For me this is real comfort food and I prepare it pretty frequently. Try it and you probably will, too. This must be one of the most misnamed recipes in all of cuisine. The name, székely gulyás, pronounced seh-key goo-yahsh (sort of)
means gypsy goulash in Hungarian. Only it probably isn’t a gypsy recipe and it’s not a goulash. It’s technically a pork pörkölt with sauerkraut and sour cream. Even people who don’t like either pork or kraut will like this. Last weekend I prepared it for my brother-in-law who’s a Californian and certainly didn’t grow up with Central European food. After eying it suspiciously and tasting it gingerly he wolfed it down like he’d never seen food before.
1 lb. pork cutlets, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
2 Tbsp. cooking oil
3 Tbsp. Hungarian paprika
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. ground marjoram
1 lb. fresh sauerkraut
½ cup sour cream
- Saute the onion in the oil in a 4 quart saucepan over medium heat until the onions just start to brown.
- Add the pork and saute until just browned.
- Add the paprika, black pepper, marjoram, and salt and saute for about 30 seconds.
- Add just enough water to cover the meat.
- Reduce the heat, cover the pan, and simmer for a half hour (add water if it gets low—it shouldn’t get either dry or soupy).
- Rinse and drain the sauerkraut thoroughly.
- Add the sauerkraut to the pan, stir in thoroughly, bring up to heat, and simmer for another 20 minutes.
- Add the sour cream to the pan, mix thoroughly, reduce the heat to low and simmer until it’s warmed completely—about 10 minutes.
Serve this with plain boiled potatoes and some good rye bread. If you want a salad, peeled sliced cucumbers with sour cream and dill would be good. A little strudel for dessert and you’ll be all set.
One final note: please, please use Hungarian paprika. Anything else is only good for coloring.