The folk music of Hungary is one of the country’s most important expressions of national identity. Hungary’s geographic location, together with a cultural heritage that bears influences from central Asia to western Europe, has long supported diverse and lively musical traditions.
There is no probably other country int he world where they use as much sweet paprika powder as Hungarians do. However, it has not always been like this. In the early Middle Ages, Hungarian cuisine was well-known for its wide variety of dishes. The royal cooks used an astonishing range of spices and herbs including ginger, thyme, sage, anise and even saffron.
Folk ovens may come in different shapes of square, round or barrel, and they may accommodate 3 to 8 loaves of bread. The hearth opens into the kitchen and the bank around the edge allows space for cooked items to cool. A small corner nook may also serve as a sleeping place for children and elderly people.
Thatching was the prevalent method for constucting roofs for homes and farm buildings in the rural Hungary. These roofs are easy to repair and resistant to wind and rain. They can keep the building cool in the summer and warm in the winter.
Wickerwork has existed for centuries in Hungary. Baskets, trays, stands and various holders are made by weaving together split rods of willow. Wickerwork is durable and strong and it can even support the weight of a human body.
Herdsmen have long used animal horns to make various tools, utensils and decorative objects. For added decorations, they carve geometric or floral ornamentations and colour them qellow with citric acid.
Many Roma people were specialized in this trade, travelling the countryside to repair equipment used in kitchens and bakeries.
Blue-dyeing is the art of pressing designs that resist colour onto white cotton printing blocks and immersing the fabric in an indigo bath until the cloth attain the desired shade of blue. Today, approximately, ten families in Hungary still practice blue-dyeing, but heir work reflects variations in colours and patterns based on geographic region and family traditions.
The size, shape, form, decoration, and accessories of hats were one powerful indicators of occupation and social status in Hungary.
Red and blue remain the most traditional colours in Hungarian folk weaving even though other colours have been added more recently. These textiles often feature stars, flowers, and birds, surrounded by geometrical designs typically with right angles.