Goulash and Spetzle

Me: “What should we have for dinner?”
Him: “Goulash! I like the sound of the word.”

I used the recipe from exclusively food, except that for the 2 tsp each of mild and hot paprika, I used 1 tsp smoked paprika, 3 tsp normal ‘mild’ paprika, and half a tsp cayenne pepper.

Once all the ingredients had been placed in the one pot and brought to the boil, I put it into my thermos pot/slow cooker for 2 hours.

Meanwhile I went looking for a Hungarian dumpling recipe, and found nokedli on food.com. This is really a pancake mix that gets turned into stringy noodles. Lacking a spetzle press and not wanting to dirty my colander for this experiment, I used two teaspoons to ‘drop’ bits of dough into salted boiling water. The result did not look very appetising: misshapen lumps of yellow goo.

Hungarian Spetzle

This I then panfried to give the outside a bit of texture.

Here, dinner is served:

Goulash!

I’m glad I only used 1 teaspoon of the smoked paprika. I love the taste, but it does tend to overpower dishes. The pinch of cayenne pepper was just enough for me and added another nice dimension to the dish. It reminded me a lot of the preparation you do for beef bourgninon – except that dish seems a lot more complex with the wine, bay leaf and other woody herbs.

I had a brainwave, and wondered why you don’t just fry up the dumpling mixture and skip the intermediate ‘goo’ stage. Frying up the mixture into a pancake and dropping it into the stew on a later serving didn’t really work.

The days whisper “springtime”, but the nights are most definitely winter, and this is a nice warming winter dish.

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