Beef Stroganov

Beef Stroganov became a dish of a local cuisine long ago.

Necessary products:
  • flesh of beef — 300 g
  • onion — 3 heads
  • melted butter or margarine — 4 tablespoons
  • wheat flour — 1 teaspoon
  • sour cream — ½ of glass
  • the black ground pepper and salt to taste

Сooking method:

Slice the meat thinly along fibers 1 cm long, beat off them and dice across fibers 3 – 4 cm long. Cut onions in half rings and fry in a part of oil until it is almost ready. Dry flour without change of color, cool it a bit, mix with sour cream, add fried onions and cook for 5 minutes. Salt and pepper meat, fry on the remained oil until a ruddy crust appears, pour in the sour cream sauce and bring it to boiling.

When you serve it, lay out beef Stroganov on a plate, strew with chopped greens. And our dish is not only written down, but also ready. As a result we have a tasty, low-cost and not so difficult dish. Only the name stayed unclear. Plates became empty, and the riddle remained. I could not leave the problem unresolved, that is why I had to begin the search.

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There are several versions of origin of the dish:

The first version. Amuzing.

The count Grigory Aleksandrovich Stroganov had an adroit French cook, who knew that the count had big problems with teeth in his declining years, therefore he chopped meat in such small pieces and stewed it so carefully that the count was happy.

The second version.  Reasonless.

"Befstrogany" were made up by people of the North after stroganiny — the frozen meat which was scratched out by thin strips. The version was stated for"rending the air". What is the function of prefix "bef"? Why was the ending changed? How long had the Chukchi to suffer to receive "a ruddy crust"? It is not clear.

The third version.  Improbable. 

The count Stroganov organized balls, because he was a laic. During the evening when guests already came home, and when all delicious dishes were eaten, an important person arrived to the ball, whether it was a messenger from the tsar or an important grandee. There were no food. The tired, but smart cook, looked around the kitchen unjoyfully and saw only scraps of beef.

He mixed everything with sour cream, stewed and... everybody liked the dish: the guest and the owner and the cook... However, that poor content of products in the kitchen of Stroganov, who was the richest man and a patron of that time, astonished us in this version. We reject all these unfounded versions. Let's pry into the real history of the Ural industrialist and grandee.

Stroganovy is a noble, baronial and count family. The natives of Pomor peasants who grew rich. Grigory Aleksandrovich Stroganov was the last representative of the family, lived in Odessa for a long time, and he was elected as the honorary citizen. He was also the successor of the both branches of the family (count and baronial), and because of the wealth, he kept "an open table" in Odessa, according to the traditions of grandees. It meant that any educated or well- dressed person could come for lunch "from the street". It was the time when the dish, invented by the French cooks, which subsequently became folk and national. The dish got a hybrid Russian-French name, included the name of the great Ural patron, with help of authors from Odessa.

Beef Stroganov was made up for a catering system, for «open tables». The dish is shared easily for portions and does not need a separate souse or gravy. From the moment of creation of this dish 150 years have passed, during this time beef Stroganov became a culinary symbol of the Perm Region, as blini (Russian pancakes) or pelmeni. To this day this simple and surprisingly harmonious dish admires people with the taste in any corner of the world and includes a part of the traditions of Prikamye.

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