Wednesday, January 28

Oma's German Goulasch...

Pictures of the furniture in its new spots will have to wait another day -- I got into a decluttering project and it threw up all over the sofa. Plus all the cushions are once again on the floor from this morning's "safari" and the "lions" did not put away their "caves" before the biggest one went off to Kindergarten...

But in her comment today, my cousin asked for the goulasch recipe so I figured I'd post it here. Side note: I have been told that this is not goulasch because goulasch is red and has paprika and loads of other spices in it. Well, this is what my German grandma always made and always called "goulasch;" you can call it whatever you want. I call it good and easy, though it does require time...

1 lb. beef, cut into chunks (0,5 kg)
1 lb. pork, cut into chunks (0,5 kg)
1 med. onion, finely chopped
1/2 pint cream (250 ml)
2 c. (or so) water (500 ml)
1 beef bouillon cube, optional
1/4 c. cold water (50 ml)
2 Tbsp. flour
1 lb. rotini noodles, cooked (0,5 kg)

Barebones directions:
Season meat with salt and pepper, then brown it and the onions in a large pot with a bit of oil over high heat, adding a bit water and scraping up the brown stuff from the bottom of the pan as needed. Add rest of water (at least enough to cover meat) and bouillon cube (only if you think you need more flavor). Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 2 hours or until meat is tender. In a separate continer, mix cold water and flour. Add to meat mixture and bring to a boil. Add cream. Serve over noodles.

Additional comments:
  • The key to this dish tasting good (even without the addition of the bouillon cube) is to get lots of brown stuff to develop on the bottom of the pot; I think the technical term is fond. My mom usually throws in all the meat at once; I find it easier to do it in batches. Otherwise the meat releases so much juice that I can't get any good brown stuff, er, I mean, fond to develop on the bottom. And remember, that's what you're aiming for in this step, lots of fond. I throw the meat in, don't stir it, and let it go til it's just shy of burning. I quick stir it, sometimes addng a little water so I can scrape away some of the fond, and then let the meat almost burn again, etc., til it looks like it's all nice and browned. I dump that all out and then do the next batch. And whenver there's too much brown stuff forming, I dump in a bit more water and scrape; the water evaporates pretty quickly and the brown stuff kinda sticks to the meat.
  • At some point, you should also dump in the onions -- before you brown the meat, added all at once, or with the batches of meat, whatever. It's all good.
  • And if you want to dump in some of the cream while you're at it, that's fine too. Sometimes I add maybe a quarter or so during the browning process; the rest isn't added til the end. Or if you add it ALL at the end, that's fine too.
  • OK, where were we... once all the meat is browned, pour in just enough water so you can scrape off any remaining fond. Add back any meat/onions that you set aside. Then add in the rest of the water, making sure it's enough to cover the meat. If you got lots of fond, then you can skip the bouillon cube. Or if you're my brother Al, then you add two of them, regardless 'cause you can never have enough beefy flavor.
  • I think the rest of it can be done just fine with just the "barebones directions." Oh, one final note: if you really want it to be like my Oma's Goulasch, then you have to also toss the cooked noodles with some breadcrumbs right after you drain off their cooking water.
  • I usually make a double or triple batch and freeze the extra, though the sauce is never as nice after it's been frozen...
Guten Appetit! Now I better go round up my "lions" and get them to clean up my cushions!


  1. Grr, am going to have to find a template that shows bulleted lists as bulleted lists....

  2. You can make this for us anytime! I'm a German girl!

  3. I would have to call it something different. Anything that has the word "Goulasch" sounds scary to my children and Mark! :) How about...."Oma's-German-Noodles-With-Meat-All-Over-It"! Then, they would eat it! :)

  4. it looks so yummy!! thanks for sharing the recipe. will have to try it.

  5. Thank you! Oh and I wasn't thinking...of course, Oma Gloria learned this recipe from YOUR Oma. K

  6. Did you say the lions threw up gulasch all over your sofa? Yuck!! (just kidding--i knew what you meant.) And by he way, your Oma ALWAYS put a little of the cream on the meat at the beginning to help make the good brown "fond."



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