Once a month, I go to Tortola – the big island, to do my big grocery shopping. Tortola is the largest island and the capital of the BVIs. A 30-minute ferry ride from Virgin Gorda, it has supermarkets, department stores, cheese shops, etc., mostly things we do not have here on our small island. For me, going to Tortola means stocking up on meat, cheese, and herbs. Riteway, the closest we have to a real supermarket in the British Virgin Islands, offers different selections of unfrozen, freshly cut meat, and a variety of fresh herbs.
Though lately I have been cooking more vegetarian dishes, after my last visit to Riteway and finding sirloin steak tips, I decided to make an exception and cook this French Classic, Beef Stroganoff for us.
To me, this dish is the definition of comfort food. You may think now, this is so not a summer dish, but if you are living on a Caribbean island that is always summer, like we do, it makes no difference. And sometimes all I want is a classic made with easy-to-follow steps and a guaranteed delicious end result.
The original classic recipe for Beef Stroganoff is usually made with a rather expensive cut of beef, the tenderloin cut. However, this version is made with a fairly inexpensive cut, the sirloin steak tips. The only ingredient that you may not have is the brandy. I didn’t have it either. I googled for a substitute and luckily bourbon was an option, which I had in my liquor cabinet. I humbly recommend not skipping on the alcohol, mainly because I think it makes a huge difference.
As an added bonus, this is one of those dishes that tastes better the next day. So if you are planning to serve it as one of the dishes for a family dinner party, feel free to make it a day in advance. Although this recipe serves 4 big portions, you can always double the recipe if you want to serve it to a crowd.
Skillet Beef Stroganoff
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 45 minutes
- Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
- Yield: 4
- 1 1/2 lbs. sirloin steak tips
- 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 10 ounces white button mushrooms, cleaned and sliced thinly
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 cups chicken broth, low sodium or homemade
- 1 1/2 cups beef broth, low sodium
- 1/3 cup brandy or bourbon
- 3 cups wide egg noodles
- 2/3 cup sour cream
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice, freshly squeezed
- 2 tablespoons fresh thyme, chopped
- salt and pepper
- Place the sirloin steak in between to sheets of plastic wrap. Pound it with a meat pounder until it is an even 1/2 inch thickness. First, cut it into 2-inch strips towards the grain, and then cut each strip into 1/2-inch strips against the grain. Pat-dry the meat using paper towels. Season the meat with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
- Heat 1-tablespoon oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Cook half of the meat, 4-5 minutes on each side. When cooked, place it in a bowl. Repeat the same process for the other half. Cover it with aluminum foil and set aside.
- Once the meat is cooked, in the same skillet, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons oil. Add onion, mushroom, and 1/2 teaspoon salt, and cook, stirring frequently, until the juices of the mushrooms evaporate, 8-10 minutes.
- Add flour and cook, stirring constantly, for a minute.
- Stir in the broths and then brandy. Scrape the bottom of the pan; making sure that all the bits and pieces of the meat is mixed in the liquid.
- Return the beef into the mixture. Put the lid on and let it cook over low heat until beef is tender, for 30 minutes.
- Stir in the noodles, cover, and cook, stirring occasionally until noodles are cooked, 10 -12 minutes.
- Off the heat, add the sour cream and lemon juice. Give it a big stir.
- When ready to serve, garnish it with chopped thyme.
Recipe adapted from America’s Test Kitchen.