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The traditional hungarian shepherd food
The name “gulyás” comes from hungarian language and it means neatherd, herdsmen, shepherd. “Gulya” means herd of cattle.

This delicious dish known as gulyas (goulash) can be traced back in time till the medieval period, when the hungarian neatherd in the Puszta (Pannonian Steppe) prepaired it on the open fire. At that time, the main ingredients were beef meat (as it was the only one they had) and as vegetables, lots of herbs and wild roots found while they grazed their herds of cattle.

Always on the move, the neatherds didn’t cook everyday, so the gulyas was a good way to keep food for few days. Because the beef meat and bones and the wild roots needed to be cooked for long time on the fire, in the end the gulyas had a thick and gelatinous consistency and it could be preserved for longer periods.

In time, the Gulyas spread over Central Europe and today this dish has many variations as soup and stew, in which different veggetables and meat are used. In old times, paprika, which nowadays is one of the main spices to seasone the gulyas, was not used until the 16th century, as well as the potatoes, which were unknown in the original receipe.

The most used ingredients in a good goulash prepaired in these days are: meat (beef, veal, pork, lamb) – shank, shin or shoulder – usualy cut into chunks, carrot, parsley root, celery, potatoes, onions, cayenne, red paprika, garlic, caraway seeds, bay leaf, thyme, salt, pepper, and stock to simmer the gulyas.