Lángos (or langoš) is the fast food of Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic. It is probably the best way you can use flour, yeast, potatoes and water (oh, and a liter or so of frying oil). Like hot dog stands in New York, lángos stands in the cities of Central Europe feed crowds and crowds of people.
There is nothing fancy, nothing sophisticated about lángos. It is simple, greasy and so delicious that when Katy’s friend came from NYC for her second visit to Central Europe, she refused all fancy restaurants and asked for lángos.
Unfortunately, modern ideas about health are killing lángos stands. What rubbish! The deep fried dough is full of vitamin B, and the salty garlic water, which you spread over the lángos, is brimming with allicin. If you decide to eat it topped with cheese and sour cream, you get protein and calcium as well! Why, it’s practically health food.
Makes about 4 large or 6 smaller langos
- 500 grams flour, plus more for flouring your work surface
- 9 grams of instant yeast
- 12 grams of salt
- 1 tsp sugar
- 200ml milk
- 200ml of water
- Oil to deep fry
- To serve:
- Sour cream
- Grated cheese (Emmental or another firm, mild cheese)
- Stir together the flour, yeast, salt and sugar in a large bowl.
- Add the milk and the luke warm water and kneed
- The dough will be soft and sticky. Place the dough in a large, clean bowl, cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise for 1 hour or until doubled in bulk. You can also put it in the refrigerator overnight at this point, if you prefer.
- When you are ready to fry the langos, heat about 2 cups/half a liter of oil over medium heat in a pan (we used our big non-stick skillet). While it is getting to frying temperature (350-370F or ~180C), you can prepare the langos. For each langos, scoop out about ½ cup of the dough and shape a ball. For easy shaping, cover your hands with cooking oil. Cover with cloth, let it rest and rise again for 20min.
- The oil is hot enough when you toss in a tiny scrap of dough and it bubbles fiercely. Pull the langosh into a circular shape (greasy hands help avoid stickiness) and carefully place the langos in the oil one at a time (2 might fit in a large pan, but don’t crowd them) and cook about 2 minutes or until the bottom is a deep golden color. Turn with a fork or tongs and cook another 2 minutes. Remove from the oil and allow to drain on a paper towel. Repeat until all langos are cooked.
Watch this lady:
- To serve, traditionally the langos is brushed with a mixture of garlic paste and water or oil. Crush a couple of cloves of garlic in a press or using a microplane grater, and mix with about 2 Tbs water or olive oil.
- On top of this, if you dare, spread sour cream and sprinkle with grated cheese. Enjoy!