Happy Monday, folks.

How was everyone’s weekend? Mine was good. I left the hustle and bustle of the big city and spent the weekend in The Mitten with the family to celebrate Little Buddha’s birthday. We are now the same age until my birthday in two weeks. That little fun fact never seems to get old for me.

I love Chicago so much, but every once in a while, I need some peace and quiet to recharge, and Pure Michigan always does the trick. While there, I don’t feel the need to keep myself busy with friends or otherwise, and good intentions of hitting the gym are often sidelined in lieu of hitting the couch. Since I don’t allow myself this luxury at all when I’m at home, not one part of me feels guilty about it.

The benefit for all of you of my little trip home is that it ended up being the perfect ending to what has been a lackluster jaunt through Eastern Europe. Being home, I asked that mom prepare some traditional Hungarian dishes. I am the HUNGARY Buddha after all, and not giving myself time for a full week stop in Hungary would have been a disservice to my heritage, the same as if I had skipped over Burma. The dishes mom made also just happen to be both my and Little Buddha’s favorites. The birthday gifts to us that are really a gift to all. Thanks, Mom for being the guest chef this week.


A bit about Hungarian food: It’s heavy. Meat, stews, casseroles, potatoes. Gravies made of meat bones, noodles and veggies sautéed in pork fat. Sour cream. Oh, the sour cream. All spiced with not much more than onions, carrots and paprika.

Note about this week’s selections: They are NOT gluten, dairy, soy or fat free. Not even close. This is how we roll… If I’m going to give you my favorites from The Motherland, I’m not going to give you shortcuts.


Veal Paprikash

Túrós Testa (pronouched two-dosh tay-sta): Cottage cheese noodles

Mandalas Torte

Palacsinta (Hungarian-style crepes)


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