Beef Stroganoff, or beef Stroganov, is a Russian dish of thinly sliced tender meat cooked in a rich sauce with sultanas. It is thought to have been first created in the late 19th century by Count Alexander Borovskoy, and from its roots in early Russia, it's become very popular around the globe. The word "strey" means sweet in Russian, and "gonos" means red. Although there are disagreements among some cooking scholars over exactly where the two terms came from, one thing is agreed on: babushka (red) and strey (sweet).
The most traditional form of Estrogonofe is prepared as beef stroganoff. The classic recipe consists of boneless, skinless beef that is cut into thin strips. The cuts are then marinated overnight in liquid such as rosewater and vinegar, which will bring out its natural juices, and the next day is cooked in thick butter or stock. After the meat has rested, it is sliced into thin strips and simmered in a mixture of butter and fresh onion, which will prevent the formation of bacteria. When cooked, Estrogonofe will take on a slight pink colour, and will usually be crisp and salty rather than sweet. The flavours of the dried onion and the butter will enhance the natural sweetness of the meat.
This delicious dish is very popular in the south of Brazil, where it is often served as an accompaniment to other food, such as jalapeno peppers. There are variations to the recipe, however, and the most common version of beef stroganoff is Brazilian style. In this variation, onions and garlic are frequently added to the sauce, and the meat is traditionally simmered in red or green sauces, with ample amounts of the Estrogonofe fruit sitting at the centre. A thin slice of avocado placed on top completes this mouth-watering dish.
Estrogonofe is not only used in Brazil but is now being sought after all over the world. With more restaurants opening in cities from New York to Sydney, more people are clamouring for recipes of this amazing fruit. While the traditional recipe still exists, more modern versions have come to fill the void. As well as the American version of Brazil stroganoff, there are numerous versions from all over the world that are very popular, such as the one which can be found in the book "uvian stew with an umbrella" by Robin Sharp.
As well as being delicious on its own, Estrogonofe also makes an excellent addition to chicken or beef recipes, being especially good in chicken breasts and steak recipes. The meat from this exotic berry is very lean and is known to be relatively free of saturated fats. For those wanting to enjoy it in a healthier way than red meat, Estrogonofe is definitely the way to go.
One variation of Estrogonofe which is growing in popularity is the Brazilian steak and vegetable soup recipe, which is made using the tender meat and cooked in coconut or peanut oil. It makes a really healthy and flavorful alternative to beef stroganoff. A similar recipe, in coconut, uses tomatoes, onions, onion stems and bay leaves to add extra texture and depth to the soup. Both of these recipes use Estrogonofe instead of beef for the meat and make excellent substitutes for other meat-based recipes, including chicken, veal and salmon.
The traditional recipe uses shallots, garlic, salt and butter to make a roux, which is then blended with Rosemary and butter to make a deep flavoured paste. This roux can be used to cook vegetables, such as broccoli and carrots. A thicker consistency is required for frying chicken. It is not essential to use a high cooking temperature for frying chicken; you can cook it in a copper casserole dish with a little olive oil or butter over medium heat. When chicken is first cooked, its juices will seep through to the other ingredients, providing an interesting taste and texture to the final dish.
To make a really simple dish, substitute the onions and garlic with finely chopped roasted portobello mushrooms instead. Puree the mushroom puree in some olive oil and warm gently before adding the salt and butter. It is important to remember that Estrogonofe is high in antioxidants, so it is good for your health as well as your stomach!