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We will be in Budapest for three days before our cruise. After seeing everyones pictures I am really excited about shopping in the Central Market. I can't find an answer to this so I am hoping somebody out there knows!! I saw bunches of pictures of salami etc. hanging in alot of the stalls. Can that be brought back to the USA? I tried looking on the customs page and all it stated was that meat is allow from some countries but it doesnt say what countries.

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We will be in Budapest for three days before our cruise. After seeing everyones pictures I am really excited about shopping in the Central Market. I can't find an answer to this so I am hoping somebody out there knows!! I saw bunches of pictures of salami etc. hanging in alot of the stalls. Can that be brought back to the USA? I tried looking on the customs page and all it stated was that meat is allow from some countries but it doesnt say what countries.

 

I don't know but we very much enjoyed the market, we also ate lunch there.

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I don't know but we very much enjoyed the market, we also ate lunch there.

 

Thanks KirkNC we are planning on eating there also. Anything special you found there that we should consider bring back to the USA with us?

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I just returned from Eastern Europe and we were asked if we were bringing in anything that was animal, plant, seeds or unwrapped food. That being said, at JFK we used the kiosk for the first time. all I had to do was put my passport in the slot, stand still while it took my picture, answer the above question by selecting "Yes" or "No" and then taking passport and photo to control and we were out of there in under 10 minutes!!

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We brought back cheese from Italy and salami from Germany. I asked that the pieces be vacuum packed and I was able to bring them back. Our tour guide recommended that we do this.

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We were told that we could not bring back meat products. We bought sausages and cheese at the Central Market, so we could have "happy hour" in our hotel room.

If you like paprika, get some at the market. I wish I'd bought more. I came home and made my version of Hungarian goulash; and my husband said it was better than any he'd had over there.

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Vacuum packed is the key. You can bring back cheese if vacuum packed, but otherwise no. Not sure about meat. They have very good Fois Grae at the Central Market too. Just as good as the French. Since it is canned it is not a problem. Paprika is probably the biggie to bring back from Budapest. It is very good quality. I still prefer to have it vacuum sealed if possible. Just to be safe. I don't want it taken away at customs! Have a great trip. The Central Market is wonderful!

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Those of you who bought Paprika at the Central Market-does it come on tins or bags to? Also wondering about price. Thanks

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Those of you who bought Paprika at the Central Market-does it come on tins or bags to? Also wondering about price. Thanks

 

Mine came in bags and cost 3E for about 50 grams of sweet AND hot! (one of each) I bought it in Kalocsa and saw it everywhere for prices ranging from 3E to 5E and some people in our group saw it in supermarkets for twice that. Oh and the bags I bought included a small decorated wooden spoon. Ideal as a gift.

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Mine came in bags and cost 3E for about 50 grams of sweet AND hot! (one of each) I bought it in Kalocsa and saw it everywhere for prices ranging from 3E to 5E and some people in our group saw it in supermarkets for twice that. Oh and the bags I bought included a small decorated wooden spoon. Ideal as a gift.

 

Thanks, Hydrokitty. Did you have any problems taking the bags thru US Customs? Is Kalocsa the name of a stall in the Central Market?

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Kalocsa is a city in Hungary. It is one of the ports we visited on our Passage to Eastern Europe cruise. The paprika there was less expensive than at Central Market in Budapest, but the stalls at Central Market offered a nice variety of paprika for sale in bags, tins, etc.

 

Becki

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Kalocsa is a city in Hungary. It is one of the ports we visited on our Passage to Eastern Europe cruise. The paprika there was less expensive than at Central Market in Budapest, but the stalls at Central Market offered a nice variety of paprika for sale in bags, tins, etc.

 

Becki

 

Becki, thanks for clarifying. I do recall you mentioned buying Paprika in Kalocsa. Our cruise does not stop there so the Market it will have to be:)

Sharon

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Sharon, the price difference is not that great and you'll find some different choices we didn't in Kalocsa. There were tins, which are nice, compared to the bags we bought. Also, some had little wooden scoops with them. Lots of nice choices for gifts, and if you buy a few, you should be able to bargain on the price.

 

Becki

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Sharon, the price difference is not that great and you'll find some different choices we didn't in Kalocsa. There were tins, which are nice, compared to the bags we bought. Also, some had little wooden scoops with them. Lots of nice choices for gifts, and if you buy a few, you should be able to bargain on the price.

 

Becki

 

Thanks again, Becki. I would like to buy some for gifts so will welcome choices. I also read Rick Steves advice on shopping for Paprika in the Central Market....he even has a YouTube video about it!

Sharon

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Thanks, Hydrokitty. Did you have any problems taking the bags thru US Customs? Is Kalocsa the name of a stall in the Central Market?

 

None at all, I packed it in my suitcase because the bags were well wrapped and I had the Bohemian crystal vase in my carry on!!!:D

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At the Central Market we bought lots of paprika in decorative tins and bags. The tins we gave away as gifts. Also bought canned goose livers (frois gras) and a couple of bottles of palinka.

 

The prices seemed better at the market than some other places, but you need to compare prices there too, and the paprika seemed to be better quality than what we can get here. Good stuff and an interesting shopping experience.

Edited by Cary Cruiser

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The paprika seemed to be better quality than what we can get here.

 

Probably better than what you can get in supermarkets, but when this supply runs out, try Penzeys.

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Probably better than what you can get in supermarkets, but when this supply runs out, try Penzeys.

 

Love Penzeys!

 

Becki

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As others have mentioned, there is lots of paprika to be had at the market, although I don't have much problem finding both hot and sweet Hungarian paprika at home.

 

I have bought fois gras at the market and it is very good indeed, and cheaper than that available in France. So long as you buy it tinned, you should not have a problem bringing it home.

 

Here's a guide to the market which you might find useful:

 

http://www.budapestbylocals.com/great-market-hall.html

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Have brought back paprika a number of times from Hungary - and have always bought it in the market.

 

If you enter through the front doors, turn to your right and go down the furthest aisle. Part way down there is a stall on your right that has paprika set out as if in a window/wooden sill. It is actually 2 stalls longs.

 

We discovered there is more than one grade of Paprika. The "tourist" paprika in pretty packages apparently isn't as high grade as some. We bought the "tourist" paprika for most people - usually in packages with sweet and hot together. Everyone we gave this to was pleased.

 

We bought the better paprika for people that tend to cook a bit more gourmet. Not as nicely packaged - and bought it in single packages. We discovered this when we asked a girl at the stall what she recommends, and she said she didn't use the "tourist" packages.

 

If you are looking for smoked paprika - you will have a hard time finding it anywhere other than the Central Market.

 

We also bought packages to make goulash soup --> they have some with instructions in English. And, we bought paprika "cream". It is like a paste that the locals use in their goulash to spice to individual taste. We bought this after discussion with our guide on our last visit.

 

One great thing about this stall is that they take credit cards!!!

 

I took 2 large zip-lock bags and put the paprika in the bags in my suitcases. No issues at all (I had bought for 20 people!!).

 

If you are at the market, look for the strudel stall.... Heavenly. Also, you can eat upstairs --> just walk around and look for what appeals to you food wise.

 

If you need to use the washrooms, the washroom on the upper floor near the front is cheaper that the one on the lower floor at the back.

 

Enjoy!!!

 

Fran

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Thank you to everyone who posted your very helpful shopping experiences at the Central Market Hall. Did not know about the goulash packages which would be a good idea for a few friends who love international foods. So much good info that I will copy and paste into my port notes to take along on the cruise. Also appreciate knowing that bringing Paprika back to the US will not be a problem. Looking forward to trying some of the food in the Market...will look for the strudel hall for sure:)

Sharon

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Thanks for all the replies. We will definately be bringing paprika back with us for all the kids so we will probably be buying 10 -15 packets :) Will look for the goulash packets also!

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Can you use euros in the Central Market or do you need the local currency? We're not doing any pre-cruise days so don't want to get local money unless necessary.

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Joanne,

You can use euros or charge cards at almost all booths. Some will even take dollars. Be sure to ask prior. We never did have to get local currency in Hungary.

 

Becki

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We purchased both hot and sweet as well as the "paste" from the Market Place. We took a goulash making class with a chef at the Sofitel. I can't wait to make my goulash!!

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