In honor of my desire to study Hungarian, I came down with a serious craving for Hungarian food. When I travel, I always look to see if there is a Hungarian restaurant. There aren’t many, alas. A proof of the effects of Original Sin and the attacks of the Devil and probably also Traditionis custodes… in advance. Pretty soon most of our problems will be traceable to that abhorrent, heartless document.
I flipped a coin to determine between the famous Gulyás (Gulash, pronounced Goo-yash)
or its famous rival Paprikás Csirke (pronounced Paprikash Cheer-ke).
The mise en place. Do not be alarmed at the amount of paprika in the little bowl in front. I didn’t use nearly that amount. I used about five times that amount. I didn’t have any pork lard, but I had some salt pork.
I determined to make only two pieces, which, seeing how well it turned out was a really stupid decision.
First, brown the chicken. I used thighs. Some pork bits took a ride
Onions in the fat that was rendered… I left the bits of pork in.
Too bad we don’t have “smellovision” yet.
The peppers and tomatoes and garlic go in.
Speaking of garlic… big Fr. Z kudos and thanks go to a reader here, CS.
I have sometimes complained about the “weak ass” garlic we have in these USA. A reader grows garlic and sent me some! I now experience true garlicky joy. What a difference it makes for your, say, Spaghetti aglio olio pepperoncino. Speaking of which, I know a place in Rome where you can have that for dessert. And it is worth it.
Back to the chicken…. in it goes with all the paprika and broth.
About half way through I decided to add a small bouquet garni of savory herbs I am growing.
Meanwhile, a refreshing beverage . One of the six components was an item from my wishlist (it isn’t presently on the list because I have a pretty good amount right now… but it’ll be back). Thank you to the readers who sent it! (No, not the Crodino.)
Extract the chicken in order to thicken.
To thicken, not only will I reduce, but I use a kind of fake roux of flour and sourcream.
Mixed really well, the sourcream keeps the flour from getting lumpy.
Paprikás Csirke wouldn’t be Paprikás Csirke without Nokedli, pretty much like Spätzle. Here are mine. Alas, they were a touch over done.
The sauce thickens.
I would like to have had a Hungarian red, or at least something from the, say, Burgenland. However, I did have a red Rhine – an unusual thing to see – which was very much like to some of the Hungarians I’ve had, very fruit forward and easy tannins.
I haven’t been cooking anything interesting for a while now. Sandwiches. Bowls of cereal. Salads. Yawn.
This really hit the spot. I’ll make the Gulyás or maybe Pörkölt soon.
And thus I also fulfill the recent request from a reader to make something using a dutch oven.