Beef Stroganoff

My prior version of Beef Stroganoff pales is not nearly as good as this new 2010 version from Cook’s Illustrated. This version marinades the beef in soy sauce, building complex flavors using a mustard paste (instead of brandy), and using more mushrooms (and quartering them instead of slicing). Certainly, this recipe makes a bigger mess in my kitchen, but the flavors are much richer, and the beef is cooked to a tender perfection. Bottom-line: I’m switching my cookbook to this 4-1/2 stars version.

Best Beef Stroganoff ever; worth the extra mess in the kitchen.

Comments:

  1. I’ve been making this version of Beef Stroganoff for more than 5 years. I loved that everything was made in just one skillet, including the egg noodles which boiled in the sauce until tender. But as I prepared to make Chris Kimball’s updated 2010 Beef Stroganoff recipe, I noticed that my prior recipe actually came from another website; not this 2002 Chris Kimball recipe to which I had incorrectly attributed it.
  2. While this recipe calls for Sirloin Tips (or blade steaks), I substituted Beef Tenderloin because I had 3-lbs of tenderloin left over from my Father’s Day Feast. Tenderloin is common in many Stroganoff recipes, and the technique used here of cooking beef separately from vegetables is perfect for this substitution. The beef can been cooked until tender rather than just boiled in the sauce until tough, solving the the problem I mentioned with my prior recipe about overcooking the beef.
  3. Also, I had 3-pounds of beef (instead of 1-1/2 pounds). I used it all, but browned it in 2 batches.
  4. I had been slicing my mushrooms with the prior recipe, but the microwaving of quartered mushroom resulted in perfect texture.
  5. Here the egg noodles are boiled separately. No big deal, but another pot to clean. One great feature of my prior recipe was boiling the egg noodles directly in the sauce. But there is no arguing with the fact that this recipe outclasses the other.
  6. The $18 price tag is a bit deceptive, because I am using “scrap” tenderloin from my stuffed tenderloin, plus I’m using twice the meat called for in the recipe. $15 of the cost comes from 3-pounds at $5/lb. Obviously, you could make this recipe for less.

Rating: 4-1/2 stars.
Cost: $18.
How much work? Medium.
How big of a mess?  Medium.
Start time 5:00 PM. Dinner time 6:45 PM.

Chris Kimball’s original recipe is here. The descriptions of how I prepared the recipe today are given below:

1-1/2 lbs sirloin steak tips (I substituted 3-lbs of beef tenderloin)
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1-lb white mushrooms
2 teaspoons hot water
1 tablespoon dry mustard
1 teaspoon sugar
Ground black pepper
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 medium onion
Table salt
2 teaspoons tomato paste
4 teaspoons flour
1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon white wine (or can use dry vermouth)
1-1/2 cups beef broth
1/2 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
8-ounces of wide egg noodles

  1. The recipe calls from trimming away any excess fat from steak tips and slicing with the grain into 4 equal pieces. Because I used beef tenderloin, my beef was not quite as uniform.
  2. Poke each piece of steak with the tines of a fork 10 to 12 times. Place beef in Pyrex baking dish and rub both sides with soy sauce. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  3. While meat marinates, wipe the mushrooms clean and quarter them. If any of the mushrooms are larger than 1-inch, cut them into 6 pieces instead of 4. Put in microwave-safe bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Microwave the mushrooms on high power for 5 minutes; the mushrooms should decreased in volume by half and there should be as much as 1/4-cup of liquid at the bottom of the bowl. Drain and discard the muddy liquid, and set the mushrooms aside until step 8.
  4. Fill a large pot of water and bring to a boil. This will be used to cook the egg noodles only you have obtained a rolling boil.
  5. Finely chop 1 medium onion, which should yield about 1 cup.
  6. Combine 2 teaspoons of hot water, 1 tablespoon dry mustard, 1 teaspoon sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper in small bowl. Mix together until it forms a smooth paste, then set aside until step 10.
  7. Use a paper towel to pat the steak pieces dry and season with 1/2 teaspoon of ground pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a regular (not non-stick) 12″ skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil is just beginning to smoke, cook steak pieces for 9 minutes until it is browned on all sides. You should reduce the heat if the fond begins to burn. Check the beef’s internal temperature according to your desired degree of doneness. Chris Kimball likes medium rare; which is 125 to 130 degrees. I cooked until 140-degrees. Move meat to large plate and let rest while cooking sauce.
  8. Add the microwaved mushrooms (from step 3), diced onion, and 1/2 teaspoon salt to the now empty skillet. Cook for 7 to 8 minutes until vegetables begin to brown. The moisture from the onions will begin to deglaze the pan.
  9. Add 8-ounces of egg noodles to boiling water, and boil for time recommended on the package.
  10. Add tomato paste and sprinkle flour into skillet. Cook for 1 minute, stirring to coat the onions and mushrooms. Add in 1/3 cup wine, beef broth, and the mustard paste from step 6. Use a wooden spoon to scrape up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Bring the sauce up to a simmer, then reduce the heat to medium. Cook for 5 minutes to slightly reduce and thicken the sauce.
  11. Meanwhile, slice the steak across grain into slices that are 1/4″-thick and about 2″ long. Stir meat and any accumulated juices into sauce. Cook for 2 minutes to warm the beef through. Remove pan from the burner and let cool (the bubbles will subside), then add 1/2-cup sour cream and an additional 1 tablespoon of white wine. Stir until you obtain a uniform color and adjust salt and pepper to taste.
  12. Serve over buttered egg noodles and sprinkle with chopped parsley.

3 Responses to Beef Stroganoff

  1. horndog says:

    I did this recipe yesterday. But… I used a one pound sirloin cut in small chunks and 1 lbs of prime ground beef 80/20…browned together heavily. Then cremini mushrooms and shataki mishrroms…alot. Worked out great.. the ground prime provide a lot of structure to the sauce…

    • Hi, Actually I just made this recipe again last week. Again, for the same reason that I had 3 pounds of beef tenderloin trimmings. It turned out great, but this last time I’d only rate it 4-stars. I don’t think I made any mistakes, but I was in a bit of a rush. I guess you get out of it based upon the effort you put in.

      Mark

  2. Anonymous says:

    Yup. It’s good

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