I was talking on my mom to the phone this evening when she offered to bring me some chicken soup. You may or may not recall, but I have a cold. A bad cold. A cold so bad abd miserable that it could very well be, well, a man cold. Can I please get someone to give ME a little bell, rub my head, and say "poor little bunny?" Please? hello? Hm.
Anyway, she offered to bring me some soup, but when I told her that I had just bought a ton of stuff to make beef stroganoff because I had to have some, she dissolved into laughter. Back in the day, one sweltering August night when my mom was 40 weeks pregnant with me, my due date actually, she woke up in the middle of the night and HAD TO HAVE BEEF STROGANOFF. And well, pregnant women have craved crazier things. So she got up, in the middle of the night, and started cooking. And cooked for hours.
An then she went into labor.
And she kept cooking. There was NO WAY she was going to go to the hospital without finishing that stroganoff. She didn't even tell my dad she had gone into labor, because if he knew he would, I don't know, take her to the hospital? Because she was having a baby? I guess she just really wanted that stroganoff.
I never knew about that story, but I guess the apple doesn't fall far from the tree: since I have been pregnant I have suddenly been hit with crazy beef stroganoff cravings, even though I haven't had it in years and years. In fact, the last time I had this dish I didn't even like it: It was heavy and starchy and flavorless. It was the epitome of heavy 1950's cooking, with big chunks of meat paired with heavy starches and fats. No veggies. No flavor. No complexity.
This recipe is different. It's an updated version of the old classic and it packs a lot of punch. In the old days you used a big chunk of cheap meat and braised it for hours to tenderize it, then you slathered it with sour cream and plopped it on top of some egg noodles. Here we use a more tender cut, but we use less meat and more mushrooms, and we sear it quickly. The sauce is really rich and complex. It's so good I almost want to forgo the meat altogether and make this vegetarian. And finally, I am serving it over whole grain brown rice noodles with broccoli. Gluten-free, and better for you!
Now let's just keep our fingers crossed that I don't go into labor the next time I make this!
Healthier GF Beef Stroganoff
Adapted from Bon Appétit
Serves 4 - 6
Cooking time: 30-40 minutes
Ok! You will need this stuff:
Ok! First, prep your ingredients. This dish cooks fast, and you will be very sorry if your onions are burning while you are quartering a lb. of mushrooms. So!
But I chickened out.