Maybe you're saying to yourself, "Oh Katie, that's silly - I couldn't possibly neglect my plans/errands/life to do nothing for an entire 24 hours." Oh but you can. Just sleep in and make a choice to do nothing. Oh wait, you will need one thing to if you plan to do nothing....sustenance.
Autumn weather and pajamas make me think about warm and cozy suppers. I'm talking about the kind of comfort food that warms your entire body. If you're going to be lazy, your food should be lazy too, and a slow cooker is the perfect solution. You can lay on the couch while your food cooks itself, making your entire home smell fantastic.
When I was a kid, my dad always made goulash during the winter. Traditional goulash is a hungarian stew, that pulls most of it's flavor from paprika, red peppers, lots of onions and caraway seeds - and my family always had it over egg noodles. When I decided to make goulash a few lazy Saturday's ago - I was faced with a problem: 1. I had no idea if it was healthy 2. I had no idea how to make it.
Since most recipes that I try from Eating Well turn out great - I decided to try their lightened-up version of goulash. It's very non-traditional, but tasted really fantastic. This recipe really helps you stay lazy, you don't even have to sear the beef before you let it braise! The spice rub ensured that the meat was really flavorful and by the time it was done cooking it was literally falling apart. I tasted the broth within the last hour of cooking and adjusted the seasoning a bit, just based on my own tastes (increased the salt a touch and added a bit of cracked black pepper).
I decided to serve my goulash on its own without any added carbs - but I think it would be great over egg noodles or with potato. We had ours with a simple salad with vinaigrette and a bottle of red wine (hey, it's the perfect way to end a lazy Saturday).
What's your favorite comfort food from your childhood? Leave a comment or shoot me an email because I'd love to try the recipe.
PS...wondering what happened to my promise of a month of chili recipes? Coming soon, it's taken me awhile to gather the best of the best, but you will not be disappointed.
Hungarian Beef Goulash from EatingWell.com
- 2 pounds beef stew meat, (such as chuck), trimmed and cubed
- 2 teaspoons caraway seeds
- 1 1/2-2 tablespoons sweet or hot paprika, (or a mixture of the two), preferably Hungarian (see Ingredient Note)
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 1 large or 2 medium onions, chopped
- 1 small red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes
- 1 14-ounce can reduced-sodium beef broth
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 2 tablespoons water
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- Place beef in a 4-quart or larger slow cooker. Crush caraway seeds with the bottom of a saucepan. Transfer to a small bowl and stir in paprika, salt and pepper. Sprinkle the beef with the spice mixture and toss to coat well. Top with onion and bell pepper.
- Combine tomatoes, broth, Worcestershire sauce and garlic in a medium saucepan; bring to a simmer. Pour over the beef and vegetables. Place bay leaves on top. Cover and cook until the beef is very tender, 4 to 4 1/2 hours on high or 7 to 7 1/2 hours on low.
- Discard the bay leaves; skim or blot any visible fat from the surface of the stew. Add the cornstarch mixture to the stew and cook on high, stirring 2 or 3 times, until slightly thickened, 10 to 15 minutes. Serve sprinkled with parsley.