Sunday, October 18, 2009

Austrian Goulash & Semmel Knoedel (Bread dumplings)

I had so much fun at our family Oktoberfest, this Saturday-- though, I cooked for hours.

For heaven's sake! No, those aren't my real "knoedel's"! It's a printed vest!

I have several recipes to share with you, but today, I'm starting with the star of the show-- Austrian Goulash and Semmel Knoedel.  This is a dish that I have never seen in a German restaurant in the United States. It's a dish that is very common in Southern Germany and Austria. Think of this as a beef stew, with a rich tomato sauce that is seasoned with paprika and some caraway seeds.  My favorite way of enjoying this dish is with semmel knoedel (KA-NEW-DEL). The dumpling is cut in half, and into bite-size pieces to soak up the gravy. Heaven!  My second favorite way is to serve this with spaetzle.

I like to use two thinly sliced onions, which is a perfect job for my mandoline.

Hungarian Hot Paprika is a key ingredient for this sauce. I found it, easily, at my local grocery store.

The aromatics are hot paprika, sweet paprika, sliced garlic lemon zest, caraway seeds, kosher salt & pepper, tomato paste and tomato sauce.  The key to this dish is to sear the meat to leave lots of brown bits on the bottom of the pan.  Later, I'll deglaze all of that with chicken stock.

If you haven't had success with searing meat, here's  a quick review on how to do it:

You will need a large Dutch oven with a lid for best results. Add just enough olive oil to coat the pan and turn the heat high enough to make the oil shimmer, but not smoke.

Pat the meat dry and dredge in flour, seasoned with kosher salt & cracked pepper.

Add one piece of meat to the hot oil to make sure that it sizzles. Add the remaining meat, without crowding the pan and sear for about 3–4 minutes per side.

You want a golden crust that will give the gravy great flavor.
Cook the meat in batches, if necessary and set aside in a bowl—to collect the juice.

Look at all that flavor on the bottom of the pan!

Save the juices from the meat-- it's more flavor for the sauce

When all the meat is seared, turn the heat to medium and add a little more olive oil to the pan and cook the onion until tender—3–4 minutes. Add the sliced garlic and cook till fragrant—30 seconds or so.
Add the tomato paste and paprika, and cook for 1–2 minutes.

  • Add the tomato sauce, caraway seeds, lemon zest and chicken stock and stir well.
  • Return the beef and the juice to the pot.
  • Cover with a lid and bring to a simmer for about 15 minutes and taste for seasoning. Adjust as necessary. If the sauce is too thick, thin with a little more chicken stock or water until it is the consistency of a gravy.
  • Simmer for 2 hours, or you can use a slow cooker for 4–6 hours.

 This tureen came from my great-grandmother-- it's over 100 years old and I love it!

This stew tastes even better if made one day in advance. Serve or buttered egg noodles or homemade spaetzle or Bavarian Bread Dumplings—recipes can be found by clicking on the recipe name.

German recipes I will be sharing with you over the next few days:
Bavarian Semmel Knoedel

Mutti's Famous German Potato Salad (seriously, she sold out of it everyday at her deli)

Bavarian Plum Tart with fresh whipped cream

Chairve (cream cheese spread)

My recipe for Bavarian Red Cabbage, perfected is already posted:

I realized, last night, that I have always made these recipes from memory-- just the way my mother taught me. This is the first time I've measured and tried to create recipes for anyone who might want to try Bavarian recipes.  How I wish my mother was alive to see this.  These recipes bring back so many fond memories. My two brothers, niece and my son enjoyed it so much-- and that makes all those hours of standing in a kitchen worth all the effort. We spent the rest of the evening remembering my mother's life during WWII and her adventures in Bavaria at that time.  We are all storytellers around a table full of good food and beer!

My husband deserves a special hug for helping me. I realized that I didn't take one picture of him! Sorry, Sweetie! At least you were in German food heaven-- which I know he loves. He even puts up with my goofy siblings, but we always have fun.

Happy Oktoberfest! I hope you try to make your own.

I always post a printable recipe card at the end of each recipe post. If you cannot view it, you might be using an older version of InternetExplorer. You should be able to view my recipe cards with Safari, Mozilla, Google Chrome and Internet Explorer.
If you still can't view the recipe card, all of my recipes are stored on Key Ingredient, by clicking here.

From my mother's heritage to your kitchen,

Pin It


Velva said...

The Goulash looks wonderful. That is a perfect Sunday supper. I need to put this recipe in my must make file. very nice!
By the way, I ad to take a double take when I saw the printed vest. The first thought I had was whoa-are those hers?

I have been really enjoying your blog.

Muneeba said...

I did a double-take too when I saw your new boobs ... hilarious .. I should surprise my hubbs with something like that! The goulash looks so warm & wonderful ... the color turned out amazing!

Stacey Snacks said...

That potato salad has me drooling!
I am hysterical with the knudel apron! I am glad you put a caption underneath, because I thought you bought some new boobs and were showing them off for Oktoberfest!
You made my day Deb!

Simple Simon said...

Wow! That Goulash looks like it would warm you through and through. I can't wait to try to make it one of these cold, rainy northwest fall days.

Debinhawaii said...

Gorgeous Goulash--looks so hearty and good! Thanks for sending to Souper Sundays!

Monica H said...

I saw that picture of you and thought was a lovely photo it was then I swa the boobs! ha ha!

You all look like you had a lovely time, remembering your mom, celebrating together and eating very well. that's so awesome!

A Feast for the Eyes said...

Velva, I wish you had an email so I can say "thanks" for your compliment.

It seems that my dirndl vest has been a big hit! For those of you who asked me (privately) where I got it:


Cheryl said...

I also did a double take thinking wow nice boobs, LOL! You are a cooking goddess, I am so impressed and I bet it tasted incredible!

T.W. Barritt at Culinary Types said...

I really wish I could have eaten everything you picture - the goulash looks SO rich and comforting!

TKW said...

Laughing my butt off at those bodacious ta-ta's on that vest!

The goulash looks so dad would flip over that dish!

Valerina said...

I am not a huge fan of goulash but yours looks quite delicious!

That vest is hysterical. Goodbye padding! I could really use one that goes with normal, everyday wear. :)

Donna-FFW said...

LOVE the steam coming off in that first photo, and your shirt, may I borrow it for sat night;)

What a lovely gorgeous meal. Cant wait to see the rest up close and personal, ya know like that shirt.

Mary said...

Your photos are just spectacular. I'm sure your goulash tastes as good as it looks.

The Short (dis)Order Cook said...

Ha! That vest is too funny!

thanks for sharing these great family recipes. How wonderful to have your own Oktoberfest tradition. The Goulash looks wonderful and it's great to know that I'm learning a recipe that's not something I could find easily.

I'm looking forward to your knoedel recipe. I love dumplings of all sorts!

Danielle said...

LOL @ the vest! that is just too funny! What a fab dish there (no...not the fake "knoedel"...the other dumplings!!)

Deborah Dowd said...

This goulash looks amazing, and I am not usually a fan of Bavarian food. And I have to say I love your vest- this would be an awesome apron!!

Proud Italian Cook said...

When I first saw that vest I said wow, Deb's looking pretty good! That is hilarious... You can see all these recipes were made with love, everything looks outstanding. Can I come next year??

bella said...

Hi Debby, On this simple Friday evening, while the guys are watching football on TV, my mother was commenting on how much she loves "goulash" and your photos....however, we could not find the ingredients or procedures....what did we miss in your post? It looks simply magnificent! Love, Roz

cls74 said...

Snowed in today in Pennsylvania, my husband and I decided to try to make your goulash and bread dumplings – and they turned out beautifully. They taste just like we had on our honeymoon in Austria in November. THANK YOU!!!

Columbus Foodie said...

This recipe (Goulash & Semel Knoedel) was always a childhood favorite of mine - I always used to help my Oma make it when I was little, but a lot of the details have faded with time. This sounds exactly right, though (even down to how we'd use the leftovers the next day). I'll be making this today - thank you so much for posting the recipe, and I look forward to the other German recipes you'll be posting. :)

Natalie Green said...

Adding this to my wedding buffet!

Actually, finding your blog is a dream for someone marrying a German man whose family are coming over to the US from Bavaria to celebrate our wedding!

Gloria (The Little Red House with the White Porch) said...

Debby, every time I come to your blog, I always come to this recipe to "visit" it because it looks so damn delicious! I have to make it one day. I made something similar once, but it didn't look as delicious as yours!
P.S. That is a beautiful tureen that you have too.

Kate said...

Oh Debby, you are a gal after my heart! What delicious cookin' is going on at your house. After my trip to Prague and Germany this fall I have set out to find a recipe for Goulash and Dumplings....I thank you for the goulash and I can hardly wait for the dumplings...

German Potato Salad and Red Cabbage are standard sides at our house!

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for sharing your Mutti's Austrian Goulash recipe! I made this last weekend in my crock pot and it was absolutely phenomenal! My Southern German husband said it was just like back home, and the meat just melted in your mouth. Served it with some homemade spatzle. I will definitely be trying more recipes from your blog to continue to improve my 'German house-wife' skills! :D

Jonathan Ladret said...

I wanted to make your goulash, my moms side of the family is from Austria, and my grandma made this dish. But I noticed in your instructions that there were no measurements for the ingredients?

Maximilian said...

I have some good family fiends in Austria and so often eat goulash when I visit them, I love it but have never been able to replicate that taste in my own kitchen (in the UK).

Last night I used this recipe to cook for my university friends and it was fantastic! It tasted just like my Austrian friends make it and reminded me of my holidays! It also went down very well with my friends here. So thank you for your blog and recipes!

Debby Foodiewife said...

You are so welcome Maximilian! I'm so glad this was what you hoped it would be. It's just how my Mutti made it for me, when I was a kid.

Lisa A said...

I cannot wait to try the potato salad, I'm making it today for Memorial Day. I have to share with you that after reading a few of your posts, I stumbled on this page with your apron. I am laughing so hard right now as I did not read the blurb below the picture till way later. I finally figured it out but it gave me quite a start before I did.


Papa Louie said...

WoW! fantastic recipe. I love the way you handle meat!. Love this blog!

Rachel Page said...

Very tasty, although we found it a bit too thin so I added a bit of cornflour at the end to thicken it up.

Katie Anne said...

My boyfriend has always talked about the goulash that his grandmother used to make for him, so I decided to make it for his upcoming birthday. He was raised by his grandparents, and remembers smelling the goulash cooking on the stove all day long and not being able to concentrate on anything else! I hope this comes close to his grandmother's recipe from Austria! I'm hoping our slow cooker will do the trick, rather than a stew pot!

Somerset Spa Lady said...

Ah, I saw there was a lot of goulash in Prague when I visited, but I never got round to trying it. I'll have to sample this recipe!

Ursula @ said...

Mhhhhh Goulash! One of my fav dishes!!! It's the perfect comfort food. Yours looks delicious!