Monday, September 28, 2009

Got Beef?

I have recently become fond of mustard. I've always liked mustard, but with my developing pregnancy I've come to know mustard as my true love. Of all the things a girl could crave, at least mustard has a fairly low caloric and fat content.

This stroganoff reminds me of Chateaubriand as both require dijon mustard in the sauce - have no fear, the mustard in this stroganoff is not overwhelming and the whole family cheered at the final result.

First, you'll need some pasta. I chose farfalle because...well, I think it's cute and it's easy to stab with a fork - I know that reason does not involve a refined culinary point of view, but it will have to do. You'll also need beef tenderloin (or sirloin for the budget conscious), a large yellow onion, baby bella mushrooms, sour cream, beef broth, corn starch, dijon mustard, salt and pepper.

Okay, so the onion is not in the above picture...I have flaws...

Make the sauce first. Stir 1 teaspoon cornstarch into 1 cup hot broth, whisking to prevent lumps. When barely beginning to thicken stir in 1/2 cup sour cream and 2 Tbs. dijon mustard. If sauce overheats and becomes too thick, simply stir in additional broth or water.

Next, coat beef with 1 1/2 Tbs. kosher salt and 1 tsp. coarse black pepper. In a large pan, heat 2 Tbs. canola oil over high heat. Stir in your beef and cook until browned, but do not over cook - think medium/rare - your strips are thin and will cook quickly, so just about 2-3 minutes is all you'll need.

Remove meat from pan and set aside. Add an additional Tbs. canola oil to your pan, if needed, and throw in your onions. Cook until tender and brown. Someone got her thumb in the photo...remind me to fire her...

Add in the baby bella mushrooms and cover. Cook for 6-8 minutes until mushrooms are tender, stirring occasionally.

Return beef to your pan and stir in your broth/sour cream mixture. Combine well.

Serve over piping hot cooked pasta. Refrigerate leftovers and eat at midnight!

Beef Stroganoff

1 lb. beef tenderloin, thinly sliced into strips
3 Tbs. canola oil
1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
8 oz. baby bella mushrooms
1 cup beef broth (low-sodium if available)
2 Tbs. dijon mustard
1/2 cup sour cream
1 1/2 Tbs. kosher salt
1 tsp. coarse black pepper
1 Tbs. cornstarch

In a saucepan, heat beef broth and whisk in cornstarch. Heat until just beginning to thicken, then remove from heat and whisk in sour cream and mustard. Cover and set aside. Toss beef strips with kosher salt and pepper. Heat 2 Tbs. canola in large skillet. Add beef and saute until browned, 2-3 minutes. Remove beef from pan and set aside. Add an additional Tbs. canola oil to beef drippings and stir in onion, cooking until tender and brown. Stir in mushrooms, cover and continue cooking for 6-8 minutes until mushrooms are tender. Return beef to skillet and stir in sour cream sauce. Heat thoroughly and serve over piping hot pasta. Top with a dollop of sour cream. Enjoy!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Peach Cobbler, Baby!

The Music Man looovvees cobbler. On a recent trip to my home state of Ohio, he devoured some super yummy cobbler whipped up by my sweet cousin Liz. I thought this would satisfy his cobbler cravings, but it appears that it merely whetted his appetite for more. When his birthday approached he asked for cobbler instead of cake. Here's what we made...

Peach Cobbler

5 cups sliced fresh peaches* (about 6-8 peaches)
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 Tbs. cornstarch

3/4 c. all-purpose flour
3/4 c. whole wheat flour
4 Tbs. packed brown sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
6 Tbs. butter
1/2 cup half & half

Filling: Place sliced fresh peaches in a large sauce pan, barely cover with water and heat just to a simmer, cook for five minutes then remove from heat and let set another five minutes, barely softening the peaches. Drain peaches, reserving your liquid. Combine sugar and cornstarch with 1 cup of the reserved liquid. Place your sliced peaches in a shallow baking pan, cover with sugar mixture and set aside.

Topping: Finely dice or grate butter and place in the freezer to set. In the bowl of a food processor combine flours, sugar, baking powder and salt - pulse till well combined. Add grated butter and pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal (8-10 pulses). Transfer flour mixture to a large bowl and gently add the half and half, stirring until just combined. Spoon balls of mixture on top of the fruit. Bake 1 hour at 375 degrees. The topping should be golden brown and fruit should bubble.

*Live-It-Up Variation: can substitute 5 cups of fresh blueberries in place of peaches, adding the zest of 1/2 lemon and leaving all other ingredients the same.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Oh, Do You Know the Muffin Man?

We like muffins for breakfast...or at any time of day really. We also have a household obsession with fiber. Combine the two and the possibilities are endless! These Coconut Pecan Oat Bran Muffins were a big hit and at 3 grams of fiber per muffin, I could rest easy as my son devoured four of them. What can I say? He's growing and who could resist giving plenty to a boy who waited with so much anticipation...

I hope you enjoy them just as much we do!

Coconut Pecan Oat Bran Muffins

2 1/2 cups oat bran
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/4 cup shredded coconut*
1/4 cup chopped pecans
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
2 eggs
1 cup milk
2 Tbs. vegetable oil
Turbinado Sugar for topping

In a large bowl, combine oat bran, sugar, coconut, nuts, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, milk and oil. Pour wet ingredients into dry and mix until combined. Spoon into prepared muffin pan, sprinkle the tops with turbinado or demerara sugar and bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes. Makes 12 muffins.

*Live-It-Up Variation: can substitute 1/4 cup chopped apple, raisins, or banana in place of coconut.