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Easy Beef Stroganoff

Serves 4

I love beef stroganoff and spent years trying to perfect my recipe. I wanted a little more flavor than I was getting. It finally occurred to me to caramelize the onions and it made all the difference in the world. Then I decided to add dried mushrooms that I ground into a powder for even more flavor. I am not sure how close this is to a traditional stroganoff. I did have an authentic Russian recipe but lost the cookbook years ago and have not been able to replace it. I remember that, according to that book, stroganoff is commonly served with fried straw potatoes. That would be very good. However, I always serve it with buttered noodles, as in the similar and related recipes links. If you prefer rice, that would work as well. I hope you will enjoy.

Ingredients

Coat a large fry pan with olive oil; heat until very hot. Add the beef strips, in batches if necessary so as not to crowd the pan, and brown very quickly. Remove with slotted spoon and place on plate. Add a little more olive oil, about 1 tablespoon, and the onions. Season lightly with salt and pepper and add the sugar. Cover and allow to brown over medium-high heat for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the sliced mushrooms, cover and continue to caramelize for another 10 to 12 minutes. The onions and mushrooms should be a rich brown, but not burned color when done. Return the meat to the pan; add the mustard and ground mushrooms. Sauté briefly to reheat and combine. Add the sherry and reduce slightly. Add the sour cream; stir well and cook just until hot. Serve over buttered noodles with parsley.

Notes: The ground dried mushrooms add extra flavor to this and many dishes. I always keep fresh mushrooms in my refrigerator, stored in a paper bag, just in case I need them for a recipe. If I do not get around to using them as soon as I should, they dry in the bag instead of spoiling and can be used for other recipes that call for dried.

Variations: Add about 2 teaspoons of tomato paste to the beef with the mustard for an even richer, slightly tomato taste. Chicken, veal, lamb or pork strips can be substituted for the beef.