Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Hungarian Goulash

Several years back I used to recieve recipes in my email in box on a daily basis. Don't know what ever happened to those. Many of them were crazy and not something I would try. This one however, was one I wanted to try and now really enjoy.

Goulash, known as gulyas in its native Hungary, is a stew of beef with vegetables and flavored with Hungarian Paprika. It's sometimes dolloped with sour cream and/or served with buttered noodles.

The recipe is as I received it, with my comments in italic.

Hungarian Goulash
Serves 4
Est. cooking time: 1 hr, 20 mins

6 strips bacon, chopped
3 onions, peeled and chopped
1 ½ pounds round steak, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon paprika (I do about two tablespoons, one of Hungarian Paprika and one of a hotter variety picked up in the Latin food section of my grocery store)
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon marjoram (I do about 1 full teaspoon, maybe more)
2 cups beef broth
1 cup white wine

In a large heavy stockpot, cook the bacon slowly, stirring frequently, until browned lightly. Remove the bacon; set aside.

Add the onions and cook over medium heat until translucent. Remove from pot and place in the bowl with the bacon. (Keep the onions and bacon seperate. I then add it later, so it remains a little more firm. This cooks for awhile and crispy bacon becomes very flabby, so hold it seperately.)

Add the round steak to the kettle and brown evenly. Stir in salt, paprika, pepper and marjoram.

Add white wine to deglaze, then add the beef broth. Add the onion/bacon mixture. (Again, hold the bacon.)

Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer covered for 1 hour, or until the meat is tender. (I did simmer for an hour, but the beef wasn't getting tender enough, so I raised the heat to high and brought it back to a boil, with the cover on, I then transferred it to a hot oven, about 400, for an extra 1/2 to full hour. Add the bacon about ten minutes before you serve.)

I've served with egg noodles, I think we've had it with rice and I even attempted to make spaetzle. Just something starchy to help suck up some of the sauce. Don't forget about the noodles though, like I did tonight...mushy not good!

Also, I added about 1 TB of tomato paste, just for some extra yumminess!

Voila! Another curl up with a warm bowl of goodness meal! And remember the spice quantities are guidelines, if you want your goulash more mild, then use less paprika, if you want it fiery, use more.

Updated 10/3/07: Pictures and notes added here.


Jon said...

I must tell you that since discovering your site, I've been impressed with the amount of recipes here that I've wanted to try. I've been in a slump lately, and paging through cookbooks hoping to get a creative spark doesn't really work for me (married to a REAL picky eater). Anyway, gonna make this next week. Made the turkey casserole this week. And got the idea to do risotto (though not pumpkin; someone elses version) here as well. Keep 'em coming!

ScottE. said...

Jon, thanks for the good words. A few weekends ago, I started cleaning and found a large folder full of recipes that I want add, once those are up, things might slow a bit, but I do try to try some new things to post and comment on. I'm the picky eater here, so I have the luxury of making only things I'd like!

This dish is pretty easy and tasty, with plenty of flexibility in terms of spices and even the amount of veg.

Enjoy. Let us know how it turns out.

Stef said...

I think I need to give goulash another try. I ate some of it when I was in Hungary but didn't really care for it. And when I was 12 and at summer camp, the cook made something he called "goulash" that became the worst incident of food poisoning I've ever had in my life.... but I'm willing to give it a second chance!

ScottE. said...

Stef's comment reminded me that I wanted to post this comment earlier....way back in the day, we'd have goulash for lunch at school. Well at my little Wisconsin school, goulash really was macaroni noodles, ground beef, tomato sauce and a small bit of pepper, salt and chili was Chili Mac! So the first time I had Hungarian Goulash, I was shocked. This is a good recipe and for someone newly back on the beef bandwagon, a good way to have it.

My worst food poisoning experience was when I was about 11....a bad! I was all sorts of a mess and mom had to bring me to the hospital. The pizza company paid for my hospital visit and gave us a $400 check....I never saw a penny of it! Uhmpphf! I could have at least gotten a new G.I.Joe or Star Wars action figure....nope, we got a chest freezer!