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Friday, February 18, 2011

Mama's Beef Stroganoff

When I think of beef stroganoff I think of my mom. She always made the best. Whenever she made roast I knew we would be having stroganoff with the leftovers and I always looked forward to it. Mom cooked roasts in her crock pot. She had an older crock pot that was rectangle and sat on a hot plate. It had a metal rack to put in it to keep the meat from touching the bottom. I think I still have that crock pot in one of my cabinets even though it's been retired for some time now. On roast day she would put the roast in the crock pot with a package of Lipton Onion Soup Mix and enough water to half cover the roast. That would cook all day and in the last few hours of cooking she would add peeled potatoes and carrots. We would eat roast with potatoes and carrots for a few days and then she would make stroganoff with the leftovers. She would take the crock pot out of the fridge and scrap off the hardened grease. She would then cut up the meat into smaller pieces and add more water if needed with beef bouillon cubes. Then she would put the crock pot right on the stove to heat up. She would bring it to a boil and then add a package of egg noodles. Once the egg noodles were cooked she would add a container of sour cream and that was that. It was always wonderful. Just saucy enough without being soupy and so flavorful. When I started making it, it just never tasted the same to me. Some things just taste better made by someone you love. I would either make it too dry or too soupy. But over the years I have gotten better but I miss the way mom would make it. I also have found over the years that I prefer making it with broken up spaghetti noodles but my hubby prefers the egg noodles. We are at a stand off. I usually make it the way I like it since I am the one cooking it. I don't make stroganoff very often because it's not really WW friendly. I suppose you could try making it lighter using fat free sour cream and wheat egg or spaghetti noodles but then it wouldn't be like mama's and I like the way mama made it. So I indulge from time to time. I know mama would approve.

Mama's Beef Stroganoff
from my mama

1-2 cups leftover roast cut up
6 to 8 cups liquid, you can use the juice from the roast and if that's not enough add water with beef bouillon for flavor
1 package egg noodles or package of broken up spaghetti
1 16oz container sour cream, light works really well and if you like fat free have at it but I don't

In a dutch oven or stock pot bring the roast and liquid to a boil. Add the noodles and cook according to the package directions or to the doneness you like. I have learned over the years that if a lot of liquid is left after cooking the noodles don't be afraid to drain some of the liquid off. To much liquid makes it to runny. Runny stroganoff is bad, unless you want it as a soup. I like it thicker. Add the sour cream and heat until heated through and slightly thickened. About 5 minutes.

Disclaimer: I thought adding mushrooms would be a good thing and it really wasn't. I love mushrooms but it didn't add anything to this dish. I guess you shouldn't mess with mama's recipe.

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