This recipe is the real deal. Authentically goulashy with nary a elbow macaroni in sight nor does it have any ground beef in it. Real Hungarian goulash. Yum. I got this recipe from America's Test Kitchen. You can always trust an America's Test Kitchen recipe to turn out fabulous and this one is no exception. The beef is tender and the sauce is flavorful. I'm really glad I put the work in on this one, though man I burned my eyes out chopping all those onions!
3-4 lb beef roast (chuck or chuck-eye is good), trimmed of excess fat and cut into 1 1/2 inch cubes
1/3 cup sweet paprika (really important to use sweet paprika for an authentic taste)
1, 12 oz jar roasted red peppers, drained and rinsed
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 teaspoons white vinegar
2 tablespoons canola oil
4 large onions, finely chopped
4 carrots, peeled and cut into 1 inch pieces
1/2 teaspoon crushed bay leaves
1 can beef broth
1/4 cup sour cream
black pepper to taste
Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees. Place beef cubes in a bowl and sprinkle evenly with 1 teaspoon of salt. Allow to sit for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile place drained red peppers, paprika, tomato paste, and 2 teaspoons vinegar into a food processor or blender and process until smooth, scraping sides to make sure all the paprika gets mixed in. Scrape this mixture into a bowl and set aside.
In an oven safe dutch oven (I use an enamel covered dutch oven) combine oil, onions, and 1 teaspoon of salt and cook over medium heat, stirring for about 8-10 minutes, or until onions are softened but not browned. Stir in paprika mixture and cook for about 2 minutes. Add beef, carrots, and bay leaves. Stir until beef is well coated. Using a rubber spatula scrape down the sides of the pot. Cover pot and transfer to the oven.
Cook for 2- 2 1/2 hours or until meat is almost tender, stirring every 30 minutes. Add enough beef broth so that the surface of the liquid is 1/4 inch from the top of the meat (don't stir the broth in). Return to oven and cook until a fork slips easily in and out of beef, about 30 minutes longer. Remove from oven. Stir in sour cream, season with black pepper and serve over buttered egg noodles.