Beef Stroganoff, Take 1

Or, as I am semi-affectionately referring to this first attempt, Beef Frankenstein.

Beef Stroganoff 092215

In the end, the flavor turned out to be quite good. The texture and execution need a little work!

I started by browning ground beef in my trusty iron skillet. So far so good. Next I would normally drain the fat, but decided against that this time, as we are trying to increase our fat, not decrease it: Mistake #1.

Then I added 1 1/2 cups of beef stock: Mistake #2. That made for WAY too much liquid. I simmered it for 15 minutes or so, but it didn’t reduce much in such a short period of time, of course. Fingers crossed, I turned off the heat and stirred in some sour cream, hoping it would thicken the liquid sufficiently: Mistake #3. Still way too much liquid — it didn’t look like anything I wanted to serve (or eat myself, for that matter!)

I called my husband over to ask for his advice, since he cooks professionally. As he ruefully commented, it’s kind of hard being asked how to fix something after the fact, when I had already totally muffed it! He kindly gave me his best guidance, though, and I dutifully spooned the beef out of the pan and discarded the bulk of the liquid. Then I turned the burner back on and added just a bit more beef base, stirring well to fully incorporate it with the meat. When I was satisfied of that, I once again turned the heat off and stirred in a bit more sour cream.

The end result still didn’t look very appealing to me, but we were both quite hungry by this point, so I dutifully served it. In the end it actually tasted pretty good and was moister than it appeared to be just looking at it. I’d like it to be a bit saucier and creamier, so next time I’ll drain it first and be careful with how much stock I add.

Hopefully next time I’ll share as an actual recipe…meaning I got it right on the second try!

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