (for which I used spicy paprika while cooking) and the salad.

 

So my question for you: Next time I make this salad, how much vinegar, water and sugar do you think I should use? And do you have a favorite recipe?

I should add that while it's perfectly valid to add sour cream, dill and various other ingredients to your version of uborkasaláta, I'd rather not. The only additional ingredient I might consider is garlic, which some recipes suggested, but I don't remember there being any in the Gundel Cookbook.

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for a "German style" cucumber salad I use 50-50 cider vinegar + olive oil - slightly different twist.

salt&pepper + celery seed.

about 1/2 thinly sliced onion by volume to cucumber slices.

 

no sugar.

no paprika (in Hungary methinks everything gets . . .   )

 

the Penna Amish are fond of sugar in their version, and also in pepperslaw - I suppose it's a regional thing - but I much prefer without.

 

white vinegar will likely taste even stronger and more "raw" - I'd suggest you start with the 50-50 mix, taste - add more water until the bite decreases to your liking.


Edited by AlaMoi (log)

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uborkasalata The author in the blog states the vinegar in Hungary is much stronger than in the US,  so you add less. Hopefully this recipe and blog will help.

 

AlaMoi : Germans also have A Krautsalat, that is slightly sweet, vinegary, sometimes with a small kick from white pepper. It usually contains cabbage, a little onions and some green peppers. Addictive.

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oh there's be billions and billions of variants to any "authentic" dish.

 

German potato salad - also one (most) regions prepare with a vinaigrette style "dressing" - but indeed there is a known and documented "creamy version"

 

"Feld Salat" - another item essentially not replicated in (multiple) forms . . . sits right next to a "Kraeuter salat"

 

Schweinehaxen vs. Eisbein . . . names, words - reality may not be so different....

 

etc & etc.

 

 

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7 hours ago, milgwimper said:

uborkasalata The author in the blog states the vinegar in Hungary is much stronger than in the US,  so you add less. Hopefully this recipe and blog will help.

 

Thanks for the link.

 

Have you tried that recipe, by the way?

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