This Was: Beigli Baking

by Melinda Varga & Matthew Boyles

On Friday, Dec 9th 2022, a handful of people from the Hungarian community got together to make the traditional beigli for the annual Hungarian Christmas event. The St. John Chrysostom Byzantine Catholic Church provided the kitchen and work area to make the beigli. 

Judit spent hours preparing the dough in her kitchen at home and brought it to the church in a big cooler, wrapped in portions of doughballs. Bea prepared all the filling. Some had poppy seeds in them, and some had walnuts. There was even a small almond batch made. Kinga, Derrik and Matthew measured out the dough and the filing into beigli sized portions. Christine then rolled them out into flat sheets of dough with a big rolling pin. The next step was for everyone to get together and spread the filling onto the flat sheets of dough. The dough was then carefully rolled up into the shape of what everyone recognizes as a beigli. The beigli was then brushed with egg wash and tiny holes were punctured on the top with a fork to keep the beigli from exploding in the oven. At this point, it was time to put the beigli in the oven to bake. Thanks to Matthew and his wristwatch, no beigli was burnt. After the beigli was baked it was pulled out of the oven and put onto cooling racks. Once cooled, each beigli was individually put on a cardboard sheet and wrapped in plastic ready to be stacked the next day on the Christmas party table.

Halfway through the beigli making process everybody took a break to enjoy homemade soup and spread prepared by Judit. The smell of the baking beigli in the air was heavenly and everyone was sharing laughs and good times together.

The people present at this year’s beigli preparation cannot recommend enough for others to join them as well next year and enjoy the baking festivities. Please join us to be part of this joyous and delicious event! 

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