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|Hungarian Paprika Potato Sausage Stew
Kolbászos Paprikás Krumpli
Hungarian Paprikás Krumpli is probably the most popular peasant dish among
Hungarians. Although it is not an elaborate dish, rather a comfort food that
warms your heart and soul on the coldest of winter days. If you add Kolbász -
Hungarian Sausage, the dish just gets better.
It is believed that Hungary’s national spice, the "fiery Red Paprika" makes this
dish the "KING" of everyday meals. Although today, Red Paprika is the symbol
of Hungary, it hasn't always been this way. For centuries, Hungarians used only
simple spices like salt, black pepper, caraway and marjoram.
A vast array of sausages are produced in Hungary. The most common smoked
sausages are Csabai Kolbász and Gyulai Kolbász. The different regions in
Hungary all have their own sausage recipes and tastes. Sausages are prepared
in countless ways: fresh, dried, boiled or smoked; with different flavours and
spices to produce “hot” or “mild”. Whether eaten as a cold cut or incorporated
into a main course dishes, it is a favourite. Classic Hungarian Cuisine uses the
sausages in a variety of ways; in vegetable and bean soups, vegetable stews,
potato stews like “Paprikás Krumpli”.
This recipe that I am about to share is a favourite in our home. Without
sausage it is simply called Paprikás Krumpli.
DIRECTIONS: Cut sausage into slices on the diagonal. Clean and peel onions
and cut into small-medium chunks. In a large, heavy pot, fry onions in bacon
fat. Add paprika to the fat and allow it to ‘bloom’ only a minute. Then, add
sliced sausages and sauté for 10 minutes. Add caraway seeds, salt, pepper and
garlic. Add potato wedges. Then, tip pot to the side and pour just enough
water to cover tops of potato wedges (about 2 cups). You don’t want to wash
off the paprika -it’s precious like gold! Bring to a rolling boil, then turn down
heat, ¾ cover with a lid and let it simmer 20-30 minutes. At the 20 minute mark,
pierce fork in potatoes to check if done. Then, if it’s ready, don’t cook a minute
longer. Depending on the type of potatoes used, you could end up with MASH –
and that’s not what you are looking for. We recommend Yukon Gold because
you want the potatoes to be firm, holding their beautiful wedge-shape, but soft
on the inside.
CHEF’S HINT: Add the hot paprika at the end (so as not to frighten your
guests) But, if you know you are comfortable with Hot and Spicy, add the
paprika when you add the sweet version during the blooming stage.
WARNING: Bacon fat is highly addictive. The texture of the fat is highly
workable and yields an incredibly delicious subtle flavour to everything you
prepare with it. Relax, you love 2 slices of crunchy, fatty bacon on your burger –
so what’s the fuss with 2 tablespoons in a meal that serves 4-6 adults?
SERVING SUGGESTIONS: Fresh Hungarian White Bread to soak up that
beautiful paprika and onion sauce and Hungarian Dill Pickles.
WINE PAIRING: Hungarian Table Wine – Red. Szekszárdi Vörös or Egri
Bikavér (“Bull’s Blood of Eger”)
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