Enikő Bali

Geologist, Current residence: Reykjavík, Iceland (Home: XV. district (Rákospalota), Budapest, Hungary)

These are a bit more time consuming dishes, but I think they worth the time. Most of them are "Hungarian style" dishes. Not necessarily made the traditional way.

1) Paprika chicken with mushrooms

You can make this dish with or without mushrooms and with or without sour cream.

Ingredients (for 4 persons):

1 chicken in pieces, alternatively you can use your favourite parts (breast, wings, thighs...)

1 larger onion

250 g of mushrooms (if you wish)

1 paprika

1-2 tomatoes

paprika powder, salt, pepper

150 g of sour cream


1. Heat up the oil in a pan and slice up the onion into small cubes.

2. When the oil is hot enough put the onion in it with some salt and fry it until it gets "glassy".

3. Add 1-2 tea spoons of paprika powder at this point.  Stir it quickly and then add a little bit of water, in order to avoid the burning of the paprika.

4. When it is boiling you can add the meat and the pressed garlic, tomatoes and the paprika.  Have the meat "whiten" on all sides then you should add enough water to cover the meat.  Cover the pan and cook it until the meat gets loose on the bones.  If you use meat without bones, you can check its "softness" by a knife.

5. When the meat is almost ready you can add the mushrooms.

6. After a few minutes you can add the sour cream and let it boil.  Then it is ready.

You can serve it with pasta or rice.


Many cases I just buy chicken breast and cut it in small cubes.  It is ready in approximately 20 minutes.  Using larger pieces of meat of course it takes longer time.

2) Goulash soup (Cowboy soup)

Goulash (gulyás) abroad is thought to be a kind of stew.  In Hungary if we are talking about goulash generally we mean this soup. As its name shows traditionally it is made of beef, but you can use any kind of meat.

Ingredients (for 4 persons):

300g nice beef meat (something what is used for steak)

400g potatoes

1-2 carrot

1 parsley

1 onion

3 segments of garlic

2 table spoon of oil

1 tea spoon of paprika powder (a little bit of hot one)

1 tea spoon of salt


1. Cut up the onion into small cubes, and the meat also into 2*2*2 cm cubes.

2. Put up the oil with the onion and salt and fry it until it gets "glassy". Be careful not to burn it. Then add the paprika powder mix it quickly and add a little bit of water not to let it burn.

3. Add the meat and some pepper. Stir it in the oily onion until it gets "white" at all sides (more or less) than add as much water as covers the whole stuff and put a top on the pot and cook it for approx 45 minutes. Time to time you should check and stir it, to prevent burning, and sometimes you should add some water just to cover the whole.

4. Clean the carrots and parsley and cut them in halves (along their axes).  After 45-50 minutes you can add the carrots and the garlic and 15 minutes latter the parsley. Always add as much extra water which is enough to cover the whole stuff.

5. When the carrots are getting soft you can add the potatoes which you should cut in cubes similarly to the meat.  At this stage the whole thing had been cooked for approx 1.5 hours.  So you add the potatoes and the caraway (as much as you like, not too much), and cook it until the potatoes are ready. 

The whole thing should take 1hr 45 min-2hrs.  Beef needs lots of time.  While the meat is "stewing" you have time to clean and cut up the vegetables.

3) Vegetable soup with chicken as I like it Vigyor

Ingredients (for 4 persons):

2 carrots

2 parsley

3-400 g chicken breast

1 big onion

2-3 segments of garlic

a half teacup of peas

3-2 mushrooms

1-2 teaspoons of salt

pepper (as you wish)

parsley leaves cut very fine

bit of oil

1. Clean the carrots and parsley and slice them approx. finger thick disks. Put a bit of oil into the pot and put the slices with 1 teaspoon of salt into moderately hot oil. Cover the pot to have the vegetables soften a for a few minutes. 

2. In the meantime clean the chicken breasts and garlic.  Cut the chicken breasts into small cubes. You can put the meat and garlic (not pressed) into the pan and stir it, until the meat gets white at all sides.  After that pure some water on it, just to cover everything. Cook it for approx 10 minutes covered.

3. In the meantime you can peel the onion and wash the mushrooms and parsley leaves.  You should cut the onion in 4 big pieces and put it in the soup.  Pure a bit more water.

4. When the carrot is quite soft you can add the peas and some more water.  Depending on the final amount you might need to add some more salt, you should taste it.

5. Slice up the mushrooms and cut the parsley leaves to very fine. When the peas are almost soft (approx 5-7 min of cooking).  Add the mushrooms.  Mushrooms need very little time.  At the end you add the parsley leaves but you do not have to cook with it for more than a minute.

If you want you can add some pasta (specific for soups), but it is not really necessary.  You will end up with a very rich soup.

4) Lentil soup with prunes (for 4 persons):


250 g lentils

3-4 bay leaves

3-5 segments of garlic

1 teaspoon of salt

150 ml of sour cream

1 tablespoon of flour

Prunes, as much as you wish.

1. The day before you have to put the lentils in water.

2. Put up the lentils with the garlic, prunes and spices in approx 2 liters of water.

3. When the lentils are soft you mix the sour cream with the fluor than with a little bit of soup and during continuous stirring you add it slowly to the soup. You have to boil the whole soup together and then it is ready.

5) Spicy meat balls (Hungarian way)

Ingredients for approx 400 g meat:

400 g minced meat (can be any kind of meat, best is pork)

2 slices of dried bread (2-3 if toast bread)

1 egg

2 segments of garlic

1-1.5 teaspoons of salt

0.3 teaspoon of hot paprika powder

2 teaspoons of sweat paprika powder



1. Put the dry bread in some water.  Not too much, just as much as it soaks.

2. Mix all other ingredients perfectly (garlic should be pressed). 

3. Press out the water from the bread.  It should "disintegrate".  Mix it with the meat too.  You should have a perfect mix of spicy meat.  You can do it best with hands. 

4. Than you can form little balls. If you put the meat mix into the fridge for 10 minutes it might be easier to form the balls.

5. Put them in hot oil (2-300 ml!) and fry them. You should fry both sides fast, then decrease the heat and make it ready "under cover".


You should serve it with mashed potatoes or boiled vegetables.

6) Chicken breast "spiked" (tűzdelt) with garlic and bacon

Honestly I did not find a correct term for this procedure in English. Maybe it exists, but I will explain exactly what I am doing in this case.  We regularly use "spiking" technique for meat which can be lean and quite dry.  The "spiking" material can be anything, spices, garlic, bacon. I will show it on chicken breast.

Ingredients (for 1 person):

1 chicken breast

1 segment of garlic

few g of quite fatty (best smoked) bacon

salt, pepper


1. Cut the bacon and the garlic in small elongated pieces (see picture below).

2. Make small holes in the meat with a pointy knife (see picture below).


3. Put the garlic and bacon pieces into the holes and add some salt and pepper on it.  As the bacon is salty in itself, it should not be salted too much.

From this point you can fry it in a pan or put it on BBQ, I generally wrap it in Al-foil and bake it in approx. 20-25 minutes on 200 C.

You can serve it with any side dishes.

In this picture you see it ready with "rosemary-potatoes" (see on the following page).


7) Pork medallions as I like

You can make it of any part of the pork which is not fat.

Ingredients (for 2 persons):

4-6 slices of pork medallions

1/2 bottle of beer, any kind would do Nevetés

approx. 100 g of Dijon (!!) mustard

pepper, flour

150 ml vegetable oil

garlic if you wish


1. Start a day before Nevetés. Cover the slices of meat with dijon mustard.  I prefer the traditional one or the one with Provance spices.  Put the meat in a small container and cover it with vegetable oil. Put it in the fridge for overnight.

2. Warm up a few table spoons of vegetable oil in a pan. 

3. Fry both sides of the slices fast, to get a crust on them, then decrease the temperature and pure half a bottle of beer on it.  Cover the pan and wait until the meat is ready (~10-15 minutes, depending on the thickness).

4. Take the slices out and mix a table spoon of flour to the "juice", to have it thickened a bit.  Mix it fast, to avoid the formation of nodules.

5. When you serve it, you can pure this sauce on it.

I would serve it with mashed or rosemary potatoes.

As you see I did not use salt.  The dijon mustard will make it salty enough!!

8) Beef stew with or without red wine

You can make it with or without red wine, both are tasty.

Ingredients (for 2-3 persons):

2-300 g of lean beef meat

1 middle sized onion

1 tomato

1 green paprika

salt, pepper, paprika powder

dry red wine

1-2 segments of garlic


1. Cut up the onion into small cubes, and the meat also into 2*2*2 cm cubes.

2. Put up the oil with the onion and salt and fry it until it gets "glassy". Be carefull not to burn it. Then add the paprika powder mix it quickly and add a little bit of water not to let it burn.

3. Add the meat and some pepper. Stir it in the oily onion until it gets "white" at all sides (more or less) then add as much water as covers the whole stuff and put a top on the pot.

4. Add the sliced up tomato and paprika. Cover the pot and cook it slowly.

5. The water will evaporate after a while, you will have to fill it up (only to cover the meat) and stir the whole thing time to time in order to avoid burning.  From the second fill up I used to use dry red wine.

6. When it is almost ready add the pressed garlic.

It takes 1.5-2 hrs to cook it.  I serve it with boiled potatoes.


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