Randy’s Recipes: Szeged Veg

 

The country of Hungary, located in the more South-Central/Eastern region of Europe, had had a sizable wartime population of 800,000 Jews, prior to their deportment to, and their deaths in, the Nazi death camps established across Europe to receive them.

 

Jews had lived here in Hungary, in the territory previously referred to during the Roman Empire rule as the province of Pannonia, since at least the second century C.E. In its conquering swath, the Roman Empire managed to eventually subdue the sovereign Jewish land of Judaea/Israel.

 

The Jewish Revolt had been initially successful in repelling the Roman invasion from Israel, but eventually, this last, mighty group was defeated, and Jews were then forced to live as a vassal state in Israel/Judah — ruled by Jewish kings, but with acquiescense of Roman heirarchy.

 

During this period, there were the Hasmonean Kings and its dynasty, as well as the more familiar Idumean converts to Judaism, Herod and sons. Because of this Roman overrule, Judaea/Israel was renamed in the guise of the Jews’ old arch enemies, the Falastin (The Philistines — a people absorbed without trace and of no known discernible historical continuation to any known people today).

 

Roman generals utilized three legions from Pannonia against the Jews during these wars of the second century and captured Jewish slaves, bringing them back to what would eventually be known as the region of Hungary.

 

It, like many other of the European towns purged of their Jews, struggled to resurge in the Holocaust’s aftermath. Szeged has become, albeit a shell of its glorious former self, a place where the Jewish community has again tried to rebuild their shattered lives from the ashes of their destruction.

 

Estimates place the Jewish population of Hungary between 35,000 – 120,000 people now. They melded along the way in a high rate of assimilation with the general populace via intermarriage and were generally given relaxed and mostly-favorable treatment by the region’s rulers. At other times, there were pogroms and anti-Semitism, and the practically complete cooperation in compliance with Hitler’s edicts to round-up the Jews to export them to their deaths.

 

In the intervening years, Jews had become skilled merchants and artisans. They lived in Hungary prior to the land’s receipt of that same name. They made prized wines, which eventually drew the jealousy and ire of the locals, whereby an official law was then created barring Jewish production of fine wines. Jews dealt in spices and trade and became generally successful people.

 

Capsicum (pepper) is said to have been brought in to Hungary in the late 16th century, with its derivative spice, called “paprika”, evolving about 100 years later. Both paprika and wine are used in the famous dish of Hungary’s region (and one of my favorites), Hungarian Goulash.

 

Sources:

Wikipedia.org/wiki/Szeged; Citation 4: Web Archive.org/Internet Way Back Machine: http://web.archive.org/web/20090728021200/http://www.vickery.tv/acatalog/Paprika.html

 

World Jewish Congress (Communities/Hungary): http://www.worldjewishcongress.org/en/about/communities/HU

 

This simple side takes its hot and spicy cues from the flavors of the region, utilizing the famous spice, which become paprika, in the town of Szeged, where it became largely popularized. I have a large can to last me for years — a “hot” version. A second, “sweet” version is the usual type found on supermarket shelves. You’re likely to find the “hot” variety at international or specialty stores.

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Randy’s Recipes: Szeged Veg (Randyjw; May 18, 2016)

 

Onion (I used white, but you can use your preference), sliced into small, wedge-like bites

Carrots, bias-cut (my preferred style, generally; but, use your own)

Paprika (“hot” or “sweet”), to taste

Cinammon, to taste

Oil (I used corn, which was at-hand; others you might try are: grapeseed, sesame, peanut, flaxseed — experiment!), lightly drizzled

Honey (or other natural sweetener) (optional; cuts the heat)

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Combine all ingredients. Enjoy! This can be used as the basis for a cooked main course, mixed with fowls, meats, fish, pasta, over rice, sauteed with diced potatoes to make home fries, etc.

3.2 Yums Up

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1 Comment

Filed under Eat

One response to “Randy’s Recipes: Szeged Veg

  1. Hee-hee! Are you tired of my fridge’s contents yet?

    Liked by 1 person

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