Monday, March 28, 2011

Around the World with Contessa - Austria

The hills are alive with the sound of music.  La di da di da!!!! Ah, first thing that pops into my mind about Austria besides Wolfgang Puck (well maybe vienna sausages, too? lol). If you don't know, he is an Austrian born celebrity chef and restaurateur and the dishes that I prepared was inspired from the "last supper" episode of Top Chef.  Wolfgang Puck wanted one of the contestant (go Richard Blaise!) to make goulash and apple strudel that his mother used to make when he was little.  B and I watched this episode with "oooohh's," "aaaahhhh's," and "hmmmmm yum." Funny that as soon as B saw what Richard Blaise prepared for Mr. Puck, he immediately thought of how his mommy used to make him goulash as well.  Being a good wifey that I am, I offered to make it for him too. LOL!

Here is my version of an Austrian Goulash and Apple Strudel. This is probably the closest thing of being in Austria (unless B decides to take me there on a whim ;-). What would have been a two hour of cooking was reduced to half an hour. Thank God for my pressure cooker. I was finally able to put it to use.  

If you ask me, this is a just a typical beef stew, which is similar to what my mom would always make. What sets this goulash apart is the combination of sweet Hungarian Paprika, carraway seeds and sour cream. Can you say yum? Carraway seeds are usually used in italian sausage and using these seeds are very traditional in European cooking. It has a sweet and slightly peppery aroma.  Traditionally, it's served with potato dumplings or what they call a Spaetzel (a type of egg noodle). I just substituted it with elbow macaroni instead.  

I served mine on a bed of Spinach.

Contessa's Goulash
two and half pounds of grass fed chuck roast
chopped onions

minced garlic
2 parnips minced
2 carrots chopped
2 medium potatoes chopped
2 medium tomatoes chopped
carraway seeds
hungarian sweet paprika
salt and pepper
sour cream
worcester sauce
green pepper sliced lengthwise
2 beef cubes
If you have a pressure cooker, I suggest you use it. It will cut your time in an hour. But you can just easily use a dutch oven.  Season the beef with salt and pepper and brown them first.  Make sure you do it in batches.  Saute onions (in butter if you prefer, I used EEVO) and season with paprika until golden brown. Add 2 beef cubes and let them melt. Add the browned meat and stir together. Add minced garlic, parsnips, chopped tomatoes, carraway seeds and continue stirring together. You may add beef broth or water at this time. Usually the beef has a lot of juices too that you don't need the extra liquid. Let it simmer until beef is tender. When you are half way there, add carrots, potatoes, and green peppers. Let it simmer until vegetables are cooked. Mix a littie bit of the goulash sauce with two tablespoon of sour cream and add it to the pot for a thicker consistenency. Add a dash of worcester sauce at the end. Season to taste.

Meanwhile cook your elbow macaroni in a salted boiling water for 7 minutes. Let it drain and arrange it in the bottom of the pan. Top the macaroni with some parmesan cheese and pour the goulash on top. Put a dollop of sour cream if you like. 
While B is served on a bed of elbow macaroni. 

So much easier with the pressure cooker. The meat was so tender juicy. LOL!

Apple Strudel
Recipe was taken from Pepperidge Farm's website. Not sure if that an authentic Austrian strudel but close enough. HEHE! Just click the link.  Although the picture doesnt look as soon as mine. It was still good and B and I finished the whole log of strudel lol. I almost have to lick the ice cream off my plate. It was that good. So easy and simple to make too!
Freshl out of the oven.

Served with vanilla bean ice cream...yum!
You think if Mr. Puck would taste my versiof of goulash and strudel, he would have preferred mine over Richard Blaise's? Dream on! lol

I am off to Belgium on my next post with Around the World with Contessa . Focusing on Western Europe right now:-)

Have a great Monday!
Bisous, Contessa


  1. I really should stop reading your blog at night, especially when all I had for dinner was coleslaw lol
    These look really good by the way. Haaay.

  2. Thanks C. You are funny. Don't worry you got all week to catch up with your meat:-)