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Hungarian Beef Soup - Marha Gulyas

What's The Big Idea?

While Hungary's most famous dish may be "goulash", there is some confusion internationally as to what actually constitutes a "goulash". Real Hungarian Gulyas traces its roots back to the nomadic Magyar people, and was a one-pot soup-like dish, to which cubes of dried meat were added. The recipe below is therefore what the Hungarians would think of as "goulash"; what is thought of as "goulash" outside Hungary is a thicker, richer beef stew, which is in fact much closer to Pörkölt. Both are great - nothing wrong with either of them - we just thought we'd try to clear up the confusion!

Shopping List

Here's the list of what you need:

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1½ lbs beef, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 large green pepper, seeded and quartered
  • 1 large tomato, seeded and quartered
  • ¼ teaspoon caraway seeds
  • 4 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 inch cubes
  • Salt and black pepper

What To Do

  • In a large flame-proof casserole or wok, heat the oil and fry the onion and garlic for 3 minutes
  • Add the beef and fry until browned well on all sides
  • Add the paprika and stir well to coat the meat. Add the green pepper, tomato and caraway seeds
  • Add enough hot water to cover the other ingredients. Season to taste with salt and pepper
  • Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat to very low and cook for 1½ hours
  • Add the potatoes and more water if necessary, and cook for a further 30 minutes
  • Season to taste, and serve with noodles or fresh bread

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