I have loved Chicken goulash and Lamb Goulash, have cooked them for gatherings as these stews are so easy to cook in large quantities. Someone requested for a vegetarian goulash recently and my mind started tickling. I always love the vegetables part more in Goulash type stews, the chunky carrots and potatoes, sometimes thick slices of zucchini and loads of red bell peppers and marjoram. I add loads of celery as well, just because there is always fresh celery from the garden. The stew is a very flavorful mix of vegetables, as much as it is about the meat and the meat stock. But then, you wont miss the meat stock or chunks of meat if you are a vegetarian.
And the best thing is, this is a stew in a hurry. Being posted in a hurry as well. It was cooked yesterday for lunch, was meant to be shared by evening but somehow things didn't workout. I am sure it is being cooked in some kitchen tomorrow. Be ready for a deep red bell peppers flavor laced with fragrant herbs.
red bell peppers chopped roughly 1 cup
tomatoes chopped roughly 2 cups (you might like to blanch and remove skin)
roughly chopped red onion 3/4 cup
roughly chopped carrots 1/2 cup
chopped ribs of celery 1/3 cup
finely chopped garlic 1 tbsp
soaked, cooked and rinsed (squeezed too) soy nuggets 1 cup or more
baby potatoes with skin, halved 3-4
salt to taste
red chilly powder 1/2 tsp
paprika powder 1 tsp
shahi jeera/siyah jeera (Caraway seeds) 1 tsp
Olive oil or butter 1 tbsp
marjoram dried or fresh, a generous handful
chopped leaves of celery 1/3 cup (optional)
Heat the oil or butter in a pan and tip in the mix of garlic, onion, carrots and celery (the mirepoix). Add salt to taste and baby potatoes, fry this mix for a couple of minutes or till it all gets translucent. Now add the chopped tomatoes and red bell peppers. mix well and add the celery leaves if using.
Add the red chilly powder, paprika powder and the caraway seeds as well and keep cooking till the tomatoes get squishy.
Add 2 cups of water and the soy chunks, add the marjoram as well and cook covered till the potatoes are cooked. It will need simmering for about half an hour on low flame.
Adjust the consistency of the stew as you want it, adjust seasoning too.
Break eggs gently over the cooking stew, cover and cook till they set.
Serve in soup cups or bowls and have it hot. It is a complete meal, or just have a few crudites.
I did not miss meat in this vegetarian goulash. The herbs and the red bell peppers make it really flavorful in a very unique way. You can make it more chilly spice if you like. Three types of peppers make the chilly flavor rock. It will be your favorite if you love the smell of chilly peppers. Marjoram pairs with them magically. Celery is optional.
It is a great way to eat soy chunks if they feel boring to you. I have always loved the texture and their ability to absorb flavors.