This one-pot dish is a cold weather saviour. We used St Piran’s pork shoulder and bacon, and added a spoonful of sauerkraut from Delea Fermented Foods for added goodness. Prepare this the day before, stopping before you make the dumplings and add the sour cream. When you’re ready to finish and serve, simply gently reheat the goulash (you may want to add 50-100mls of water to loosen), add the dumplings and pop in the oven for 30 minutes.
For the pork:
800g boneless pork shoulder, cut in 2cm pieces
1 tbsp vegetable oil
5 rashers smoked back bacon (thin sliced)
2 white onions, finely chopped
½ tsp cumin seeds
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp smoked paprika
500ml chicken stock, preferably homemade, just enough to cover mixture
4 bay leaves
1 tsp oregano
3 red peppers, sliced thinly
250g sour cream
50g Sauerkraut, drained (optional)
chopped chives, optional, for serving
For the dumplings:
150g self-raising flour, plus a little extra
70g suet or soft butter
Small handful of thyme, chopped (optional)
1 tsp toasted and crushed fennel seeds
Put a large, thick-bottomed saucepan on a medium to high heat and while it’s heating up drain any liquid from the pork and pat dry with some paper towel. Add a splash of vegetable oil and put the pork in the pan, season a little with salt and pepper and brown until coloured all over. Transfer the browned meat to a bowl.
In the same pan, heat a little more oil, then add the bacon and onions. Cook over a moderate heat until softened and very lightly browned, which should take about 10-12 minutes. Sprinkle the paprika (regular and smoked) over the onions, stir and cook for 5 more minutes.
Stir in the pork pieces, bay leaves, oregano and all of the stock, covering the meat. Bring to the boil, cover and reduce the heat. Simmer for 1 hour, then add the sliced peppers and continue cooking with the lid on for another 30 mins, until the pork is very tender. Season with salt and pepper.
Whilst your stew is bubbling, make the dumplings. Weigh the flour into a bowl and add ½ tsp salt. Rub in the suet or butter to create a breadcrumb-like consistency, then add the thyme and fennel seeds if using. Make a well in the centre and add 3 tbsp of cold water, and mix to a dough, adding more water until the dough is firm but pliable. Divide into 8-12 equal pieces and roll into balls, using a little extra flour if needed.
Preheat the oven to 160 °C.
When the dumplings are ready, stir the sour cream into the pork stew, and arrange the dumplings on top. Cover with a lid. With the oven up to temperature, cook the stew and dumplings for 20 minutes, then remove the lid and cook for another 10 minutes until they’re brown and puffed up.
To serve, divide into bowls and top with chives, a spoonful of Sauerkraut if you fancy, and some crusty bread. You can swap out the dumplings for boiled potatoes or tagliatelle for some variation.