Hungarian Goulash

Inspired by my grandmother's recipe for slumgullion, I embarked upon the process of recreating this dish. Since she made most of her meals without a recipe, I took all her hints and tips and worked on the taste. Creative cooking is hard to duplicate and there are many secrets only your grandma will tell you. Serve with shredded cheddar cheese and buttered French bread.

    1 teaspoon olive oil
    1 pound lean ground beef
    1 ½ cups chopped yellow onion
    ½ cup diced celery stalks
    ½ cup diced green or red bell pepper
    2 teaspoons seasoning salt
    1 tablespoon dried oregano
    2 tablespoons dried basil
    ¼ teaspoon freshly ground Tellicherry peppercorns
    ¼ teaspoon ground cayenne, optional
    ¼ teaspoon chili powder
    2 garlic cloves, crushed in a garlic press
    1 tablespoon dried parsley
    1 teaspoon sugar
    1 (14 ½-ounce) can Mexican-style stewed tomatoes, undrained
    1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
    1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
    2 cups water
    1 (8-ounce) package medium size elbow macaroni

1.  In a 5-quart nonstick sauté pan, brown the beef in oil over
     medium heat. Set aside and drain off all the oil.

2.  In the same pan, fry the onion, celery and green or red bell
     pepper until onion is translucent. Add the salt, oregano, basil,
     pepper, cayenne, chili powder, garlic, parsley and sugar.
3.  Add the tomatoes, tomato paste and sauce. Stir in the
     water; simmer on low (covered with a splatter
     guard) for up to 1 hour. The sauce will thicken.

4.  During the last 20 minutes, boil 6 quarts of water in a
     12-quart stockpot. Cook the macaroni just until soft.

5.  Toss the cooked noodles with the meat sauce.

     Makes 6 servings