Legendary Dishes | Gulyásleves (beef soup)


Buda and Pest are among the few centres of civilisation in Europe where the peasant culture is still reflected in the choice of traditional foods available in urban restaurants.

In Budapest soups start every meal, and most of the time that meal is a stew. The exception is gulyásleves, the beef soup outsiders confuse for goulash when it is bogracsgulyas or pörkölt they should ask for.

Gulyás is often served as a main course accompanied with egg-flour noddles.

Kéhli, one of the city’s oldest restaurants, specialises in traditional food including bean, beef, chicken and fish soups and the range of stews. Sípos Halászkert serves a diverse range of fish soups.

  • 1.5 litre of water
  • 900 g beef, cubed 2 cm
  • 500 g potatoes, diced small
  • 500 g onions, chopped
  • 300 g parsnip / turnip, diced
  • 300 g tomatoes
  • 250 g carrots, diced
  • 250 g green or red peppers
  • 100 g celery, cut small
  • 30 g lovage leaves
  • 4 garlic cloves, mashed
  • 10 g paprika, hot or sweet
  • 5 g caraway seeds
  • 2 bay leaves
  • black pepper, pinch
  • salt, pinch
  • Oil, for frying

Sauté the onions in the oil for 30 minutes, increase heat and brown the beef. Reduce heat, stir in the tomatoes and peppers, add the garlic and cover. Leave to simmer for 30 minutes. Add the bay leaves, caraway seeds and paprika. After five minutes add the vegetables, remaining seasonings and water. Cook until the potatoes are al dente.