Better Beef Stroganoff
If you are like me, as much as you like Aunt Sue Ellen's or Granny Mae's recipe, even your own mother's version, sometimes you try to improve on it, do you not? There are several I love in our family, a favorite coming from my sister's Texan in-laws that uses ground beef and condensed soups; I make it often and it don't need improving. But, then there's another one that uses an expensive cut of meat that, well, no matter how you braise in, pound on it or flash pan sear it, it just comes out like a piece of walrus hide, not that I've had any mind you.
So my goal was to change up this recipe and make it eatable, sorry Auntie Ellen, I know how you liked this back in the fifties. Now I've done my homework, talked to a bunch of folks in the cooking business, researched
practicality of ingredients and test cooked the method a couple of times in preparing sirloin served for other meals. The technique works I tell ya, tender as can be and almost like eating the real deal, filet mignon which is the recipe's choice of meat. This recipe is a hodgepodge of many. Now, like Sue Ellen, my wallet says it is not practical to serve fillet at times and when I do, I am not about to cut it up. Besides, stroganoff should be for the working class and it should be tasty too having the same flavor enhanced character as that classic original Russian Stroganov contained in a velvety smooth sauce. This one did all that and I was right please. Enjoy!
Better Beef Stroganoff
1 1/2 pound sirloin roast, center cut, at least 1 1/2 inch thick
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 teaspoon Worcestershire
1 pound white button mushrooms, 1-inch diameter preferably
1 tablespoon dry yellow mustard
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon black pepper plus additional
1 large garlic pod, crushed
1 cup minced onion
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 1/2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1/2 cup white wine
1 -10.5 oz Campbell's cond. beef broth
1/4 beef broth can of water (or mushroom liquid)
1 1/2 tablespoons dry vermouth
3/4 cup sour cream
chopped parsley for garnish
It is very important to properly cut the sirloin roast for proper cooking. If it is a blade portion of meat, most likely it will have a thin strip of gristle running down the middle with the grain. This must be removed as well as any gray skin. Cut the roast with the grain lengthwise in half and cut each of these in half or thirds depending on length. Trim the ends if tapering occurs as I did. You want each piece to be about 2 inches in diameter and uniform in shape. Place in a oblong sided dish and sprinkle with the soy sauce and Worcestershire. Toss and massage each piece to coat well; this aids in tenderizing the meat which will yield mignon texture and flavor. Cover and refrigerate for an hour and remove about 30 minutes prior to cooking.
If you have time, simmer cleaned mushrooms on medium-low heat with a stock or water until rendered half in size, about 20 minutes, or as I do, microwave for about 5 minutes on high power covered with plastic wrap. Place in strainer to drain liquid reserving if desired. Set aside.
Make a paste in a small bowl by mixing the mustard, sugar, pepper and garlic. Set aside.
Remove beef from marinade and pat dry with paper towels and sprinkle pepper lightly over the pieces to enhance flavor.
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat until hot and add 1 - 2 tablespoons oil to coat bottom of pan. Add meat placing about half-inch apart and cook until brown on all sides reducing heat if needed, about 7 minutes. Internal temperature should be 125 degrees F. Remove at this time to a warm plate and set aside.
Add the mushrooms, onions and about 1/2-teaspoon salt to the skillet. Shake pan cooking over medium-high heat to brown mushrooms and create a nice fond on the bottom of the pan. Quickly stir in the tomato paste to mix and then the flour coating all of the mixture. Add the white wine, stock, mushroom liquid or water and bring to a simmer. Scrape the bottom of pan to release the fond. Reduce to medium-low and cook until sauce is thickened, about 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, slice the roast across the grain into quarter-inch pieces. The meat will be very red, raw looking but this is fine as it is going into the hot sauce to further cook. When all of the roast is sliced, add the meat and juices to the skillet and gently fold to combine. Cook for a few minutes until bubbly again and turn off the the heat. Mix in the vermouth gently incorporating well followed with the sour cream.
Serve over warm egg noodles with a sprinkle of parsley or dill.