A Tasty Hero: Kossuth Crescent

“And if you cannot remain indifferent, you must resolve to throw your weight into that balance in which the fate and condition of man is weighed.” Lajos Kossuth

Lajos Kossuth was a Hungarian lawyer, journalist, politician and Governor-President of the Hungarian Kingdom during the 1858-1849 revolution. He was an oral genius with extreme talent in rhetoric, leading political debates and public speeches. Kossuth emerged from a poor gentry family into regent-president of the kingdom. As the most influential contemporary American journalist Horace Greeley said about Kossuth: “Among the orators, patriots, statesmen, exiles, he has, living or dead, no superior.” Kossuth’s powerful English and American speeches impressed and touched the most famous contemporary American orator Daniel Webster so, that he wrote a book about Kossuth’s life. He was widely honored during his lifetime, including in Great Britain and the United States, as a freedom fighter and bellwether of democracy in Europe.

“It is the surmounting of difficulties that makes heroes.” Lajos Kossuth

As a young politician he often dined in Palugyay Jakab’s restaurant, the Ironspring in Bratislava (which was part of Hungary at the time, named Pozsony). The menu of the popular eatery consisted local delicacies. One of the area’s typical dishes was a sponge-like simple cake which had variations made with walnut, hazelnut and almond. As Kossuth loved the dessert, the culinary world just calls it the Kossuth Crescent. Kossuth, who lived in a simple household with a peasant kitchen, was not choosy or picky, he accepted and tasted all foods that were offered to him. This little gem is -despite of its simplicity – really tasty.

200 g butter
180 g flour
200 g icing sugar
4 eggs
1 pinch of baking powder
Zest of one lemon
100 g walnut or almonds, chopped fined

Beat the butter, eggyolks and sugar until light and fluffy. Whisk the eggwhite into stiff peaks, then gently fold into the eggyolk mixture. Sieve the flour and baking powder into the batter, and carefully mix together. Pour it into a lined baking tray and scatter the chopped walnuts on top. Bake in preheated 180 degrees C oven for about 30 minutes. Once cooled, cut crescents with a round cookie cutter.

“The unspoken word never does harm.” Lajos Kossuth

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