Nostalgia is a funny thing; foods that we'd typically turn up our nose at can seem weirdly appealing, thanks to happy memories. Rather than dine on a subpar meal in the name of authenticity, Food Orleans did it one better and revamped a childhood lunch-line favorite: hearty beef goulash.Goulash is a dish that Paul and I have radically different memories of. I grew up eating the 1970's school-lunch version known as "Goulash Supreme," which consisted of soggy macaroni, bland ground beef, and stewed tomatoes. I should point out here that when I was a kid, I actually liked it. And that it's pretty much the only thing called "goulash" I remember eating, ever, anywhere. And that I'm ready for a better goulash to take its place in my life.
A few weeks ago I asked my dad if he could give me his recipe for goulash. I grew up eating this tomato-pasta-ground-meat goodness — which is nothing like Czech goulash — on a regular basis and was really craving it. However, when I asked him for it, he just laughed and said there was no real recipe. He tweaks it and makes it up each time, depending on what is available. So I went to the store, grabbed a few items, and made my own version.
The dish is easy enough for a weeknight meal, but hearty enough for a weekend. If you want to see how mine came together, read more