You probably noticed that I post plenty of recipes based on curd cheese. It is the main ingredient of Central European cuisines, and I'm a big fan of it! In my country, the sweet main courses are quite popular and curd cheese dumplings are definitely in the top 3 favourites of Hungarians. It could be a filling main dish or a simple dessert too.
Anita from Ana y la Passion Blog is loved Hungarian cuisine as I do, and we had a little conversation about our favourite dishes. It's very interesting that we both listed some, based on curd cheese... what a surprise! To prepare these dishes we both have great recipes in our family cookbook, so we decided to share these with you. But first let me introduce Anita, who could be everyone's hero...
What is the story behind the blog's name: Ana y la passion?
I have started to write this blog to collect our family recipes, and this is still the main focus. But meanwhile, I have been attached to the diversity of Hungarian cuisine, so I am trying to guide my readers around this theme, plus show them how they can eat seasonally. The name actually comes from my experience in Spain, as I used to live in Valencia for half a year. My flatmates used to call me Ana as it is the fondling form on Anita in Spanish. And if it is already Ana then I have paired it with 'y la passion' which means 'and the passion'. So it is everything I am passionate about, and in this case, I am not only able to write about cooking and baking but also about travel. :) Which i am way behind. :)
What's your favourite creation, what you are most proud of?
Tough one. You ask for the impossible, as I have a story for each and every recipe. But if I have to choose a favourite one, then it would be the Gentlemen's cake, because it is soooo delicious :) and looks great as well :)
Why healthy cooking is extremely important for you?
Healthy eating is important for me as I think we have only one chance in this body, and if you eat rubbish then you should not expect it to work properly. Health is one of the simple things in life we take for granted, and you realize how amazing our body is when something is not working the way it used to. I have experienced this several times, so I can talk about this issue as it had happened to me - i.e. I needed to learn how to breathe and move at the same time-. I have been diagnosed with quite a rare type of cancer, which is nothing else but angiosarcoma -it is a type of tumour in the blood vessels in the connecting tissue-. Because of this, I had several surgeries, and I am on treatment right now as well. This is the reason I put my focus on what I eat, but sometimes I get seduced by tortilla chips -this is my weakness-, but then I choose what type of tortilla chips I am falling for. So on the blog, I put a spotlight on the healthier versions of the Hungarian dishes. I have the traditional recipe, but I have tried to do it in a vegan way -as i used to be vegan for a half year-, so I am uploading these vegan versions to the blog step by step.
Describe the best food experience you've ever had.
I have a couple. I was in South Korea with the company I used to work for, and the customer invited us to have dinner together. I fell in love with Korean food. I used to live in Kuala Lumpur and we used to go out for dinner with my boss and a friend of mine, and those dishes were amazing as well. I used to work on a restaurant interior and on the opening they have served an amazing snack collection, and I tried some chilli-grasshoppers there. But I have to agree with those who say, then when you live abroad and you return home your mom's dishes are the best.
When you are not in the kitchen, what do you like to do the most?
Well, I do quite a lot outside of our kitchen. I have learned to become an architect, but now I only do interior design. I teach, learn and practice yoga, knit and do crochet, read and travel when I can. Love to sit and talk with friends next to a cup of coffee.
As I mentioned, I'll show you a recipe from our family cookbook, but I slightly modified it... especially the sprinkle. Originally the sprinkle -of sweet dumplings in general- is simply toasted breadcrumbs, but to be honest, it's too simple for me, and I don't like that it becomes soggy too easily, so I've turned it into a tasty element with crunchy textures.
Curd cheese dumplings
- 250 g curd cheese
- 1 egg
- 2 ½ tbsp semolina
- ¾ tbsp flour
- Salty water
- 10 tbsp breadcrumbs
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 2 tbsp oil
Creamy cinnamon sauce
- 6 tbsp crème fraîche
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tbsp vanilla sugar
Curd cheese dumplings
- Mix the curd cheese, egg, semolina and flour.
- Put the mixture into the fridge for 1 hour.
- With oily hands, form small balls and cook them in boiling salty water, till they start floating on the top of the water.
- Put the oil into a pan and start to heat up.
- Add the breadcrumbs, sugar and cinnamon and start stirring it constantly till it becomes golden brown. The sugar will form crispy caramel clusters.
- Put the dumplings into the pan and cover their surface with this sprinkle.
Creamy cinnamon sauce
- Mix the ingredients.
- Pour the sauce over the dumplings and sprinkle.