Yesterday was the craziest, raniest day in California that I can remember for a good long while.  I don’t think it stopped raining at all until 5pm and everything was completely waterlogged.

As I looked out the window and stared at the gray sky and watched the rain drizzle down, all I could think was comfort food. I am a huge fan of comfort food so I rarely need an excuse to decide to make it.

I commented on the rainy weather to Amy, who came back right away with a bunch of suggestions to combat the gray day, among them beef burgundy and a provencal beef stew.  You can guess what main ingredient stuck in my head and I asked her about beef stroganoff, which she has always praised as delicious but which I’ve never made.  She directed me towards the Gourmet Cookbook version.

I was instantly sold when I skimmed the ingredients and realized all I was missing was beef, shallots and and egg noodles.  For once, I actually had fresh dill and mushrooms on hand and I knew – just knew – it was a sign that I was supposed to make this dish.

What’s crack-a-lackin’?  Is it sheer yumminess?

When I took my first bite, my first thought was: AH MAH ZING.  The minute I dug into this dish, I was in love.  It was just so perfect and tasty and delicious.  I can definitely see why Amy whole-heartedly recommends this recipe, and maybe licks her lips as she does so.  🙂

The only changes I would make for next time is to increase the amount of sauce by 50% … doubling it is probably too much but the sauce is delicious and you don’t want the pasta to be dry.  Also, I am almost too embarrassed to admit this, but the dish says it serves 6 and in actuality, there were 3 generous portions for us.  Apparently, a dill cream sauce served over tender beef and noodles will put you in some crazy food daze where you won’t realize how much you’ve eaten until you’ve eaten it.

Either that, or we’re total pigs.

Including the recipe, because a search of Epicurious did not lead to the particular recipe I used.

Beef Stroganoff
from The Gourmet Cookbook

3-1/2 tbsp. unsalted butter, separated
1 tbsp. all-purpose flour
1 cup beef broth
1 lb. beef tenderloin, trimmed, sliced 1/4″ thick and cut into 1″ pieces
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp. olive oil, separated
1/2 cup thinly sliced shallots
3/4 lb. cremini mushrooms, trimmed and halved, quartered if large
3 tbsp. sour cream, at room temperature
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
2 tbsp. chopped fresh dill
Buttered wide egg noodles

1-  Melt 1-1/2 tbsp. butter in a 1-quart heavy saucepan over moderate heat.  Whisk in flour and cook, whisking constantly, for 2 minutes to make a roux.  Add stock in a slow stream, whisking constantly, and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer, whisking occasionally, for 3 minutes.  Remove from heat and keep warm.

2-  Pat beef dry and season well with salt and pepper.  Heat 1 tbsp. butter and 1 tbsp. olive oil in a 12″ heavy skillet over moderately high heat until foam subsides.  Add beef and cook, turning once, approx. 1 minute per side.  Insides should still be slightly pink but outsides should be seared.  Remove with slotted spoon to ap late.

3-  Add 1 tbsp. butter and 1 tbsp. olive oil and heat until hot but not smoking.  Add shallots and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown.  Add mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until liquid mushrooms give off have evaporated and they are cooked through.

4-  Return meat to skillet and stir to combine, then transfer to serving bowl.

5-  Reheat sauce over low heat, then whisk in sour cream, mustard, dill, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.  Do not let boil!  Pour sauce over beef and noodles.

Serves 6 normal people or 3 portions for 1 hungry Swede and 1 hungry Asian