Beef stroganoff is one of those dishes that my mom actually made really, really well. In fact, I'd go so far as to say it was my favorite dish growing up. It remains a family favoriite that even my culinarily challenged brother can whip together for his family!
The dish's history is dated back to the mid 19th century and, as you probably expected, is Russian in origin. However, after the fall of the Russian Empire, the dish was popularly served in hotels and restaurants in China before the start of the Second World War. Russian and Chinese immigrants, as well as US servicemen stationed in pre-communist China, brought several variations of this dish back to America. Beef stroganoff is also quite popular in Australia and the UK.
I have no idea where my mother got her version of the recipe but given the strong British presence in her home town when she was growing up, its likely that it was a dish she grew up having.
The original Russian version calls for cubed beef, browned and stewed in a mustard and boullion sauce, finished with a small amount of sour cream - no mushrooms, no onions, both of which are scrumptious additions in my opinion.
My mom's recipe called for full fat sour cream, full fat and sodium condensed cream of mushroom soup, canned mushrooms, and broad egg noodels. By using low fat greek yogurt, or in it's absence 0.5% milk mixed with lemon juice or vinegar, low fat/low sodium condensed cream of mushroom soup, fresh mushrooms and No Yolk egg noodles, I've reduced the calories by 35%, fat by a whopping 89%, and sodium by 43% without sacrificing any of the flavour.
This dish can easily be prepared in 30 minutes and it's absolutely fantastic as a leftover lunch. I like to make the sauce a few hours in advance and let it simmer, so that the flavours have time to marry, but sometimes, the time just isn't there.
Beef stroganoff is one of those things that I think of as 'comfort food'. It's easy to make, nutritional, delicious and for under $16 you can feed a family of 6. Beyond that, beef stroganoff is one of those dishes that only gets better the next day, making it perfect to pack for lunch. To check out my recipe, click on 'beef' in the recipe section from the navigation bar. If you've never tried beef stroganoff, I promise you won't be disappointed!