Chicken Paprikas -- Hungarian old style

Michelle Koletar/Mertz


If you are looking for a healthy, low-calorie dish, then by all means keep browsing, 'cause this ain't it! However, if you want to indulge in authentic Hungarian fare that tastes simply delicious, I don't know that you can do better than chicken paprikas. My mom's side was Hungarian, & I am so glad so that it introduced me to dishes such as this! Made with lots of Hungarian paprika, this meal is one of my all-time favorites. My mouth waters just thinking about it. This recipe is the way renowned Hungarian cook June Meyer, makes her chicken paprikas, as well.

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15 Min


2 Hr


4 lb
chicken parts, bone in, skin on. (i use one large breast & thighs/legs)
onions, chopped
4 Tbsp
shortening or oil (i always use crisco shortening)
3-4 Tbsp
hungarian paprika (i use sweet)
1 & 1/2 c
water (or 1 cup water & .5 white wine)
black pepper, salt
8 oz
sour cream
12 oz
bag of noodles or make homemade dumplings
8 oz
optional --fresh mushrooms

Directions Step-By-Step

Melt the shortening over medium in a large fry pan or skillet. (I use an electric skillet).
Add the chopped onion & brown. Then add chicken parts, patted dry, with salt & pepper on them. Cook skin side down about 5-7 minutes, until getting golden, then turn over & brown for another 5 mins. Sprinkle with fresh black pepper or add peppercorns & some salt. Updated NOTE: I am told that adding the paprika when you are browning the onions gives it more flavor. I did this today when I made it (8/4/13) and it came out beautifully. I added the paprika with the onions, some more w/ the chicken, and then recipe is the same.
Turn chicken back to skin side down (I use tongs so it doesn't splash) & then add water & 2-3 TBS Hungarian paprika. (NOTE: I use 1 cup of water & 1/2 cup of white wine. This is not the authentic Hungarian way, but I think it adds wonderful flavor.) I also add mushrooms b/c I love them, but this is my own taste.
Simmer on low-med for about 1.5 - 2 hours. Turn chicken over occasionally. The most difficult part of this dish is how great it smells as you have to wait for it to be done! You can add a little bit more water and/or wine, if you like.
When chicken is nice & tender, remove and let cool off a bit (I cool it in a large Dutch oven). When you're able to touch it without scalding your fingers, remove the meat from the bones & skin. (You don't have to do this, you can serve the chicken pieces whole, I just like it better this way). Leave any juice that came off from the chicken in the Dutch Oven.
Meanwhile, add 8 oz (half container) of sour cream to the onion & drippings in the fry pan & mix well. I add at least 1 more TBS paprika. Keep heat on low & do not let it boil! Add the chicken back in. I like fresh parsley to be added at this point, too.
I then cook egg noodles, using the same Dutch Oven, that may have some of the chicken juice in it. Either serve w/ individual platters of noodles & then the chicken poured on top. Or... I cook the noodles about 3 minutes less than package calls for & then I pour the chicken mixture over top about half of the noodles, mix, add more noodles, more chicken, stir, etc. until it's the consistency I want. I don't always use the whole package of noodles. I just like the noodles & chicken all mixed together, but most people like it poured over top instead. Sprinkle with fresh ground black pepper. Enjoy!

About this Recipe

Course/Dish: Chicken