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Goulash and a Wood Fire

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February 1, 2015 / Hungarian / By
Anna

The wind is howling and hail stones are slingshotting against the glass doors. I could brace myself and dive out to close the shutters, but it adds atmosphere. It's the perfect time of year for a hearty, slow-cooked stew. 

First there is the issue of who will brave the weather to walk the three short blocks to the local butcher: that will have to be The Tall Guy aka TTG.

One of the good things about goulash is that it uses few ingredients and those needed are usually on hand. Our freezer is bursting with peppers from the garden. The house is groaning under the weight of tomatoes, so it's the perfect dish. Being a peasant dish, there are really no hard and fast rules - my favorite type of cooking.

Goulash (gulyás in Hungarian)

1 kg of shin or shoulder beef

2 onions chopped

2 cloves chopped garlic

2 sticks celery

2 carrots

6 small potatoes

2 sliced green peppers

Oil

1 tbsp. paprika

1 tbsp. flour

2 teaspoons caraway seeds or fennel

2 bay leaves

2 cups tomato puree or passata

Salt and pepper to taste

Extra water of necessary 

Mix the flour and paprika and coat the meat. Fry the onions, garlic and celery. Add the meat, bay leaf, caraway seed and the tomato. Stir and leave to cook on low heat or in the oven on low heat for 3 hours. Add the chopped carrots, peppers and potatoes cut into quarters. Cook until vegetables are tender. Add salt and pepper as required. Serve with green beans or any vegetable you prefer.

This is best cooked long and slow. If the sauce seems to get too thick. Add extra water. 

This will serve six.

The paprika made it quite spicy, so make sure you have water at hand if you are in any doubt about the heat-tolerance of the people you are serving the goulash to. It also goes really well with a good, hearty red wine: we were given a Sangaetano Primitivo di Manduria by our guests and it was a great choice: not a wine I have ever tasted before - it comes from Puglia - and I’m not sure if it will be readily available in our little corner of Umbria, but if choosing a local wine, I’d go the whole hog and choose a Sagrantino di Montefalco - I have written about these very distinctive red wines previously here

 


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Country: Italy

Province/State: Umbria

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Price Guide:N/A (What's this?) N/A = home cooked meal,etc
$ = street food, fast food,etc
$$ = bistro, cafe, pub, bar,etc
$$$ = fine dining,etc

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