For those who don’t know this already, I’m Hungarian! As a kid, my parents sent my sister and I to Hungary every summer to spend time with our family there. Back in Canada during the school year, we did all the Hungarian things you could possibly do. We went to Hungarian School, were part of Hungarian Scouts, we were both debutantes with the Helicon Society and we danced for many years in the Kodály Ensemble (a Hungarian folk dance group). I was the kid in school who had csírke paprikás (chicken paprikas) for lunch and everyone thought my food was weird. Well, jokes on them because there is no comfort food for me like Hungarian food and it didn't even bother me because it was always so delicious. I’ve learned a lot over the years watching my Nagymama’s (grandma’s) and Nénje (great-aunt) cook Hungarian dishes and I’m so excited to share all of these authentic Hungarian recipes with all of you. To start my Hungarian food series, I decided to make the most classic Hungarian dish there is. Gulyás Leves (pronounced goo-yah-sh leh-veh-sh) or commonly known as Goulash Soup.
2 Cloves Garlic
1 Pepper (Hungarian Pepper for authenticity, but any green pepper will do)
1 lb. Beef Chuck Roast
Pork Lard (you can also use olive oil or vegetable oil)
In oil (or lard if you’re going for the real Hungarian recipe), soften your onions and garlic. Add salt to get them to really sweat. I like to take my time with this and cook them low and slow to build a nice flavour base.
Add your peppers and cook until semi-soft.
Next add your carrots and parsnips, give it a mix, then add your paprika and salt again.
Add your beef to the pot and cook until all sides have browned.
Once your beef is browned, add your diced potatoes. You always add your potatoes last to this recipe otherwise they get too soggy before you even add water.
Fill your pot with water until all of your ingredients are just covered. Simmer for 45 minutes to an hour.
The soup is ready when the potatoes are fully cooked and your meat is soft. Keep an eye on your liquid levels and add more as you need to. Before serving, taste and adjust seasoning as you see fit.
I sometimes like to add small little noodles to this soup too, but it's not necessary and is totally up to you.
This soup both is and isn’t a clear broth soup. The beef and potatoes break down and combine with the paprika to create this rich, thick broth that is just so flavourful and wonderful.
Serve with rye bread or sourdough (slathered in butter) for dipping.
If you're more of a visual person, check out the video below illustrating the recipe step-by-step with tips and tricks peppered in. Video Length: 2:00