This time of year just calls out for a nice big pot of soup or stew, something to warm you and the whole house while it cooks. This recipe gets a deep color (and a rich flavor that’s more sweet-savory than spicy) from a big dose of sweet paprika and roasted red peppers.
This takes a little work upfront, prepping and sautéing the vegetables and spices. But then it roasts slowly in the oven, with little attention needed, so it’s a perfect dish to try out on a lazy weekend afternoon.
Hungarian Beef Stew
1 (3 1/2- to 4-pound) boneless beef chuck-eye roast
1/3 cup sweet paprika
1(12-ounce) jar roasted red peppers, drained and rinsed (about 1 cup)
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon white vinegar
2 tablespoon olive oil
4 large onions, diced small (about 6 cups or 2 lbs.)
4 large carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch-thick rounds (about 2 cups or .5 lb.)
1 bay leaf
1 cup beef broth
1/4 cup sour cream, optional
Fresh Ground black pepper
Cooked egg noodles
Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees. Sprinkle meat evenly with 1 teaspoon kosher salt and let stand 15 minutes. Process paprika, roasted peppers, tomato paste, and 1 tablespoon vinegar in food processor until smooth, 1 to 2 minutes, scraping down sides as needed.
Combine oil, onions, and 1 teaspoon salt in large Dutch oven; cover and set over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onions soften but have not yet begun to brown, 8 to 10 minutes.
Stir in paprika mixture; cook, stirring occasionally, until onions stick to bottom of pan, about 2 minutes.
Add beef, carrots, and bay leaf; stir until beef is well coated. Using rubber spatula, scrape down sides of pot.
Cover pot and transfer to oven. Cook until meat is almost tender and surface of liquid is 1/2 inch below top of meat, 2 to 2 1/2 hours, stirring every 30 minutes. Remove pot from oven and if needed add enough beef broth so that surface of liquid is ¼ inch from top of meat (beef should not be fully submerged). Return covered pot to oven and continue to cook until fork slips easily in and out of beef, about 30 minutes longer.
Skim fat off surface and add sour cream, if using. Remove bay leaf, adjust seasonings with salt and pepper, and serve.