A TASTE OF HUNGARY: Marta Bujna is responsible for the delicious Hungarian food at the Airlie Beach Markets.
A TASTE OF HUNGARY: Marta Bujna is responsible for the delicious Hungarian food at the Airlie Beach Markets. Georgia Simpson

How a farewell garden party blossomed into a business

AS SHE mingled with her friends and family, feasting on traditional Hungarian food before moving to Australia from her native Hungary, Marta had a burst of inspiration.

As the sweet, cinnamon scent of the classic chimney cakes cooking on a wooden spit wafted through the air, dreams began to form inside her head of having her own business.

"I thought, 'Oh my God, I want to do this back in Australia!'"

The seed for Huns' Delight was planted but it would be another few years before she had her first stall.

When Marta was 27, she met Hungarian-born, but Australian raised Tom Bujna.

In 1956, when Mr Bujna was just a tiny 13-month-old baby, his parents fled Hungary because of the revolution.

It would be another 40 years before he returned to his motherland, where he met Marta.

It was love at first sight for the pair.

Marta didn't speak a word of English and Tom's Hungarian was "really bad."

The couple married and moved to Australia in 1997 and spent the next 13 years living between Hungary and Australia.

Fast forward to 2010, when the couple moved to Perth and Marta was ready to nurture the seed that was sown in her family's backyard, at her farewell.

However, the seed never came to fruition out west, as each shire in Perth had different rules and regulations.

"It was all too hard and I decided it wasn't worth it," she said.

In 2014, now with two daughters in tow, the Bujnas fell in love with the Whitsundays after a short holiday to visit family.

Wandering around the Lions Club Airlie Beach Community Markets, Marta once again remembered the little seed in the back of her mind.

The family moved in December 2014, just in time for the glorious wet season, and a Category 2 cyclone.

Despite the weather, at long last, Huns' Delight finally debuted, and Marta is the first to admit, starting off in the wet season, wasn't the easiest.

 

 

TASTES: Marta hard at work as she gears up for an influx of people from all over Australia, hanging out to try her delicious food.
TASTES: Marta hard at work as she gears up for an influx of people from all over Australia, hanging out to try her delicious food. Contributed

"I nearly gave up. It was so hard, I had to explain it to everyone," she said.

The market stall has grown steadily over the past five years and not once has she had a complaint.

Everything is made fresh, or as Marta would say, 'Friss'.

She keeps it simple, with two items on the menu - the sweet, chimney cake and the savoury Langos.

The dough needs to rise for at least half an hour before Marta can start to work with it and on market day she's up at 4.30am to prepare the dough.

Chimney cakes are made from a sweet dough and Marta spirals the dough onto a spit.

 

SWEETS: The chimney cake, or 'kürt
SWEETS: The chimney cake, or 'kürt Contributed

She carefully sprinkles sugar on top and, as the cakes cook, the sugar melts and caramelises evenly as the dough rotates in the oven.

"It tastes like a donut, but it has texture like bread," she said. "It's crunchy on the outside, but soft and doughy inside."

The Langos is a traditional flatbread and Marta said it was 'not oily, but light'.

 

DELICIOUS: The traditional Hungarian flatbread, known as the Langos, with cheese, garlic and sour cream is sure to get your tastebuds talking.
DELICIOUS: The traditional Hungarian flatbread, known as the Langos, with cheese, garlic and sour cream is sure to get your tastebuds talking. Contributed

Topped with cheese, garlic and sour cream she said it was rare when people didn't come back for seconds.

Marta said she loved cooking, but she loved seeing people's responses and reactions when they tried her food for the first time. She's even put an Australian spin on the traditional chimney cake and punters can enjoy a 'cone' version, filled with cream, chocolate and marshmallows.

Not bad for a woman who said there was once a time, when she couldn't cook.