original goulash post has long been one of my post popular and most searched recipes. Its a regular in our wintertime rotation for its rich, meaty not-quite-spaghetti-not-quite-chili flavors. If you're looking for something anywhere close to the Hungarian original keep looking. Frankly, I'm not sure I've ever sampled a version that claims to be close to the Hungarian original. But, if you're looking for a more flavorful version of the one served at the daycare that I attended in the early 1980s (or you're simply craving some stick-to-your-ribs comfort food), you've come to the right place.
But I think I covered most of that in the original post. One thing about the original post, although the photography was much prettier (back when I was barely married, had no children and a great deal more time for that sort of thing), the actual recipe was rather fussy and hastily written. This was long before I attended culinary school and started doing recipe testing for a living. Looking back, that recipe bothers me (as do many others from the old days to be honest). I've been trying to do a better job lately making sure things are accurate and easy to execute (although a dear friend who alerted me to an error in one of my muffin recipes last fall that ended in salty disaster may disagree-- that error has been corrected, btw). Anyway, I thought it was high time I revisited this one.
The version written below is simpler, less ingredient heavy and actually more flavorful. The addition of mushrooms to the base ingredients really ups the umami flavor and simplifying the tomato ingredients results in more tomato taste without less sodium and fussing around. I also made sure to measure everything to a "t," so you really should have consistent luck with this one.
If you're still dealing with snow in your area, make a pot of this stuff and cosy up one last time before Spring arrives for good.
Make 6 generous servings
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 cup diced onion
2 large cloves garlic, chopped
1 cup button mushrooms, diced
1 lb. ground beef
1/2 lb. ground turkey
3 Tablespoons tomato paste (about 1/2 a can)
1 28 oz. can crushed, fire-roasted tomatoes
3 cups water
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon Lawry's Season Salt
1 bay leave
1 1/2 cups whole wheat elbow macaroni
Salt & pepper to taste
Heat olive oil in a large heavy pot or dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and saute until they begin to soften, stirring occasionally. Add mushrooms and continue cooking and stirring until all vegetables are softened and mushrooms are starting to brown.
Add ground beef and turkey and continue to cook, breaking up the meat as it cooks, until meat is browned through. Drain off fat. Add tomato paste, stirring to incorporate and cook for about two minutes until tomato paste darkens in color. Add crushed tomatoes, water, chili powder, Italian seasoning, soy sauce, season salt and bay leaf and stir to combine.
Bring to a boil then turn down the heat to a simmer. Add macaroni, cover pot and continue to cook at a low simmer for 20 to 30 minutes until macaroni is cooked through and most of the liquid has been absorbed. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
At this point, the goulash is ready to serve, but the longer it sits over a low simmer (or even off heat), the more the better it will taste. Even better if refrigerated overnight, reheated and served the next day.