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What Is The Right Way to Make Goulash?

ingredients to make goulash
Eric Meier/TSM

I got a hankering for goulash today.  It’s a dish I’d never made at home so I jumped online looking for a recipe.  Goulash is apparently a lot like chili – there are ways to do it right and wrong.

I don’t really subscribe to that school of thought about chili.  Some say beans, some say no beans, some say ground meat, some say cubed.  I say whatever you like is what makes good and proper chili.

As it turns out, the same variations applied to goulash.  The goulash of my childhood was ground beef and macaroni in a tomato base.  However, in looking for a recipe, I found that some say a proper goulash doesn’t use macaroni but dumplings.  Other recipes shun the tomato sauce.

I found a recipe that looked promising – and yes I stuck with the goulash I know: ground meat, elbows and tomatoes.

I used this recipe from Paula Deen and Food Network and modified it to my tastes.

I started with 1 pound of ground turkey which I crumbled and browned along with an onion and half a green pepper, both chopped.

After the meat browned, I added a 15 oz can of tomato sauce and a 15 oz can of diced tomatoes (I had Hunts Spicy Pepper in the pantry).

midway though goulash
Eric Meier/TSM

The seasonings (1 teaspoon each of salt, garlic powder, Old Bay and a tablespoon of sweet Hungarian paprika), two tablespoons of soy sauce, and a cup and a half of water went in next.

Following the recipe, I let this mixture cook covered for 20 minutes.

I added the macaroni and let the goulash cook, again covered, for 20 more minutes.

Off the heat came the goulash once the mac was softened and I let the sauce absorb a bit while the flavors mingled.

It’s a definite addition to the repertoire.  It was so good, I didn’t ever both taking a pretty picture before I dug in.

goulash on plate
goulash on plate

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