I had the day off work today, so spent some time in the kitchen, making 6 portions of veggie chilli and 4 portions of mushroom stroganoff, half of which we had tonight with sautéed potatoes and green veggies. I’ll write about the chilli when we eat the first batch later on in the week (the rest will be frozen, along with the other half of the stroganoff).
As a side note – mushroom stroganoff isn’t a particularly healthy meal, as you’ll discover when you start making it and have to add drizzle after drizzle of oil to keep the pan greased. I actually made it as a treat though, since we both like it and it’s Mr Chilli & I’s five-year anniversary tonight. This might be the last time we celebrate the anniversary of when we started going out, as we’ll be married by our anniversary next year and will have a new one!
In spite of it being a bit of a ‘treaty’ meal, I wanted to see if I could make it a bit cheaper than usual. The recipe actually calls for Madeira (a sweet fortified wine), which is delicious if you have it. I didn’t have any left, though, as we finished the bottle last time we made stroganoff, and as I didn’t want to spend £12 on a bottle, I decided to use some Cava leftover from a party instead (yes I know, but it was opened a couple of weeks so was totally unfit to drink). You could also use normal white wine or even flat, leftover cider, but I do think the recipe needs some sort of alcohol in it. I also usually make it with a mix of button, chestnut and chopped up portobello mushrooms, but this time I tried it with cheapy value mushrooms and have to say it’s still pretty good.
Mushroom Stroganoff (serves 4)
- 750g mushrooms (any kind works, it can be nice to have a mix), wiped clean and halved or quartered
- 2 onions, sliced into half rings
- 1/2 pint alcohol (Madeira is traditional; white wine, sherry or cider will work too)
- 200ml crème fraîche
- a couple of dashes nutmeg
- 1 heaped tsp whole grain mustard
- 15-20g dried porcini or mixed mushrooms
- butter and olive oil, to fry
- 1 tsp sugar (optional; not necessary when using Madeira)
Heat the wine or cider in a small saucepan until nearly boiling, add the dried mushrooms and turn the heat off. Leave to rehydrate.
Meanwhile, heat a small pat of butter and a dash of olive oil in a large high sided frying pan, then add the onions and fry until soft and a little browned on some edges. Remove from the pan, add a little more oil and butter, then add half the mushrooms and keep frying until soft and browned. You’ll find you need to keep adding more oil as the pan dries out.
Remove the first batch from the pan, top up the butter and oil, and fry like the first batch. Use a slotted spoon to lift the dried mushrooms out of the alcohol and slice. Add back in all the mushrooms and onions to the frying pan, along with the sliced dried mushrooms, cider, nutmeg and alcohol. If you use a dry white wine or cider instead of the sweeter Madeira, you’ll get better results by adding a teaspoon or so of sugar at this point.
Let the mixture bubble away at a medium-low heat for around 20 minutes, until the mushrooms are all tender. Take off the heat, add in the crème fraîche and stir until combined. Serve with rice (or potatoes, as I did tonight) and salad or green vegetables.
No spends to report today!