06 February 2010
dairy free egg free nut free
Do we look down on Beef Stroganoff? Maybe if it wasn't synonymous with packet mixes and food court bain maries, some of us might be more inclined to recreate this 19th century Russian dish. It may not be in vogue, but when you are allergic to dairy, the desire for 'creamy' dishes can verge on the obsessive.
To make this super delicious, ensure you flour and paprika the beef pieces well and sear them in a very hot frying pan for about 15 seconds each side and set aside. They should still be pink inside when you take them out - so given they are sliced thinly, they do only need about 15 seconds. If that!
For the sour cream, you can experiment with two versions - one using Tofutti sour cream which is very tasty and I don't think anyone eating it would know you were using a soy-based substitute. If however you want the less processed version (we try to eat Tofutti sparingly), you can substitute with coconut cream. You will however need to add a bit of tang or saltiness via a couple of tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce or soy sauce or even Thai fish sauce. Don't worry, it won't end up tasting like any of those things.
(Another option might be to add 1 tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice to one cup of coconut cream. I read somewhere recently that this is how you would make your own buttermilk - which is a sour version of regular milk and used in baking - but it might have the same effect. If anyone is game to try it, please let me know!)
This recipe was originally adapted from Delicious magazine. Some versions do include tomato paste and the traditional way to eat Stroganoff is with dill pickles and boiled potatoes. I went the Westernised version (rice) so as not to scare anyone off.
600g fillet steak, thinly sliced
3 tbsp flour, seasoned with salt and pepper
1 tbsp paprika (to be honest, I went a little heavy handed on the paprika and I think it is the better for it - go 2 tbsps!)
2 1/2 tbsps olive oil
1 large onion, finely sliced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
2 tsp chopped thyme
250g button mushrooms, sliced (or about 4-5 large field mushrooms)
1/4 cup brandy or dry sherry (optional)
300ml coconut milk
1-2 tbsp fish sauce
Toss meat in a bowl with flour and paprika to coat. Heat oil in a large frypan over high heat and fry steak quickly in batches for 1 minute or until seared on all sides. Remove and set aside. (This part is really important, especially if you have gone to the effort of buying fillet steak - you do not want chewy meat!)
Reduce heat to medium high, add a bit more oil and onion and cook for a minute until the onion starts to soften and colour. Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds, then thyme and mushrooms and cook for 2 minutes. Add brandy and allow to bubble for a further minute (optional). Stir in coconut milk and fish sauce and allow to simmer for 10 or so minutes. Add steak and any meat juices, simmer on low for a further minute.
Serve with rice.