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Pork, pepper and potato goulash

publication date: Feb 21, 2010
author/source: Fiona Beckett
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This is a fabulous all-in-one dish that doesn't cost too much to make and can be prepared in advance. Don’t worry if you haven’t got all the ingredients - you’ll find you can make some substitutions or leave one or two of them out altogether.

Serves 8
Time: about 2 1/2 hours
Cost: about £1-£1.50 a head, depending on whether or not you've already got some pimenton or paprika

1.5kg boneless pork shoulder steaks
5-6 tbsp sunflower oil or other light cooking oil
500g onions, peeled and finely sliced
2 large cloves of garlic, peeled and finely chopped
4 level tsp sweet pimenton or sweet paprika*
2 level tsp hot pimenton or hot paprika* or 1/2 - 1 tsp chilli powder or hot chilli sauce
1 heaped tbsp tomato paste (optional)
2 level tbsp plain flour
1 rounded tsp of oregano or marjoram
1/2 level tsp fennel or caraway seeds, crushed (optional)
400ml creamed tomatoes or passata
250ml light chicken or vegetable stock made with 1 tsp vegetable bouillon powder or half a vegetable stock cube
2 large or 3 medium-sized red peppers
1 kg baby new potatoes
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the side dishes
284ml carton of sour cream
6-8 sweet and sour pickled cucumbers, finely sliced
A small handful of fresh dill or parsley, finely chopped (optional)

Trim the pork steaks of excess fat (but don’t worry about leaving a bit - it will help the texture of the goulash) and cut into large cubes. Heat a large casserole or frying pan, add 1 tbsp of the oil, heat through again then add enough pork pieces to cover the pan in a single layer. Brown on both sides, remove with a slotted spoon and set the meat aside. Remove with the remaining meat, adding a little extra oil with each batch.

Once you’ve fried all the meat add another 2 tbsp of oil to the pan and tip in the onions. Stir and fry them for about 5-6 minutes until beginning to soften. Add the garlic, sweet and hot pimenton or paprika and tomato paste if using, stir well then return the meat to the pan. Stir to ensure the meat is thoroughly coated then add the flour, oregano, fennel, creamed tomatoes and stock. Bring to the boil then cover the pan, turn the heat right down to a bare simmer or transfer the pot to a low oven (140°C/275°F/Gas 1). Cook for 2 - 2 1/2 hours, checking from time to time that the meat is not cooking too fast.

After an hour and a quarter, cut up, de-seed and slice the peppers, removing any white pith, add them to the pot, stir and replace the lid. Boil the potatoes until just tender (about 10 minutes) then add them to the pan half an hour before the end of the cooking time, carefully mixing them into the sauce.

Check the seasoning, adding salt and pepper to taste. Bring the goulash to the table and serve in soup bowls with side dishes of sour cream, sliced pickled cucumbers and finely chopped fresh dill or parsley so everyone can help themselves.


* Paprika and pimenton generally come in two versions - sweet and hot. Ideally you need both for a goulash. Spanish pimenton has the better flavour if you can afford it. You can find it in delis and bigger branches of Sainsbury's

* Ovens vary considerably in temperature so use the suggested temperatures as a guide line (If you have a fan oven you should be able to cook on a lower temperature.) Basically with a stew like this you want to cook it as slowly as possible so that you just see the odd bubble appear on the surface.


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