Comfort food: Beef stroganoff

Got a request for my recipe for beef stroganoff, so I’m going to add a new category of comfort food. These are adapted from recipes my mother used, the food I grew up on and while some of it’s expensive to make, some of it’s not. It’s not fancy. The reason I don’t cook is that my mother made everything from scratch (even egg noodles) and so it wouldn’t occur to me to go get, say, a jar of Ragu for spaghetti sauce (and the one time I did I gagged). However, when I do cook, I cook from scratch.

I very rarely measure anything unless I’m baking, so you’ll have to adjust for your own tastes. I have tried this stroganoff with stew meat or cutting up a cheap steak (say, chuck), but I don’t like it that way, as the flavors don’t blend as well. Liberal use of pepper is the key to a good batch of stroganoff.

The measurements for this beef stroganoff are written per 1 pound of hamburger.

1 pound hamburger
1 diced medium yellow onion (Get one of these gizmos.)
minced garlic (I buy it in the jars, usually in produce section by the onions.)
salt to taste
coarse-ground black pepper to taste, maybe 2 tsp
parsley to taste, maybe 1 Tb of dried
1 to 2 4-ounce cans of mushroom stems and pieces, drained

Cook up the hamburger with all the above ingredients on medium high heat, enough to barely cook the meat and make the onions translucent. Stir well, and let it simmer for about 10 minutes to let the flavors settle in. Drain, put it back in the pan, and put it back on the stove.

Into the drained meat, stir in (very well):

1 can cream of chicken soup

Let that simmer on low for about 15 minutes. While that’s cooking, cook up:

egg noodles

Remove the stroganoff from the heat. Add:

8 oz sour cream

Stir it in well and let the whole thing sit for about 10 minutes. Drain your egg noodles and put them on a plate. Then top with the stroganoff mixture.

That’s it. Only takes me about 1/2 hour, no matter how much I make, and I make it in batches of about 5 pounds of hamburger. It never lasts long enough to be able to freeze any of it, but it is freezable.