Tuesday, November 27, 2012

My new favorite beef stroganoff

This is a recipe transformed.  I will warn you that it takes a bit of time in the oven, but it is worth it.  I cooked the meat the night before so that I had plenty of time to let it bake without rushing it because I was so hungry for dinner.
The finished plate

To Plate:
 - Make your mashed potatoes (keep them lumpy), make them like a volcano - you will fill the stroganoff inside the volcano. Add a sprig of parsley and cracked black pepper on top.

To make the stroganoff:
-Buy cubed chuck roast. This is a cheap cut of meat because it is tough if you don't cook it for a long time with moisture.

-Heat together oil & butter (oil for heat resistance, butter for flavor, 2:1 ratio)
-Pat the meat dry with kitchen towels and season with salt/pepper
-Pan sear until you get a nice color.
-Place in a baking pan which has a lid (you'll bake it covered and is very important to keep the moisture inside the pan)
-After removing the meat from the frying pan, use the juices to saute 16oz of sliced portabella mushrooms. Add to meat (add small amount of butter if more liquid is needed). Repeat for 2 large shallots, finely sliced add to meat/mushrooms.
-To the remains in pan, add 1 cup beef broth, 1 T. dijon mustard, 1 T. worchester sauce, 3 T cooking sherry, salt, pepper, and 1 can (undiluted) cream of mushroom soup. Stir and bring to a boil.  Pour over the meat. Put the lid on and place in the over for 2 1/2 hours at 300F.  The meat should be very tender, almost flaky when you cut into it.

I made my meat the day before and left it in the refrigerator overnight and then re-heated to serve. The sauce has a nice rich consistency and creaminess from the mushroom soup and the mushrooms and shallots add depth of flavor and the mushroom really shines through.

The beginning

This is not the beginning.  If you really want to get to the very beginning, you will have to go back to my first memory of baking, with my mom, at age 3.  I remember she let us pull the kitchen chairs up to the counter where she was doing something, anything, and let us help.  That day happened to be pie and with pies come scraps of dough that are perfect for little girls to get their hands full of flour.

But, today is not that day. I have had many more days in between with experiments in recipe following, 4-H fair baking, bakery decorating, food science and engineering testing at Purdue, and tinkering at my day job.  But the fun begins after the 5pm bell blows and I get to come home and create in my kitchen.

I love to cook for others and I want to practice the art of gourmet cooking techniques, especially plating and creating my own ingredients. I wanted a place to share that with others and that is the purpose of my blog. I want you to join me on this experiment as I make good, interesting, not-so-good, and re-purposed food that will hopefully excite and inspire.

Happy cooking,