05 November 2006

Beef Stroganoff, my way.

My plans for a great Sunday were almost thrown to nought when I realised that I had bought the wrong ingredient for a recipe I have earmarked to try for a while now. Instead of getting thick, juicy tenderloins (1.5 inches thick) for a thick-cut pan seared steak recipe, I ended up with two pieces of rib-eye steaks just 1 inch thick.

Instead of letting this small setback ruin my perfect weekend (thus far at least), I scoured through the few cookbooks I have for a recipe that involved rib-eye steaks. That's when I chanced upon a Beef Stroganoff recipe by Marcus Wareing, from The Cook's Book.

While Beef Stroganoff has been widely associated with a 19th Century Russian noble, Count Pavel Stroganoff, evidence of other similar recipes have been found to exist since the 18th Century. It may be true that the Count's near celebrity status as a gourmand and his love for entertaining popularised the dish, however the exact origin of the dish is still indeterminate.

The main components of a traditional Beef Stroganoff are strips of beef, mushrooms, onions and sour cream. Commonly served with noodles or rice, there are international variations of the dish which include anything from tomato sauce to mustard.

Today, I decided to give Beef Stroganoff a little twist by using coconut cream instead of sour cream, adding some tomato puree, and just a portion of thinly sliced red pepper. Not a big fan of sour cream myself, I was more than willing to substitute it with something as familiar and embracing to my palate as coconut cream. As the strips of rib-eye were sauteed over high heat for just a few minutes, they remained tender, moist and flavourful. The dish was utterly rich and comforting because of the coconut cream while the puree added a twangy sweetness that brought another refreshing dimension to the overall flavour of the dish.

A total cinch to make, Beef Stroganoff will be a dish I will definitely make again. Perhaps when I have guests over, considering how easy it is to prepare. If served atop some stained-glass ravioli, they can turn into something not just decadently soothing but also elegant.

The only time consuming part of the whole process would be the slicing of the onions and beef. But with my new, ultra sharp made-in-Japan knife, the time involved was effortlessly fractioned. Now that I have tried a good, solid chef knife, it is truly difficult to move back to mediocre and easily blunt knives. But without a proper knife holder (just waiting to be put up) in place in my kitchen, I have to ridiculously keep the knives in the drawers in their original packaging for fear of damaging their blades. But I digress.

The whole dish took me just about 20 minutes to prepare from the slicing to the washing up. I imagine that this would be a great dish to prepare after work since it requires only a few ingredients and minimal effort. For guys who are planning a surprise loving-home-cooked dinner for their girlfriends, this is quite a friendly recipe to work with as well.

Beef Stroganoff (Daffy's way)
Serves 3 with rice/potatoes/noodles

1 tbspn olive oil
3 tbspn butter
1 big white onions, thinly sliced
1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1/2 cup packed porcini mushrooms (soaked in water until soft)
500g rib eye steak, cut into strips 1x3 inches
150ml coconut cream
4 tbspn tomato puree
1 tbspn sugar
salt and freshly ground black pepper
spring onions (optional)

Heat oil and half the butter over medium high heat and fry onions and red bell peppers until onions turn translucent and peppers soften.
Add mushrooms and fry for 2-3 minutes.
Remove onions, peppers and mushroms from pan with a slotted spoon.

Add remaining butter to pan and heat until beginning to foam.
Add steak and saute quickly over high heat for 3 minutes until browned on all sides.
Return onion mixture to pan and stir to mix with meat.

Add coconut cream, tomato puree and sugar, stirring until well combined.
Season with salt and pepper.
Garnish with sliced spring onions before serving.


addy said...

coconut cream is a nice twist!

Anonymous said...

:) it does however take away much of its original character, which is something I worry about constantly when I tweak something. I tend to play too much with my food! heh.

fe li ci a said...

how's gig? do tell!

maryeats said...

I find that I often substitute coconut milk for other diary products quite often, sometimes without even thinking. So far my favorite is to use it in creamed spinach. Yum. I wonder if anyone has tried using it in hot chocolate.

Anonymous said...

Fel> it was so fun! go youtube and find for acoustifish. the songs are all uploaded there =)

Maryeats>I've never heard of that combination either, why don't you try and let us all know? =)

Blogger said...

3 Researches REVEAL How Coconut Oil Kills Belly Fat.

This means that you literally kill fat by consuming Coconut Fats (including coconut milk, coconut cream and coconut oil).

These 3 studies from large medical magazines are sure to turn the traditional nutrition world around!