Holidays Yield Hungarian Goulash For Flay

Bobby Flay is just back from spending the holidays in Hungary, and returned hungry for one of its classic dishes: goulash.

Inspired by Hungarian flavors and use of spices, The Early Show's resident chef crafted a recipe for goulash in his own inimitable style.

Flay served up that recipe on the show Thursday.

Goulash is the traditional stew of Hungary. Its origins can be traced back to Magyar shepherds in the 9th century. Originally, it consisted of chunks of meat and onions, slowly cooked until all the liquid was boiled away, then dried in the sun.

The meat could then be used to prepare a stew by boiling it in water. Paprika was added to the recipe in the 18th century. It is generally made with beef, although veal is sometimes used.

In some regions of the United States, the term goulash can be used interchangeably with hot dish and casserole.

Flay uses both sweet and regular Hungarian paprika in his recipe. Paprika is a member of the Capiscum family, and is generally fairly mild. Paprika is a powder made by grinding aromatic sweet red pepper pods. The pods are quite tough, so several grindings are necessary to produce the proper texture.

The flavor of paprika can range from mild to pungent and hot, and the color from bright orange-red to deep blood-red. Some paprika mixtures also contain cayenne or chili peppers, which make them hotter. It's indispensable in Hungarian cooking and in soups, fish dishes, veal, lamb, sausage dishes, goulash, beef dishes, Spanish dishes, with pasta in sauces, with cheese dishes, and as a garnish for eye appeal over cheese, eggs, potatoes, cauliflower and other pale colored dishes.


Serves: 4-6

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 1/2 pounds beef shank, cut into 2-inch cubes
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 large yellow onions, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, smashed
1 tablespoon caraway seeds, toasted and ground
1 1/2 tablespoons sweet Hungarian paprika
2 teaspoon spicy Hungarian paprika
3 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoon red wine vinegar
4 cups chicken or beef stock
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh marjoram leaves
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme leaves
1 bay leaf
Buttered noodles
1 cup sour cream
Chopped fresh chives
Chopped fresh parsley

1. Heat the oil in a large Dutch oven over high heat until shimmering. Season the beef with salt and pepper and cook in the pan until browned on all sides. Remove to a bowl with a slotted spoon.
2. Add the onions to the pan and cook until soft and lightly golden brown. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add the caraway and paprika and cook for another 30 seconds. Add the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute. Add the vinegar and cook for 30 seconds.
3. Return the beef to the pan, add the stock, marjoram, thyme and bay leaf and season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, cover and lower the heat to medium-low and let simmer until the beef is tender, approximately 1 1/2 hours.
4. Serve in shallow bowls served over buttered noodles and top with a few tablespoons sour cream and garnish with chopped chives and parsley.