Well, before you expect a traditional Hungarian recipe then I have to admit this is anything but a traditional dish. It was inspired by the original Lecsó (pronounced like LEH-CHOW) but it is now a very summery vegetable dish that is not only so light on the stomach, fulfilling but tastes so fresh and very good. And I'm not only saying it because it is my and my family's creation. We don't let the vegetables go completely mushy so they lose all the vitamins, no, in this dish the vegetables remain a slight crisp to them. That is what makes it so good. And the fresh herbs that are inevitable in my kitchen.
As I already insinuated to it, it is one of my family's go-to recipes. If we get home after a long day and there is nothing to eat but the fridge is full of yellow paprika (or pepper), tomatoes, onions then the result is always Lecsó. It comes together pretty quickly and is very healthy. Well, these are the 2 words that characterize my cooking. It must be healthy and should be ready in an hour.
Except for baking. It doesn't matter that I will spend my day and night in the kitchen if it is for the sake of a delicious creation. I see art in baking. It is a form of expressing ourselves. At least, this is how I feel when I bake. I feel happy, excited, extremely curious and very inspired. And if the baby didn't turn out as I thought it would? Well...I get way too disappointed but I don't give up, it just gives me the determination that I WILL most certainly succeed the next time and I become the expert of this-or-that. :)
But back to the Lecsó...It is very similar to the French Ratatouille but doesn't consist of so many different vegetables. Although, I do add extra zucchini that would never be in a traditional Lecsó but I just love squashes :) Okay, I stop talking and give you the recipe.
for 4 people
5 big yellow paprika (pepper) - cut into strips
5 big tomatoes
4-5 spring onions or 2 purple onions
1,5-2 cups chopped bacon or pancetta
Chop the onions, bacon and paprika while you heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a big pan. Add the bacon, stir for 2 minutes and add the onions. Sprinkle salt and pepper on them.
Cook for another 2-3 minutes and then add the paprika. Cook for 10 minutes. Add more salt if you desire.
Add zucchini and cut the tomatoes to bigger chunks. They don't have to be cut equally because they will lose their shapes anyway.
Add chopped basil leaves, oregano and thyme. Cook for another 10 minutes until there is enough vegetable juice under.The vegetables shouldn't be too soft, except for the tomatoes.
Serve it with bread or rice. We eat it with cooked buckwheat. Or you can put some sour cream on top if you like. Enjoy :)