Margarita's International Recipes



Beef in Paprika Sauce


Pörkölt is a very traditional and simple Hungarian dish. It takes a while to make, as it requires quite a bit of chopping and a lot of time simmering. It's supposed to be delicious but, as I made it, it was just OK - which is entirely my fault.

When I went to make the stew, I discovered that I had forgotten to put bacon on my shopping list so I didn't have any. I used butter instead, but apparently lard or bacon are absolutely essential to this dish (so they are included in the recipe below). I also used the wrong cut of meat for this dish. London broil (top round) was on sale, and as I use this cut on my regular stew without major problems, I thought it might work for this recipe. It does not - the meat was incredibly dry. Do use chuck if you make it.

In all, while I was happy to try this, I don't think I'll make it again.



  • 2 Tbsp of lard or 4 thick slices of bacon, diced
  • 1 yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large tomato, chopped
  • 1 1/2 lbs stewing beef, cut into 1/2" cubes
  • 1/4 cup Hungarian paprika
  • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp crushed caraway seeds
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 bay leaf


Melt the lard over medium-high heat in a medium cooking pot. Alternatively, cook bacon until the fat is rendered. Add the onions and cook until soft. Stir in the green bell pepper and the garlic and cook for two minutes minute. Stir in the tomato and cook for another minute. Then add the beef and cook for a couple of minutes more. Turn off heat.

Stir in the paprika, salt, caraway seeds, black pepper and bay leaf. Slowly pour water into the pot until the bottom half of the beef is covered.

Return to the stove and bring to a boil. Once it boils, cover and turn down heat to low to medium-low heat and simmer until the beef is cooked through, about 90 minutes.

Adapted from a recipe at The Daring Gourmet.

Hungarian Recipes | Marga's International Recipes | Marga's Best Recipes | Marga's Food Blog | E-mail