Spicy Hungarian fish soup (halászlé).

Spicy Hungarian Fish Soup

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The spicy Hungarian fish soup, also called the fisherman’s soup (halászlé) is a traditional Hungarian fish dish made from fresh water fish.

Spicy Hungarian fish soup (halászlé).

Spicy Hungarian fish soup (halászlé) in a restaurant in Szeged, Hungary.

The most usual varieties are made from either carp or catfish but other types of freshwater fish can be used. Sometimes more than one kind of fish is used in the same soup to provide a richer flavor.

Traditionally it is fish cooked in water with onions, paprika and salt. Other spices can be used but some purists will consider that cheating.

Often fish heads are simmered for a long time and then the resulting thick broth is strained and it used to cook the fish, since fish only requires a few minutes to cook which is not enough to develop a stronger flavor. Apart from the fish meat some of the fish innards, especially roe and milt can also be cooked in the fish soup.

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Last updated: July 9, 2015

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