When I was writing the post for Rice Goulash, my mind wandered back to more of the kids’ favorite dishes when they were growing up. Beef goulash, made using ground beef with a mushroom soup gravy had to be served with egg noodles. There were rarely any leftovers on beef stroganoff nights! I looked for an actual recipe online and found one at Betty Crocker and was ready to cook!
Oddly enough I don’t buy egg noodles anymore. We eat plenty of pasta but don’t wander back to basic egg noodles. I had to have my P.S. (Personal Shopper/ hubby) pick up a bag of noodles. I already had the rest of the ingredients, including a pound of sliced baby bella mushrooms.
I chopped up a medium onion and added it to a large skillet I’d heated to medium high with a drizzle of oil. I added two stalks of celery I’d also chopped and let them sauté for several minutes, until they were softened and translucent. I added the sliced mushrooms and let them brown and almost caramelize.
I added 2 cloves of minced garlic and a tablespoon of Worcestershire to the mushroom mixture and stirred. I reduced the heat to low and let it simmer while the meat and noodles cooked.
In a second skillet I let the beef fry for 4-5 minutes without touching it to establish a nice brown crust on the bottom. When it was browned I used my handy meat tool and broke the beef up into small pieces. When they had cooked through I added the beef to the larger skillet.
I added 5 tablespoons of butter to the skillet and let it melt. I added 5 tablespoons of flour and stirred well then let the flour cook for several minutes to cook out the raw flour flavor.
I poured 2 cups of beef stock over the pan. I stirred until the mixture began to thicken. Next a cup of heavy cream went into the skillet and I stirred until the mixture had thickened again. I taste tested the stroganoff and added about 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper and a good pinch of salt to taste.
I turned the heat under the stroganoff down to medium low and let it simmer while I finished cooking the egg noodles in a pot of salted water. When the noodles were al dente I drained them, reserving about 2 cups of pasta liquid.
I added the sauce to the pot of drained noodles and stirred well. I let the noodles absorb some of the liquid. I added some of the pasta water when it looked like it was a bit too dry.
One last taste test and dinner was served. It was comfort food at its finest! The mushrooms added so much more flavor than a simple can of mushroom soup. The butter and cream made every mouthful rich and smooth.
The dish was a welcome flashback to family dinners when the kids still lived at home. My kids were good eaters and would eat almost anything I made. I was still learning to cook back then and they were good sports.
But the kids and I were always up for a good ground beef dish and mushrooms were a bonus when we had them on hand. I’ve rarely had steak on hand unless we’re going to grill but ground beef is always in the freezer, ready for thawing. Like the Shepherd’s Pie I take creative license with, I also tweak the traditional Beef Stroganoff.
Mushroom and Ground Beef Stroganoff
1 medium onion; diced
drizzle of oil
2 stalks celery; finely chopped
16 ounces baby bella mushrooms; sliced (originally called for 8 ounces; I liked more)
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon Worcestershire (originally this was 1 teaspoon; I liked more)
1# ground beef (or beef sirloin cut until 1/2″ pieces)
5 tablespoons butter
5 tablespoons flour
2 cups beef broth
1 1/2 cups heavy cream (originally called for sour cream)
16 ounce package egg noodles
salt and pepper to taste
Sauté onion in a large nonstick skillet heated on medium high with a drizzle of oil. Add celery and continue to cook until vegetables are almost translucent. Add mushrooms and cook 6-7 more minutes until the mushrooms are golden brown, almost caramelized. Stir in garlic, Worcestershire and butter.
In a separate skillet fry the ground beef on one side until very brown. Break up beef into smaller pieces and cook until the meat is no longer pink.
In the skillet with mushrooms, add flour and stir well. Cook for several minutes to cook the raw flour flavor out. Add beef broth and stir until the flour has been distributed and the mixture begins to thicken. Add the beef and stir well.
Stir in cream or sour cream and let cook for several minutes, stirring occasionally, until thickened. Taste test for seasoning, adding salt and pepper as desired.
In a separate large kettle cook egg noodles in salted water until al dente. Drain and add sauce to the kettle. Stir well and serve.
Adapted from Betty Crocker