There was a cool weather change coming through, possibly the last before the onset of summer so I decided to appease my craving for beef and cook a goulash, the process for this one being very similar to cooking a casserole. There aren't many unusual ingredients in this dish, which is a factor I look for now as I keep a good stockpile in my pantry which I hope will serve as the basis of a lot of the things that I cook. Green capsicums, tomato puree and Blade steak were all I needed to purchase. I had everything else on hand which was great. Winner! This goulash recipe was originally written for 4 people, and I had cooked it for four and loved it, so this time I decided to do some batch cooking. The Hungarian word for goulash is gulyas meaning 'herdsman', and the dish originated in Medieval Hungary. I am taking a lead from this and if serving this to family and friends, a very rustic presentation of this dish is perfectly acceptable.
Thankfully, I have the time now to cook food in large batches. I'm telling you nothing new when I say how expensive it can be to buy and cook healthy food, however it is the only way to go. There are ways around this such as shopping at local farmer's markets whenever possible, and also doubling the quantities in dishes such as stews, casseroles, lasagnes, and goulashes and freezing half of what you have cooked. How many times do you find that a recipe calls for 3 tablespoons out of a can of tomato puree, or coconut milk for example, and then you are left wondering how to use up the rest of the ingredient, or it stays in the Refrigerator unused and ends up being tossed out. It was easy to increase the quantities to feed 8 people for this recipe, however it is easily halved to quantities for four people if you wish. I cooked it three days ago, and I have frozen half of it. On a regular basis if I cook more than we need to eat I freeze it in portions for those "no cooking" nights when the kitchen is closed, which we all need occasionally, or eat it during the week as leftovers. A dish like this definitely improves in flavour when it sits for a day or two in the refrigerator before being eaten. It is an economical way to eat and stretch the budget these days. As we head into summer, it will be nice some nights to enjoy the convenience of taking a cooked meal out of the freezer and defrosting it, without having to cook in a hot kitchen. However, I do enjoy a good barbecue as well, don't you?
I love that this recipe uses live Apple Cider Vinegar which is great for our healthy gut, and also tempts the blade steak to braise well and provide a lot of rich flavour. This is such a Dr. Michael Mosley trademark, which you will recognise if you have read any of his books on how to live with a healthy gut. A traditional Hungarian Goulash is a soup and stew combined so there will be more liquid in this casserole than the traditional kind, all the better to mop up with some nice bread I say. Traditionally, flour isn't used to thicken Hungarian stews.
8 tablespoons olive oil
2 large white onions, chopped
4 large carrots, cut into batons
2 large green capsicums, deseeded and sliced
6 garlic cloves, crushed
1 kg diced braising steak, I used grass fed blade steak, diced for me by the butcher
2 tablespoons paprika
6 tablespoons tomato puree
6 bay leaves
800 ml organic beef stock, or a bone broth you have made yourself
2 x 400 g tins chopped tomatoes
2 tablespoons live (raw) apple cider vinegar
Preheat the oven to 160 deg. C.
Heat 4 tablespoons oil in a large stove top casserole dish or Scanpan frying pan with a well fitting lid and fry the onions gently for 5-7 minutes. Add the carrots, capsicum and garlic and cook for a few more minutes. I used my Scanpan for this dish.
Dry your meat with some kitchen paper or a chux to avoid excess splattering. Place 2 tablespoons of oil in another pan over a high heat and brown the meat on all sides in batches adding more olive oil as you need it. I cooked the beef in four batches in my favourite cast iron frying pan on a high heat.
I seasoned each browned batch of meat and added it to the vegetables in my Scanpan, along with the paprika, tomato puree and bay leaves.
Pour the stock or broth into the pan used for browning the meat and stir for a minute or so, scraping the bottom, to incorporate all of the brownings and juices from the meat.
Add the juices to the casserole dish, along with the tomatoes and the vinegar. Bring the goulash to a simmer, then either transfer the mixture to a large casserole dish for the oven or cover the one you are using, and place it in the middle of the oven for 2 1/2 - 3 hours, taking it out occasionally to give it a stir, and adding more water if it is drying out. My Scanpan was perfect for slow cooking this dish in the oven. It will look like there is a lot of liquid, but trust me it will thicken up beautifully over the cooking time.
Serve your goulash with a bowl of full-fat organic Greek yoghurt or sour cream, a generous serving of green vegetables and a bowl of reheated new potatoes and butter sprinkled with parsley. As we are conscious of our carbohydrate intake now, I often cook potatoes and pasta in advance and let them cool, as reheating previously cooked potatoes increases the amount of healthy resistant starch in them, which is much better for us. Any condiments such as good quality sauerkraut, pickled cabbage, or pickled fennel could also be served as a vegetable side to compliment Goulash as is customary in Eastern European countries such as Hungary and Poland.
Thanks for dropping by,
This looks so delicious and jam packed with flavours! A perfect winter warmer too.ReplyDelete
Thanks Angie. It certainly works a treat when the weather is chilly.Delete
Another terrific recipe that I am going to try, Pauline. Thanks so much. It has been a little cooler since the heatwave we had so I also will take advantage of that before it heats up once again. We had 4mm of rain in storms that moved through all day yesterday. It wasn't much but some areas had heavier downfalls including Stanthorpe which was just wonderful as their lack of water is such a concern to all of us in the region.ReplyDelete
So pleased Stanthorpe has received rain Chel. The weather seems very changeable at the moment so hopefully there are better times ahead. I hope you enjoy the recipe.All the best, PaulineDelete
I am putting this recipe in my folder for a (hopefully) wet cold winters day. I remember a similar dish my grandmother made for us such a lovely memory. Thank you PaulineReplyDelete
Thanks Bernie. What a lovely memory to have. I hope this recipe lives up to the memory. Best wishes, PaulineDelete
Mmmm, love goulash -- it has such terrific flavor. Your recipe looks good, and I really like the tip about reheating potatoes. Didn't know that about resistant starch -- great info. Thanks!ReplyDelete
Thanks KR, I enjoy potatoes and they go so well with goulash, and now I don't need to worry about the carbs.Delete
Clever idea to get the butcher to do the dicing of the steak for you! I don't eat green capsicums so would swap those out if I made the dish :)ReplyDelete
Our butchers always seem very happy to dice the steak for me for stews etc, at no extra cost, it is a very competitive business here. I'm sure red capsicum would work and just be a bit sweeter.Thanks for dropping by Tandy.Delete
I must give these a go! I love goulash and although it's spring, it isn't quite warm enough for me! :DReplyDelete
It's cool here tonight in the North so I imagine in Sydney it is still quite cool. I don't know of any restaurant in Mackay that serves goulash so it is a treat for me. Cheers, PaulineDelete
i think it's starting to get a bit too warm for this dish pauline:) but really i bet it's good any time of year. we had goulash in belgrade years ago in some stranger's backyard. they had set up chairs and tables on their back lawn and were just selling it to passing foreigners like us! cheers sherryReplyDelete
Wow I love that story Sherry. Never been to Belgrade but how entrepreneurial. It's really cool here tonight, perhaps even cooler than Brisvegas, so I am soldiering on with this kind of dish. Thanks for Dropping by, PaulineDelete
It looks so delicious. I don't eat beef a lot, but just seeing the photos makes me want to try this recipe. :)ReplyDelete
Nil great to hear from you.Because this dish is a cross between a soup and stew, a meal of this isn't laden with meat, less than with a stew I think. We don't eat much red meat now either, so I really enjoy this kind of dish. Cheers, PaulineDelete