You know it has to happen, sooner or later I would find where they had stashed the pinnacle of my holiday joy – the FOOD MARKET!!
In Budapest’s case this is the Central Market Hall (Nagy Vasarcsarnok) close to the green Liberty Bridge.
This colourful, bustling cornucopia of consumerism offers a huge variety of stalls on three floors and features a gorgeous colourful roof of Zsolnay tiles.
Here it is with one of the super cute little trams zooming past plus just a sample of the tasty produce on offer.
The building was designed and built by Samu Pecz around 1897 but during the World Wars it was damaged and then closed for some years.
However during the 1990s restoration work brought the market back to its ancient splendour.
Stalls on the ground floor offer produce, meats, pastries, candies, spices, and spirits. Here’s a disturbing goat with goggles, an even creepier traditional doll and an obligatory veg pic!
Then it’s off to the carnivore’s paradise section of the market, pig, cow, sheep, unidentified animals . . . you are all consumable . . .
Amusingly placed sausages distract me from the overwhelming meatiness of this section of the market!!
The second floor has mainly hot, bustling eateries and souvenirs.
From goulash to rice balls, colourful salads to spicy chicken, the food is warm, simple and comes in huge portions!
Neil checks out some hearty Hungarian fare and samples some of the local tipple!
This includes a marvellous lángos stand serving the deep-fried snack either as a savoury or sweet version.
This Hungarian specialty is a deep fried flat bread made of a dough with flour, yeast, salt and water.
This lovely looking snack is eaten fresh and warm, topped with sour cream and grated cheese, ham, or sausages, or -most frequently – without toppings, just rubbed with garlic.
Other ingredients and accompaniments can be mushroom, eggplant and cabbage or for the sweet toothed, jam, chocolate, nuts and cream.
As well as the foody delights, there are also numerous stalls selling traditional crafts and souvenirs.
Rich embroidery and beautiful, colourful lace are staple gifts.