All posts tagged Budapest Christmas Videos

Chimney Cake (kurtoskalacs) is one of the traditional Hungarian cakes, originally made by Hungarians living in Transylvania (now in Romania). Chimney cake is a lovely sweet snack, a must try at the Budapest Xmas Markets, loved by kids and adults.

Chimney Cake

Chimney cake is the sweet rock and roll pastry for Hungarians. Pretzel for the salty, Chimney cake for the sweet. A walking snack, and a sight to behold as it is made in front of your eyes (and nose!).

Chimney Cake at the Christmas Market in Budapest

Chimney Cake at the Xmas Fair in Budapest – Peter Pászti Photography

While we consider Chimney Cake a sweet delight during winter time in Hungary, it is not a special Christmas pastry (unlike Beigli), and can be bought all year round, especially at Budapest festivals, like the Festival of Folk Arts in Buda Castle in August.

You can walk around the Christmas market with your warm and delicious Chimney cake: milk bread grilled over open fire. You can pick a flavour too: cinnamon, almond, walnut, coconut, etc. There are lots of yummy versions of Kurtoskalacs. No worries, the vendors will speak English. But if you wonder what the pronunciation of Kurtoskalacs is, let’s see how you say this yummy mouthful word: cure-tosh-col-arch. Not so hard, right?


It is sold at a more expensive price at the market (as all foods and drinks), but considering that there is no entrance fee to the Christmas market, it is not so pricey after all (about 4 Euros per roll, which could be 1-2 Euros otherwise…). So we shut our eyes, and roll with the Christmas: we love to nibble a freshly baked Chimney cake on the Christmas market, and have our mulled wine too!

The dough is basically a sort of milk loaf baked and rolled in cinnamon, cocoa powder, etc. Once the dough has raised and is ready to bake, it is thinly stretched by a rolling pin, cut in slightly to make a snake like strip of the dilapidated dough, then quickly rolled on a thicker wooden rolling pin, which has a metal handle and a metal hook. The dough on the pin is then baked in an open fire over the glistening coals. Once the cake is baked, and has a nice brown coating, it is slipped off the thick wooden rolls. The cake looks like a little barbecued pipe, or the chimney stack of old times. Hence the name Chimney Cake (Kürtős kalács in Hungarian).
The cake roll gets its final flavors when it is rolled in the sugary mixtures of cinnamon, cocoa, ginger, etc. The rolls are sold in packages too. It won’t be as delicious if eaten later, and delivered in a plastic wrapping, but it could be one of your Hungarian culinary gifts – some food for thought.

Hotel Zara Budapest Christmas decor

In its 2013 Christmas dining calendar of Hotel Zara Budapest the hotel’s restaurant called ARAZ Restaurant is offering a Christmas dinner menu on December 24, and Christmas Brunch on December 25.

The Christmas Eve menu in 2013 is as follows:

Christmas Eve Menu in Araz Restaurant

Welcome drink: One glass Prosecco

Salmon tartlet with sour cream texture
Gál Viognier 2007

Fish soup made from carp and catfish with matchstick pasta
Dúzsi Kadarka 2011

Catfish fillet with sweet potato rolls and chestnut ragout
Takler Kékfrankos 2009

Chocolate pumpkin soufflé with truffle ice cream
Bujdosó Sirocco 2008


Christmas Brunch Menu in Araz Restaurant


❖Farm chicken soup with home-made vermicelli
❖Morel cream soup

❖Prune turkey galantine with blueberry sauce
❖Salad buffet with the necessary ingredients
❖Duck rillette
❖Marinated prawn salad

Main dishes:
❖Baby turkey, spinach with pine nuts
❖Red wine beef ragout with pearl onions
❖Veal rolls with Dijon mustard, truffle sauce
❖Cod and lobster in velouté (spectacular)

Side dishes:
❖Potato doughnut with olives
❖Ember-baked potatoes with rosemary
❖Brussels sprouts with smoked ham
❖Ewe cheese corn polenta

❖French apple tart
❖Chocolate mousse trilogy
❖Semolina pudding with plum chutney
❖Fruit platter

Here is a lovely video showing how one of the best hotels in Budapest is preparing for the Xmas festivities, what the hotel Christmas decor looks like, etc.

The whole atmosphere is welcoming, especially around Christmas time, when you also have a chance to see the Budapest Christmas markets, visit the Opera House for a festive Nutcracker ballet or an opera, spend a Christmas river cruise on the Danube in Budapest, attend beautiful choir and organ concerts at the St Stephen’s Basilica, party at the numerous bars, clubs and ruin pubs of Budapest, and in general just have a fantastic time at Christmas in the capital of Hungary, Budapest.

Gold decor just comes so naturally to the gilded Art Nouveau building, the former Hungarian Furdo (Hungaria Bath) turned into Hotel Continental Zara Budapest. Beautiful architecture, tasteful Christmas interior and wonderful Christmas meals paired with excellent service.

Hotel Zara Budapest Christmas decor

Hotel Zara Budapest Christmas decor

Add the favourable prices and cheap deals make  the four star superior Hotel Zara stand out amongst the hotels of Budapest.

If your read Zara backward you will get the name of the hotel restaurant, the Araz, which is also preparing for Christmas with special menus.

Merry Christmas!


handmade chocolates from Cafe Gerbeaud

Budapest is one of the gems of the European Christmas Market Tours offered by various companies. One of them has made a short video of what to take home with you as Christmas gifts from the cities where the Xmas cruise in Europe stops at, like the Sacher torte from Vienna, or the handmade chocolates from Cafe Gerbeaud.

handmade chocolates from Cafe Gerbeaud

Handmade chocolates in wooden box from Cafe Gerbeaud, Budapest

Indeed, if you want to take home something elegant, and Hungarian as an affordable Christmas gift, the chocolates of the 19th century popular cafe and confectionery, simply called ‘the Gerbeaud’ by locals, will make anyone happy. Delicious, beautifully and elegantly wrapped in a wooden box.

You cannot miss Cafe Gerbeaud in the heart of the city on Vorosmarty Square, the square where the biggest and oldest Budapest Christmas Market can be found: Christmas Fair Vorosmarty Square.

Try their hot chocolate if you don’t want to drink the mulled wine of the Christmas market.
As you sail with the Viking river cruise visiting the European Christmas markets, each new day brings a different port, a different city, and different traditions. Also the new port cities offer plenty of time for shopping. Join Karine from Viking River Cruise is as sharing her favorite sweet gifts to be found in Passau, (Germany) Vienna (Austria) and Budapest (Hungary). At the end of the video you can see the beautiful Chain Bridge spanning the river Danube in Budapest.

Another good Xmas gift idea, is another Hungarian sweets, the masterful marzipan delicacies of Szamos, like the fancy fondant candy, which Hungarians traditionally put on the Christmas tree as a decor, the ‘szaloncukor’ from Szamos (yummy marzipan!).