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Ghoulish Goulash

This spicy stew is very ghoulish, especially if served wearing Dracula teeth and a black cape

Posted: 1 October 2008
by Junior

Count Dracula may have been created by Bram Stoker in 1897, but many believe he was based on Vlad the Impaler, who existed four centuries earlier. He was originally from Transylvania (now Romania and Hungary). Like Dracula, goulash hails from eastern Europe. It was first made in the ninth century by Hungarian shepherds to keep them warm while they were out in the snow. 

Serves 6


1kg (2lb) braising steak, cut into 3cm cubes 
A glug of olive oil
A knob of butter
2 red onions, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
11/2 tbsp paprika
1 tbsp flour
A glass of red wine
2x400g tins of tomatoes
300ml (1/2 pint) of beef stock
1 tbsp tomato purée
1 tbsp ketchup
A handful of sun-dried tomatoes
2 red peppers, cored and cut into slices
150ml sour cream
Salt and pepper


Preheat the oven to 150˚C/ 300˚F/Gas Mark 2. Season the steak with salt and pepper. Heat the oil on your stove in a large pan that has a lid. Brown the steak in batches on all sides, then put aside. 

Turn the heat down and add the butter to the pan. Add the onions and cook until they are soft. Add the garlic and then return the steak to the pan. Add the paprika and flour and stir. Pour in the wine followed by the tinned tomatoes, stock, tomato purée and ketchup. Season, bring to a simmer, then cover with a lid. Leave to bubble away quietly. 

After an hour, add the peppers and sun-dried tomatoes then cook in the oven for two hours. Serve with mashed potatoes or, for a truly authentic eastern European flavour, dumplings, and then top with a delicious dollop of sour cream that complements the spices perfectly. 

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