Saturday, September 15, 2007

A meal fit for a Tsar!

That is what the girls fixed for us last night.

Beef Stroganoff in fact.

So elegant, so tasty... such an old dish...

It turns out that beef braised in sour cream has been a classic part of Russian cuisine since the medieval period. Often the classic dish was flavored with mustard but did not include onions or mushrooms.

In fact, it was not until the fall of Imperial Russia that the dish became popular. It was brought to the U.S. by Russian and Chinese immigrants (where it was a very popular dish) and was served over rice or noodles.

The name Stroganoff is also something of a mystery. We know that Russian dishes are commonly named for the household that the chef worked in rather than the chef himself... So as nearly as we can tell Beef Stroganoff is named after the prominent Russian family.

For my girls, this was one of the first dishes that they learned to make. It gave them pride to be able to tell people that they could make something that sounds so impressive and elegant.

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