Pork and potato goulash
Some winter or rainy days, all you really want is a hot, hearty stew and a blanket to wrap yourself in. This is one of the recipes I got from my mom and something we often ate when I was growing up, it's very popular in the area from Transylvania that I grew up in. It's a very simple, budget recipe that reheats brilliantly the next day. Really, what more could you want?
Pork and potato goulash
recipe from my mother
cooking and prep time total: 1 hour and a half
serves 2 greedy adults (or more less-greedy people)
- 1 kilogram of potatoes
- 2 medium onions
- 2 normal-sized carrots or a bunch of baby carrots
- 500 gr pork meat (NOT minced!fillets work)
- paprika (regular, not smoked, as the aroma is too overpowering)
- a splash of beer (optional)
- fresh parsley
1. Chop and marinade the meat for a bit. We usually get it already marinated, but go ahead and spice it up however you like: salt, pepper, garlic powder, chili powder, paprika, curry, any dried herb you like, and add some oil on top. I use this excellent garlic-tomato-basil infused oil, but regular vegetable oil is fine.
2. Heat up a frying pan. Place the pork in it when it gets hot, and add some more oil if needed. Roast it well on all sides.
3. Add a splash of any beer, if using. Feel free to skip if you're cooking for kids, but the alcohol evaporates.
4. It will look something like this:
5. Once all the beer has evaporated, make sure the meat is roasted well and it doesn't have any raw bits. This is why, I imagine, they say you shouldn't crowd food inside frying pans.
6. Get a stew pot. I used a 2L tall one. Place the pork meat inside it, sprinkle some paprika on top and add about 500 ml of fresh water, so the water barely covers the meat inside the pot.
7. Let it boil, and then turn the heat down to a medium-low simmer while you do the rest of the prep (it should be 20 minutes, as it takes a while for the meat to tenderize).
8. Add the chopped onions in the same frying pan with some salt and more oil, if needed. Sprinkle some paprika on top, and salt. Gently stir on low heat, until the onion becomes translucent and soft (you don't want to fry it).
After a while, it should look like this:
9. At this point, take it out of the pan and place it over the meat in the pot. Stir it up. The onion will help aromatize and tenderize the meat, and you won't even feel it in the stew.
10. While all this is cooking up, roughly chop the potatoes and carrots. Like this:
11. Add the carrots and potatoes to the stew pot. Sprinkle more paprika and salt on it and add enough water to just cover the potatoes. Probably 1 more liter.
12. Mix it all gently, cover it partially and let it simmer for about 30 minutes. Make sure to check on it and add more water if the greedy potatoes sucked it all in :)
13. After about 30-40 minutes, check on it. It should have a faded paprika-red color, some of the smaller potatoes should be smashed in, while the bigger ones hold up. The potatoes should be cooked through.
14. Cut up some fresh parsley and sprinkle it on top of the plated stew. Like this:
We had it with a lot of warm bread and pickles. Inexpensive, hearty meal. Just what the rain ordered... (:
- if you add salt to the onions before they cook, they will release water and not burn!
(but remember to keep the heat down and stir from time to time)