Went a bit mad buying weekday lunch ingredients in the supermarket last week. Cooked pounds of chicken thigh, pounds of carrots, and pounds of ham and beans, leaving behind half a cow in the fridge. The critical question today was not whether I could get the RO1 edited in time, nor whether I’d remember to submit the internal mini grant, but: What to do with 2 lbs of beef that’s been in the fridge for 4 days and getting a wee bit oxidised?
Eh. Beef Stroganoff / Stroganov. Enough to feed a bleeding army.
- 1.5 – 2 lb beef. I think the cut was round top. No doubt Stroganoff puritans are turning in their graves.
- Crap loads of muchrooms. Equivalent to 3 times the volume of beef, weight undetermined.
- 1 mega onion with a green shoot growing out the top. I think that makes it better, no?
- Flour. Lots of flour. And then another few tablespoons.
- Butter. A few tablespoons.
- Mustard powder, Colemans will do.
- Nutmeg. Do I hear more Stroganoffians turning in said graves?
- Stock of some sort. Had fresh ham stock, but decided on the milder chicken bouillon instead. About 2 cups.
- Milk. About 1 cup.
- Sliced the crap loads of mushrooms and chopped onions. Ended up with 2 heaped dinner plates of muchrooms¹. Kept onions separate, natch.
- Sliced beef with a little more care. Mainly sliced along the grain, and then into thinner strips also along the grain. Went a bit gaga towards the end and sliced against the grain. Bloody obvious which slices those were when we finally ate.
- As was slicing beef, threw slices into gigantic dish with flour liberally sprinkled with mustard powder and grated nutmeg. Only a pinch of nutmeg, mind. Bloody loads of mustard powder though. About 3 tsp in ~half a cup of flour. Could have done with more.
- Heated up buckets of oil in large saute pan. Maybe not buckets, but enough to half-submerge the thinnish beef slices. Prob half an inch high.
- Over medium-high gas, fried the beef in small batches. SMALL BATCHES CRITICAL. Yes. Well. But took bloody ages, dinnit? Got bored, didn’t I? Fried the last batch crowded. Came out more blah. Very important to note here that I like my beef fried hard and fast. Otherwise the inside turns to stone. Like being stared at by Medussa.
- Set fried beef aside. Worked on onion next. In direct contrast to the way I like to cook beef, I sauteed the onions gently. They were babied.
- Set onions aside too. Got to work on the mushrooms. Filled surface of pan with mushrooms. Wondered what to do with the other bloody ton. As mushrooms shrank, added more, and more, and more, and more… Note to self: use all 4 burners next time and we’ll eat before midnight.
- Gave up on idea of using saute pan. Got soup pot out and unceremoniously dumped the fried onions, mushrooms and beef in there. But rinsed out pan with some stock first to get the lovely juices out.
- Made roux in separate pan. 3 tbsp butter, melted. 3 tbsp flour, whisked in. 1 cup milk, whisked in. And from there I sort of lost count of liquid that went it. It could have been 1 cup of stock or 2. My brain was truly starved of glucose by then.
- Dumped sloppy roux over beef, mushrooms and onions. It could have been prettier.
- Realized that I had to be a little more gentle, or the entire dinner-for-an-army could end up splattered all over the kitchen walls. Turned heat to v v low. Like less than simmer low.
- Splooshed some cream on. The whole point of this exercise was to get rid of stuff in the fridge. There was the half-a-cow. Done. There was the entire field of mushrooms. Gone. And then, there was this half pint of cream that we’ve been trying really really hard to get rid of. The surplus from a Christmas chocolate mousse. It’s gone in our tea, coffee, and even in Milo. At least we didn’t have it with our breakfast cereal². And still there’s more. It’s the never-ending half pint of cream. Anyway, it’s gone now.
- Served up over some gohan. Because we’re Fobby like that.
- Went a bit gaga and posted heinous, sacrilegious fake Beef Stroganoff recipe on blog.
- Gave up and had Milo. With cream³.
¹ Intended. Sorry.
² Someone I knew used to have Crunchy Nut Cornflakes with single cream. Wonder if he’s still alive.
³ There’s another unopened half pint still in the fridge. Best by the 15th. In need of way to use it up without leading to immediate arterial blockage.