Tag Archives: hungarian

Chicken Paprikash

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Chicken Paprikash is another traditional Hungarian dish that is popular in my family, but unlike lecso we don’t only make it when my grandmother is in town. While it is a hot dish my family loves it all year round and we make it for all kinds of special occasions; I often request it for my birthday dinner.

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The key to this dish, as the name would suggest, is really good paprika. Good HUNGARIAN paprika, none of this spanish stuff. As the only seasoning other than salt in this dish you want to have a paprika that is neither too sweet, spicy, or smoky and the Pride of Szeged has always been the paprika of choice at my house.

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With a delicious sauce thickened with sour cream and served with some spätzle and green beans it is a delicious dish that takes some time to prepare but is not difficult. Give it a try some Sunday night and I know you will love it!

Chicken Paprikash
A recipe from my grandmother (and slightly adapted by my mother)

Ingredients
2 1/2 – 3 lbs of bone-in, skin on chicken breasts and thighs
3 TBS fat of your choice (a good Hungarian would use lard, we use vegetable oil)
3 large onions, diced
3 heaping TBS paprika
2 tsp salt
a splash of water (if needed)
1 cup sour cream
3 TBS flour

Method
Place diced onions in a large soup pot and saute in fat until golden. Remove from heat and add paprika. Put back on heat and add chicken pieces (skin side down) so they are nestled in the onions. Let cook covered. Stir occasionally, making sure there is enough liquid in the pot, add up to a 1/2 cup of water if it looks too dry. Simmer covered until done, flipping the chicken when you think you’re about half way done. Remove the chicken from the pot and set aside, removing the skin if desired.

Add to the pot a combination of 1 cup sour cream and 3 TBS flour, cook on low until sauce has thickened to desired level. Serve chicken and spätzle (or other starch) covered in the delicious sauce. Enjoy!

Lecso

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Lecso (lecho or IPA: lɛtʃoʊ) is a typical Hungarian dish that consists of tomatoes, onions, peppers, and sausage. We love to have it when my grandmother (a Hungarian) comes to visit because she can get some amazing Hungarian sausage from a butcher near where she lives.

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This is a simple set-it and let-it-cook dish once you’ve done all the chopping, which isn’t really all that much. It has great flavor but isn’t too spicy. Served with boiled potatoes, a slice of seeded rye bread, and a slather of dijon mustard for dipping (if that’s your thing), it makes a wonderfully hearty mid-winter meal. We often make it at family gatherings in the summer too, but I definitely prefer it as a winter dish.

Lecso
a recipe from my grandmother

Ingredients
1 tomato per person (large dice)
2 green peppers per person (large dice)
1/2 large onion per person (large dice)
1-2 Hungarian debreczeni or other mild smoked sausages per person
1 TBS paprika
Salt

Method
Heat some vegetable oil in the bottom of a large stock pot. Saute all the veggies, starting with the onion. Once the onion is sauteed, remove from heat and add the paprika. Turn the heat back on and add the green peppers and some salt (but not as much as you think you’ll need). Cook this on medium-high heat until peppers are soft to a knife pierce and reduced in bulk by about 1/3. Add the tomatoes and more salt (this is the last of it). Cook covered over medium heat until the tomatoes have lost their shape. Add sausage, making sure that they are submerged in the liquid the vegetables have created. Cook for 30 minutes on medium heat, uncovered if you think there is too much liquid (there usually is). The final consistency should have some broth but not be too soupy.

Serve with boiled potatoes and rye bread!