Saturday, March 30, 2013

Goulash (Hungarian beef stew)

Today is Saturday, aka Cooking day en la casa de Poupette! :D

Spring is definitely around the corner (or has it actually -and thankfully- passed that corner already?!), and I feel like this is probably one of the last days I can cook this hearty stew before it gets too warm and sunny to even want to have the stove on for three hours...

"THREE hours!", you'll say... Why, yes. It is a rather lengthy recipe, but this Hungarian goulash is very much worth your time in the kitchen.

I say Hungarian goulash, but I should really say Poupettized goulash, for I added canned tomatoes and mushrooms to the dish, and those ingredients are notably absent from the original recipe... Goulash, fortunately, is one of those dishes which you can tweak to your own liking and style of cooking; not unlike Ratatouille, or Chili.

Here's my take on this delicious simple and easy-on-the-wallet stew. Enjoy!!

- 2.5 lbs of beef chuck, in 1" cubes
- 1 red pepper, sliced
- 3 medium onions, chopped finely
- 4 oz fresh mushrooms, sliced thinly
- 2 cups of beef broth
- 1 28oz can of crushed tomatoes
- 3 1/2 tbsp sweet paprika powder
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- a dollop of sour cream and flat leaf parsley for decoration

- in a large pot, saute the onions in the olive oil on medium heat, until transparent

- take off the heat, add the paprika powder and mix well

Note: add the paprika off the heat, otherwise the spice will burn when in contact with too much direct heat and become bitter
- put back on high heat, add the beef cubes and coat well with the onion-paprika mix

- add the beef stock, tomatoes, red pepper, mushrooms, salt and pepper

- bring back to a boil, cover and let simmer for at least 1 1/2 hours on very low heat (lowest you can get without the flame going out)

- when the meat is tender, remove lid and let the sauce reduce and thicken on medium-low heat, stirring frequently to prevent sticking

- serve piping hot, on a bed of your starch of choice: boiled potatoes, mashed potatoes, egg noodles... In my case, I made Spaetzle: European pasta-like dumplings (recipe will follow soon). Delicious!

Jó étvágyat!

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