Monday, January 7, 2008

Meat Goulash with Macaroni

1 pound short pasta, such as macaroni, ziti rigate or gemelli
1/2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO)
2 slices lean bacon, chopped
1 pound ground meat (a mixture of beef, pork and veal)
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 small onion, finely chopped

2 teaspoons smoked sweet paprika
Freshly ground pepper
3 large jarred roasted red peppers, drained
3 tablespoons tomato paste
2 cups beef broth
1/2 cup sour cream
Flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped (a generous handful)
Fresh dill, chopped (a generous handful

1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt the water, add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain the pasta and set aside.
2. While the pasta cooks, heat the EVOO, 1/2 turn of the pan, in a large, deep skillet over medium-high heat. Add the bacon and cook until crisp, about 3 minutes, then move the bacon to the side of the pan and add the ground meat, crumbling it. Brown the meat for 3 to 4 minutes, then add the garlic and onion; season with the paprika and salt and pepper to taste. Cook until the onion is softened, about 5 minutes.
3. In a food processor, puree the peppers until smooth and stir into the meat. Add the tomato paste and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, then stir in the beef broth and simmer for a couple of minutes. Stir in the sour cream and cooked pasta. Top with the parsley and dill.

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