The Insert Credit Cookbook (the recipe thread)

It has been a whole year since the April 2022 Art Jam and the Delicious Goulash recipe. I've been cooking meat-free (and mostly fully plant-based, but I still eat some cheese and I still use some eggs) since July 2022 and I wanted to revisit and update that recipe. The weather is turning cold over here, which means that it is officially Goulash Season.

Vegan Goulash, 2023 Edition

Prep Time: 20 - 60 mins, depending on how fast you chop?
Cook Time: 3 - 4 hours
Total Time: 5 hours + overnight rest
Servings: 6 - 8? depends on how big your serves are but you should get a lot out of this


Veggies and stuff:

3 brown onions (or 2 if they‘re huge)
4 cloves garlic (or more, I’m not gonna stop you if you want to use 12)
1 tsp ginger (about 2" worth from a root)
1 leek, most of the very green part removed
3 ribs celery
2 large carrots
750g potatoes
400g mushrooms
1/2 cup red lentils
2/3 cup brown or green lentils

Dry spices etc:

2 tbsp sweet paprika
1 - 1.5 tsp hot paprika
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1/4 tsp nutmeg
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp majoram, or “mixed herbs” if you don‘t have or can’t find it (my market ran out!)
1/4 tsp msg (optional, but I find it is an excellent umami booster)
1/2 tsp ground black pepper (I don‘t measure this I just grind with my pepper mill until it seems about right)
1/2 tsp salt (I don’t measure this I just take a good pinch that is approx 1/2 tsp)

Liquids etc:

1 tbsp tomato paste
100ml red wine
1 cup veggie stock (I use this “chicken style” one)
1 sachet instant dashi powder (I use this kombu & shiitake one)
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp worcestershire sauce
1 tsp balsamic vinegar


3 tbsp plain flour
1 large bay leaf (or 2 small ones)
1 tbsp coconut oil
olive oil
1 - 2 cups water



Slice the leek lengthwise, leaving about 1" still connected at the root end. This will let you wash it thoroughly and get between the layers – they are always full of dirt and sand.

Finely dice the onion, celery and leek. Mince the garlic, mince or grate the ginger.

Peel the potatoes and cut them in to about 5cm chunks (about 2"), and put the pieces in a large bowl with water so they are covered.

Chop the carrots in to pieces approx the same size as your potato. I like to use a rangiri rolling cut for this.

Wash and slice your mushrooms. These can be in 1/2 or 1/4 chunks, or thinner slices based on your own mushroom preferences.

Rinse both types of lentils together until water runs clear through them.

Measure out all the dry spices. These can all be placed in one small bowl or container, they will all be added to the pot at the same time.


Cover the bottom of a large, heavy pot (I use a large dutch oven) with olive oil, and add the coconut oil.

On medium-low heat, add the onions, leek, celery, garlic, and ginger with a pinch of salt. Stir and sweat these until the onion turns translucent, but be careful not to brown them. By the time the onions are ready the leek should have also wilted/sweated down a bunch.

Add the tomato paste, and stir and mix through while frying off the raw paste for a few minutes.

Once the tomato paste has started changing colour (it should start heading towards a rich teracotta) add all the dry spices and stir through continually for about a minute, until they become fragrant.

Drain the potato bowl.

Add the potato, carrot, and mushrooms to the pot, stir to mix through and get all the veggies covered in the spices and onions.

Raise the heat slightly, and add the wine (or water, or juice) to deglaze the bottom of the pot. Allow this to simmer for a couple of minutes, to reduce down a little and to cook off some of the alcohol.

Add the dashi powder and the liquid stock, stir well to combine everything and allow the mixture to come up in temperature to a simmer.

Add the lentils and mix through.

Add the flour one tablespoon at a time and stir through, resulting in a fairly thick mixture.

Add about a cup of water while continually stirring, to thin everything back out.

Add balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, worcestershire sauce, and bay leaf. Stir through, and allow everything to come up to a gentle simmer.

Put the lid on the pot and reduce heat to very low. After the first 20 minutes you'll likely need to add another 1/2 - 1 cup of water, because the lentils will be soaking it up.

Continue to cook with the lid on over low heat for at least 2 hours, up to about 3.5 - 4 hours. Every 15 - 20 minutes give it a good stir and scrape the bottom to make sure nothing is sticking. Be sure to test a piece of potato and carrot with a knife before stopping, to make sure they are properly cooked through.

Take off the heat and allow to cool down. Once cooled, remove the bay leaf and then place in the fridge to rest overnight.

To serve, reheat in the same pot. If you don't use it all, allow to cool and put back in the fridge. Next time, reheat in the same pot again. It will improve with every iteration of this, and will keep in the fridge easily for 4-7 days without a problem.


The red wine can be omitted if you want to not use any alcohol. You can use water in its place when deglazing, or apple juice.

The sharpness of this dish can be adjusted via the amount of cayenne or hot paprika used. To make it sharper I usually use more cayenne rather than more paprika. To make it milder I would suggest omitting the cayenne entirely, but still using the hot paprika. Taste the sauce after it has been simmering covered for about an hour, to see if you need to adjust anything. An extra splash of vinegar or perhaps some lemon juice can help balance it out if it is a little too sharp and not feeling quite right. If a touch of sweetness is required you can add a splash (1/2 - 1 tsp) of maple syrup.

Can be served with some crusty bread or rolls, with rice, or over pasta – however I still highly recommend that you pair it with the knödel as detailed in the original Art Jam post.

Like any dish of this sort (stews, curries, etc) it only gets better over time. If you really must you can serve it right away, but letting it rest for at least overnight in the fridge helps build the flavour and significantly improves the overall experience.

This dish also freezes well. I like to portion out individual serves to freeze, and they'll keep well for 3 - 6 months frozen. To serve, defrost and then reheat in a small pot, probably adding a little bit of water.

I don‘t recommend microwaving to reheat, I’ve had uneven results attempting to do so in the past.

Here‘s a pic of this after about 3 hours of slow simmering this evening. It is now cooling off before I put it in the fridge, to be eaten tomorrow. I’m using all my willpower to not have some right now, but it really does make such a difference that the wait is worth it.