As the windy, cold winter nights draw in, keep warm with this hearty Slovenian stew
Until 1919 the Prekmurje region was under Hungarian administration shaping the gastronomic image of the province with numerous features, which originate from the neighbouring culture. The same happened with prekmurski bograč or bógrač gúlaš, which is nowadays one of the most recognisable and popular dishes from Prekmurje. The name “bograč” comes from a cooking pot or a large cauldron, which the Hungarian shepherds used to cook either beef or pork stew with an addition of boletuses, seasoning, and wine.
Later on (from the 19th century onwards) bograč was added potatoes and venison, in Prekmurje as well. The expression “goulash” itself is also of Hungarian origin, i.e. gulyás, which actually refers to a cattle stockman. A dish, which is technologically comparable to the Slovenian goulash, is in Hungarian called pörkölt. But goulash primarily refers to a thick greasy stew made of meat, onions, paprika, potato, and pasta.
Today bograč is an adequately thick stew made of three types of meat, spices, wines, possibly mushrooms (in season) and potatoes, which is served in little kettles. The general popularity of the dish is attested by a special gastronomic event called bogračijada, where caterers and amateur cooks compete in the preparation of bograč.
250g boneless beef
250g hare or other venison meat (boar, deer)
4 onions, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tbsp lard (or 100 ml oil)
1 tbsp fresh paprika
100g tomatoes or 1 tbsp tomato sauce
2.5g ground red paprika
1 bay leaf
1 tsp ground pepper
Pinch of salt
200ml red wine (such as the Blue Frankish wine)
1. Fry onions in oil, add diced beef, and stew. Add water, if needed.
2. Add diced venison and stew until the meat is half done.
3. Add also diced pork, sliced vegetables, spices, and ground paprika.
4. Add salt, mix, and boil over.
5. After some time spread the potatoes cut into segments over the top and cover with water making sure the potato is fully immersed. Cover the pot and stew until soft.
6. Pour wine and boil again.
7. Taste the dish and additionally season, if necessary.
Recipe provided by the Slovenian tourist board