Wednesday, October 21, 2009


Ever since I can remember, my grandmother would cook me “shlishkala” everytime I went to visit her. I was shocked when my friends hadn’t heard of this favorite food of mine, not realizing that it was a Hungarian dish not well known among Americans. After asking my grandmother for the recipe (I forgot how to make it as the last time she showed me I was all of 6 years old), I decided to research it. Google came up empty, instead asking me if I meant “Shlishkes”. I guess after all those years, my grandmother either forgot what they were originally called, or it was a family adaptation of the name. Whatever the name may be, they’re delicious! So here is her family recipe…

4 medium sized baking potatoes, peeled, boiled and mashed.
2 cups flour
1 egg
Bread crumbs (1.5 cups)/stale or hard bread rolls to make bread crumbs

  1. Mix potatoes, flour, and egg and add water to make a workable dough. 
  2. Knead the dough. If it is too loose, add some flour; if too stiff add more water. 
  3. Put aside dough and cut a handful from the mound of dough.
  4. Roll the handful of dough on a large (preferably wooden) cutting board and roll it as thin as your pointer finger 
  5. Chop dough into 1”-1.5” pieces
  6. Boil water in a large pot and add 1 Tbsp of salt
  7. When water is boiling, add the cut pieces of dough and mix gently
  8. Continue cutting, rolling, and chopping the dough until the entire mound is done
  9. Add all to boiling water and gently mix
  10. Boil for 1 hour
  11. Pour contents of pot into large strainer and run cold water on the cooked dough
  12. Take plain bread crumbs (or grated bread rolls) and brown in oil on low flame in large frying pan
  13. When dough is dry in strainer add it to golden brown bread crumbs in frying pan and mix well
  14. Taste and add some salt if needed
  15. Remove from pan onto plate, and enjoy!


  1. In Yiddish, the suffix -le is the diminutive. So shlishkele would translate to something like "little shlishke." I'm guessing that would explain the difference between what your grandmother said and what google turned up!

  2. My family (Hungarian Jewish) also called them "shlishkalas". Thanks for the recipe.

    Linda from Manhattan

  3. My grandma used to make these too! However, she never wrote down any of her recipes. So glad I found this one. Thank you!



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