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Created in the early 19th century and named for Count Pavel Alexandrovich Stroganov, the last male scion of a rich and aristocratic Russian family for whom the creator, a French chef, worked, this dish became an international haute cuisine classic. The Franco-Russian treat combines the seared steak and Dijon mustard of French cuisine with the sour cream of Russia. And although the name of the Stroganov family’s chef is now lost, naming the creation for his patron was probably a wise career move. 

The alternate spelling “Stroganoff” (the original name is spelled in the Cyrillic, not Roman, alphabet) is used internationally for the dish. Some recipes use mushrooms and ketchup, others do not. But beef, onions, Dijon mustard and sour cream are essential. The other essential is that the strips of beef are fried quickly, part at a time, so they brown lightly, rather than stew. I use beef “flatiron” steak, but fancier cuts of tender lean beef can be used, up to and including tenderloin. 

The traditional accompaniment for the dish is “French” fried strips of potato. But rice and noodle dishes also go well. The recipe serves six. 

Get the recipe at Tim’s blog, Tim’s Special Recipes.

The Beef Stroganoff photographed on this page was made by Tim Dondero’s grandson August.

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