Monday, February 25, 2013

Leave it to Stroganoff

Beef Stroganoff

          When I think of some of my favorite meals growing up, Beef Stroganoff always comes to mind.  It's the type of meal that was made famous for being that quintessential old school housewife meal that waited on the table when dad came home from work.  Something June Cleaver would have made. Russian based and made popular in the 50's and 60's, this dish just reminds me of family.  According to reports, the original dish contained tomatoes, however this version my mother has been making since before I was even born.  I think she got it out of a cookbook of sorts, however has changed it a bit here and there.  Most people serve Stroganoff over rice, however in our family we always had it served over fresh homemade pasta.  Any excuse to eat more pasta. The tastes of this dish go very well together.  The creamy beef sauce with the tang of sour cream and kick of a nice hearty red wine.  The tender strips of beef and noodle all blend well together.  Earthy mushrooms and onions add the perfect amount of flavor. 


  • Nice cut of Sirloin or chuck roast, cut into strips
  • 1 cup of button mushrooms sliced
  • 1/2 large sweet white onion diced
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 cup beef stock/broth
  • 8oz sour cream
  • 1/2 cup nice red wine
  • browning sauce
  • 2 tbs of flour
  • salt and pepper

      In a large skillet saute mushrooms and diced onion in 2 tbs of butter over medium high heat until onions are soft and translucent. Remove from skillet and sat aside.  Toss strips of beef in a bit of flour.  In 2tbs of butter saute the beef until brown.  Stir in the beef stock and simmer on low for about 30-45 minutes until beef is tender.  Pour in the wine and simmer until it reduces.  Stir in the sour cream and the onions and mushrooms.  Add a couple dashes of browning sauce until your mixture is a nice brown color.  Serve over fresh pasta or rice.   Salt and pepper to taste.  Enjoy!!!!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Shrimp, garlic, and gnocchi, YUM!!

Gnocchi and Shrimp
For my first post in recipes to share, I have decided to start with this shrimp in a white wine garlic butter sauce over gnocchi.  I feel privileged to have grown up in an Italian household.  Being half Italian, (on my mothers side), made for some wonderful and interesting dishes being made in our kitchen.  Watching and learning to cook some of the most tastiest and surprisingly easiest recipes here are.  Growing up one of my favorite pasta dishes was that of homemade gnocchi.  Gnocchi, (pronounced similar to “nockey” with a different “n” sound), technically is not a pasta per say.  They are little potato dumplings made from fresh boiled potatoes, flour, and some egg.  Today I will not be going into detail about how to make these delicious bites because of a secret recipe, however I possibly will give it out at a later date.  Today, we are going to concentrate on the shrimp and sauce dish that I paired with the gnocchi.
                The shrimp with white wine garlic butter sauce is very simple and delicious.  Many of you have probably ordered a similar dish in restaurants.  It is typically listed as Scampi.  Scampi in traditional senses is a type of shellfish like lobster.  The term has been used to described any dish prepared using the garlic butter sauce that the scampi has been cooked in.  To make this dish you will need the following ingredients:
  • ½ lb shrimp
  • 4 tbs of oil
  • 4 tbs of butter
  • ½ -1tbs of garlic, (typically 2 large cloves minced. Depending on how much you like)
  • 1 tbs of lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup of white wine
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • Parsley
  • Salt and pepper
  • Gnocchi
                Cook the gnocchi or pasta of choice according to directions.  Drain and set aside.  I typically cook the pasta right before the sauce is finished as it does not take that long.  IN a large skillet melt butter and oil together over medium high heat.  Once melted turn down heat slightly so as to not burn the next ingredients.  Toss in garlic, red pepper flakes, and shrimp.  Cook shrimp on first side for a couple minutes until pink and flip.  Pour in white wine and lemon juice.  Cover and simmer for a couple minutes until the flavors have mixed and the sauce has reduced and thickened.  Toss with gnocchi and sprinkle with some parsley.  Salt and pepper to your own tastes.  See, quick and very simple.  Trust me, you will love this dish.  Hope you all enjoy.  Please share and leave some comments.   Buon Appetito!!