Monday, February 1, 2016


Photo courtesy of Flickr user Dennis Jarvis via Creative Commons
Hungary is a Central European country about the same size as Indiana. It is landlocked and the capital is Budapest. For more information, see the CIA World Factbook.

I knew what I wanted to do for Hungary before I ever got there. Goulash. I remember loving it when my grade school served that for hot lunch (although, in retrospect, it was probably "American Goulash.") My in-laws mentioned it when they visited Hungary. The World Factbook even calls their liberalizing their economy "Goulash Communism." There really was no choice here.

Best yet, my in-laws brought some paprika back from Hungary for me, so when the recipe called for Hungarian paprika I could definitively check it off the list.
And in Hungarian!
Somehow when I put this recipe into my meal planner (Plan To Eat...if you're interested, let me know!) it doubled the recipe, so I double-bought a lot of things. Like parsnips. Which is a fairly new vegetable for me.

Brendan helped by chopping these babies up. He just has a butter knife, but it worked quite well. He thinks it is pretty fun. My plan is to have him not have some of the normal "bachelor cooking problems" a lot of people have when they leave home. Chopping parsnips at 3 has to help, right?

Cooking the recipe was relatively straight-forward. Onion and paprika, then meat, then start adding some flavor.

It said, however, that it wanted the meat to turn white. I'm not sure what was up with that. Mine didn't. It was brown. Like beef normally does.

It had my favorite kind of instructions: vague. "You’ll probably have to add some more (2-3 cups) water too." And what is a celery leaf?

I did have a fresh green pepper from the garden. Yay veggies!

I did not make the csipetke noodles (they were optional anyway) but did homemade bread in the bread maker instead.

To give you an idea of how long ago this was, we ate outside.

The goulash was meh. Nothing great. It kinda felt like cooked meat in tomato-water. It didn't really gel together or anything like that. Nothing melded and the broth was really really weak. I don't think we ended up eating all of the leftovers.

I'm sure goulash in Hungary is delicious. Anyone that wants to fund my research on this supposition, I am all ears.

Next time: Iceland

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