Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Hungarian - 'Leczo' - Style Soup with Beans

With our immune systems working overtime to beat back the winter frost, what more could one want than the medley of vitamin filled vegetables and tender smoked, spiced sausages in this Hungarian styled paprika soup. This is a dish I've indulged in many times during my trips to Poland, and round at friends’ houses, and my version is branded with it's traditional Hungarian origin, but confusingly labelled 'Leczo' (the Polish translation) - only to be further modified with the addition of hearty beans. Served with sour cream and fresh crusty bread - this is a dish I could devour endless amounts of.

What went in mine…?

Now I did cheat here, using tinned ingredients in some instances – but what’s cooking if we can’t enjoy at least a few of the easier things in life.

Tip: Break up the plum tomatoes by squeezing them in your hand as you add them to the pan (it’s a little messy, but strangely desirable at the same time).

2 x Tins Whole Plum Tomatoes
1 x Tin Kidney Beans (drained)
1 x Tin Baked Beans (plus sauce)
500ml Boiling Water
2 x Courgettes (roughly chopped)
2 x Large Sweet Red Peppers (roughly cubed)
1 x Medium White Onion (finely chopped)
3 x Cloves Garlic (crushed)
200g Smoked Sausage (roughly chopped)
1 x Chicken Stock cube (I use the Knorr Stock Pots – which are now gluten free!)
1 x Tsp. Smoked Paprika
2 x Tsps. Sweet Paprika
1 x Tsp. Hot Paprika or Chilli Powder (optional depending on your pallet for spice)
2 x Tsps. Sugar
Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper to taste
Sour Cream to serve (optional)

How I did it...?

1. In a frying pan brown the sausage in a little oil on a high heat, until the outside of each piece is sealed and nicely brown. Turn the heat down and sweat the chopped onion and garlic until translucent. Add this to a large, deep pan (that has a lid) – keeping as much of the oil/fat out as possible.

2. To the cooked sausage, onion and garlic add all of the other ingredients (except the kidney beans, baked beans and sour cream), breaking up the plum tomatoes into much smaller pieces (you could use chopped) Bring to the boil on a high heat, stirring occasionally and then leave to simmer on lower heat for 30 mins.

3. After 30 mins, stir well and add the drained kidney beans (no need to rinse) and the baked beans. Give this a good mix and then simmer for another 45 mins.

4. Season to taste, adding any more of the paprikas or chilli powder if you desire.

5. Serve piping hot, with a dollop of sour cream on top and a dusting of smoked paprika.

Happy cooking,

The CC :) xx

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