November 03, 2010

Beef Goulash with Polenta

I saw a goulash dish being made on the food network, and for the first time in the past 13 weeks, I have really wanted to make meat. My lucky husband. Now, my grocery store was out of caraway seeds so I just left them out. I don't know if that is allowed in goulash, but don't be mad.

Beef Goulash
2 pounds beef, cut into 1-2 inch cubes (the better the cut, the more tender your final product)
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, finely diced
4 carrots, peeled and diced
1 jalapeno, seeded, deviened and chopped finely
3 garlic cloves
3 Tbsp tomato paste
1 Tbsp whole caraway seeds, toasted and ground
2 Tbsp paprika (if you have sweet and hot in your house, do a little of each!)
1/2 tsp red chili flakes
2 tsp ground marjoram
1 tsp thyme
3 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
3 cups chicken stock, low-sodium
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

Season the beef with the salt and pepper, to taste. In a large oven safe Dutch oven over medium-high heat, add the olive oil and heat until just smoking. Add the beef in batches, being careful not to crowd and be sure to brown the meat on all sides. (Make sure you have your fan going... or else your fire alarm might go off and scare your 20 month old). Remove the meat from the pan to a baking sheet, or something that can catch the juices.
Add the onions and carrots to the pan and cook for 5 to 6 minutes, the moisture from the onions will loosen the bits at the bottom, so stir often. Add the peppers and the garlic and cook until caramelized and all of the liquid is evaporated. Stir in the tomato paste and cook about 1 minute. Add in the caraway, sweet and hot paprika, the red chili flakes, the marjoram, and thyme.
Deglaze with the balsamic and let reduce for 2 minutes. Slowly add the stock, then add the beef and any juices collected from the meat. Add the bay leaves, season with salt and pepper, to taste, and stir gently to combine.
Cover and cook in the preheated oven for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, stirring occasionally. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper, to taste. Garnish with fresh parsley (no, we were out, so I used cilantro - and it was just as tasty). Serve with creamy or polenta if desired.

**Yes, I know there is red pepper flakes and a jalapeno, but I promise it just gives a little spice - not really "heat." Don't be nervous.

1 comment:

Hannah said...

mmm. I can't wait to eat a little polenta. This looks really, really yummy.