13/06/2012

Turkey & Mushroom Stroganoff


Another Stroganoff ...

Stroganoff is a Russian dish of sautéed meat and soured cream, or smetana.

Popular worldwide, Stroganoff has grown to incorporate many combinations of tastes, flavours and textures, from the inclusion of vegetables, mushrooms, pasta or rice, served inside crepes, as a topping to baked potato and made with almost any cut of meat, even sausage.

I have a few mushrooms in need of using up, a good turkey breast, and we're going to serve it over paleo pasta!

Stroganoff is a quick dish for which preparation is the key ...

Slice an onion and get it softening in a little butter.

Slice up some mushrooms and get them softening in butter.

Slice up some turkey breast and set aside until you are ready to serve.

Peel some carrot into ribbons and shred some spring greens, both absolutely seasonal, and spring greens quite firm in texture this late into the season. Set aside until ready to serve.

Chop some parsley and set aside until ready to serve.

Stroganoff comes together quickly and is best served fresh ...

Once the mushrooms have softened, pour over some cream or soured cream, stir in the softened onions and add a couple of cloves of minced garlic. Turn the heat right down and allow the cream to warm through, take on a little colour and reduce ever so slightly.

Now for the overture ...

Boil the spring greens and just before all the water has evaporated off, drop in the carrots. Switch the heat off - we don't want to overcook these while we're preparing the remainder of the dish.

Toss the turkey slices in a fresh frying pan or skillet with some coconut oil or dripping - turkey is very lean meat and works very well indeed with neutral flavoured fats like coconut oil and dripping. Use the heat to seal quickly and then toss in the creamy mushrooms, adding in some freshly milled black pepper and the chopped parsley.

Drain the vegetable ribbons and assemble a mount on a plate.

Spoon the Stroganoff over the paleo pasta.

11 comments :

  1. Hi Paul (H),

    I came to your most excellent blog after reading your many posts at gnolls.org.


    My journey is similar to yours, in my early 40's wanting to get back to the vitality I felt in my (non smoking) 20's.
    I am a keen cook, and had gradually moved towards paleo style, before I even knew what it was. Once I did know what it was, and after reading wheat belly, wheat has been banished, more fat is welcomed, and occaisonal use of buckwheat etc for some adventurous cooking.

    I've really enjoyed seeing your recipes and photography, presentation makes an ordinary meal seem like something special.

    I haven't made stroganoff for years, but you have inspired me to do just that!

    Keep up the great work.

    PS - I do find the website a bit confusing - with leaving and living in the ice age , but all the content is great!

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    1. Hi Paul (N) :D

      Thanks for dropping in.

      Have fun with the Stroganoff! It really is a simple, quick and easy meal. I'm making it more and more when I need something simple - in the old days, I'd make a bowl of pasta; now, I make a bowl of meat, fat and veggies.

      I hear you loud and clear about the Leaving/Living thing. I'm going to wind the Leaving blog down and get shot. I update it so infrequently and when I do, I often second post it here too.

      Back in the very early days of paleo eating, I posted all the potatoes and dairy over there. Then, the dairy came over here ... then the potatoes. As it happpens, I'm really not making a habit of pushing the boundaries of paleo - lentils, beans, pseudo-grains and so on are really not a part of the way I eat or want to eat. Potatoes and dairy are, and I unashamedly post about it here.

      Leaving is gone ... or will be shortly.

      In terms of paleo eating, we Gnolls have a head-start on many. For others reading, Gnolls are a curious breed of paleo-eaters who adhere to a more predatory sense of eating: don't snack - prey grazes, don't eat seedsand nuts - prey do that, do gorge when you eat - predators do this, do fast in between - predators do this.

      We have a head-start and really don't need to dance around the edges when it comes to what it is that we eat - we eat what we do because we have principles, not a book of rules. Paleo for me is about 'The Paleo Diet' plus the things that I am certain that I can eat beyond Paleo.

      For me, being a northern European and a lactase producer, dairy is fine - so long as it is fatty or fermented, for best results. Potatoes are fine - it's starch and I'm active.

      Yeah, I went off on one there ...

      Again, thanks for stopping by Paul - great to hear a whoop from another Gnoll. Hope you enjoy the Stroganoff.

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  2. Hi Paul,

    It is interesting that there is so much grappling around the term "paleo", I think it's time for anew name, as we have progressed, and paleo invariably is interpreted as a re-enactment/caveman diet.

    I was at first trying to re-create many of the starchy baked goods, but that is less and less these days - eat real foods - don't try to create complex things that we can;t recognise - that is what got us into this mess in the first place!

    though i will have to try your Yorkies...

    I grew up milking cows so dairy is in for me, but I find, since giving up cereal/oat porridge that i don;t have any need for milk, and my dairy is kefir and cream (I make my own butter from that) and small amounts of aged cheese - the brands that are from unpasteurised milk.

    But, truly, butter has to be the best flavour enhancer ever invented - butter and salt makes any veg taste good - no wonder parents can't get kids to eat lifeless steamed veg with no salt/butter/anything, and then wonder why they crave fatty (and sugary) snack foods.

    I am impressed with your mileage record on the shoes, got your money's worth from those. I have a pair of Meindl (German made) hiking boots that have done well over 1000km in 12 years and a re finally losing the gtx and waterproofness. Good shoes are worth every penny.

    Looking forward to your review of the VFF's.

    Time to rock and Gnoll...

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    1. I must be up to about 1500 miles on those boots - I'm looking for something a little more rugged this year and think Brasher SuperLite II might well fit the bill.

      The VFF TrekSports are over 500 miles now - they get less muddy/boggy use simply because the grip is not there. They're for dry days and trails with occasional mud.

      Yes, I think paleo might well need a new term - there are a number out there, including Primal, Archevore and so on. I like the term 'Archevore' but it is intellectual and not immediately understandable; 'Primal' tells us all we need to know.

      Those Yorkshire Puddings work out well. The best Yorkshires are stodgy anyway. Maybe a good helping of baking powder would give them more lift?

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    2. Clearly, you do a lot of hiking! I am envious.

      I think the problem with paleo, primal etc is that we all know that, 10,000 years ago, no one was making anything remotely like your stroganoff, or the mixed green salad with vinegar dressing.
      So while the foods themselves may be paleo, or most of them, our combinations and cooking are not.
      I think the "just eat real foods" diet is a better term, though we have to then qualify it to eliminate grains, beans and seed oils.

      When I spent a summer in Gloucestershire as manager and cook at a pub, I learned how to make Yorkies, and they rose into perfect cup shapes each time. Recipe was just flour egg and milk, but I can't remember the proportions and have never been able to re-create it! I do remember the chef that showed me saying baking powder was unneccessary, but then, when you are not using wheat, I find that it is. Actually, I use baking soda, as whatever it is, is always kefir-sourdoughed first.

      Now, I'm going for a walk!

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    3. I walk every day and I'm lucky to live "in the hills". Weekends, I get a really good walk in. Some days, it's a run - fell running style, muddy, boggy, drizzle, rain and a hell of a lot of fun!

      What we've learned from gnolls.org is that dietary re-enactment is not the point. Understanding that neolithic foods which require cultivation are not the best thing to eat. Eating foods which require little by way of preparation is, broadly, what paleo is about.

      We are not our ancestors - we are modern humans. We will have adapted, although not to all foods yet, many of which we merely tolerate.

      Making meals from ingredients which have not come about from any industrial processing is the key - if food comes with an ingredient list, it's not real food. Real food is ingredients!

      I spent a lot of time in the latter part of my first year of paleo looking to supplant or mimic some foods that I adore but cannot make as "paleo". Simply replacing the ingredients and putting the word paleo in front of it does not make it paleo - nor does it matter. I'm relaxing a bit on that now, simply because as a well established paleo eater I can enjoy an off-table meal maybe once a week, and, I don't confine myself so ridigly in the first place - I apply paleo thinking to starches and dairy.

      That's paleo+ - paleo plus starch, plus dairy, minus dogma.

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  3. Hi again,
    I also like he way you approach 'paleo'. I myself am still dairy, nightshade, nut, seed and imitation grain/seed free after trying to do the mimic-cooking with nut flour and amaranth/sorghum. (None of them agree with my digestive system). This is my 5th month eating real foods and the desire to recreate flour-based foods is finally dissipating. Luckily I've never been a big fan of bread, cakes or biscuits. I find small servings of green plantains, green bananas, yams and sweet potatoes, coco yams, breadfruit and dasheen are plenty enough to fulfill any desires for a 'stodgy' accompaniment to any meal. Also frozen fruit and a blender comes in handy every now and then. How long have u been a real foodie may i ask?

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    1. I've always eaten well, very little, if any processed food, and the worst was probably pasta and pastry. I was never one for snack foods, couldn't see the point in pizza, never ate at fast food restaurants and had little interest in desserts other than simple ice cream, panna cotta or cheesecake.

      There are entries on this blog that go back a few years showing that I was always along the right lines prior to paleo, but used pasta and pastry as fillers and cheap meals.

      In terms of an intention to "go paleo", I did that just over a year ago. Dairy was never put out, quite simply because I was doing so well on probiotic yoghurt for my gastric reflux cure, all grains and beans were pushed out, potatoes removed and other roots substantially lowered while I got back to a sound weight.

      Maybe six months later, I got curious about beans and lentils after some talk amongst the community about it being okay. I just found I didn't get on with them anymore and actually didn't much like the taste - puy and green lentils are okay, but nothing I'd say that formed a real interest.

      Shortly after, I started to look at sorghum flour. Some success, but again, I've lost interest.

      These last few months have been really pure. Pretty much paleo, straight down the line ... plus dairy and starches.

      I'm not as gung-ho about fat now, finding that the fat within the meat and fish is sufficient, with dripping or coconut oil to wet up greens. I'm also not quite as mad about meat - fish fills a large quota of my weekly protein intake.

      I've found a stability and you might well see a subtle change in the food I've been posting over the last year, particularly over the last few months - a lighter, purer and more colourful array of dishes, I think.

      I'm concertedly following a seasonal route this year, staring around March this year. Emphasis is very much upon seasonal food and sourcing food that is grown seasonally. I'm happy to change shape through the year, since this is quite natural.

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  4. Sounds like you're sticking to what works for YOU and i think that's what it's all about. I find I eat less meat but lots of cow foot stew and paya (sheep foot), two things i wouldn't have dared eat just five short months ago, now i luuurve them both. Pork doesn't agree with me but i do eat polish sausage and bacon in small doses. I don't like beef except for mince so then it's mainly chicken, duck or fish. I don't consider myself to be paleo (even though my diet is actually getting to be extreme paleo), but I am at a point where i'm willing to cut out anything that helps me feel better. So far it's the only thing that works. Yay for real food. Anyway keep up the great and varied recipes, your blog is one of my faves.

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    1. Thanks, pal ... will do :D

      Paya ... now there's something I've not had for a good while!

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  5. @ apd,

    It sounds like you have identified (and eliminated) quite a few food irritants.

    This suggests you may have a "leaky gut" problem - many people do, but some more than others.
    I suggest looking into the GAPS diet - it is a protocol to "heal and seal" your gut. It seems quite similar to paleo, but it is designed to remove all irritant foods, re-establish healthy gut flora, allow healing,and then gradually re-intoduce various foods and see which work and which don't.

    A leaky gut creates reactions to many foods, even though it is likely only a few foods (e.g. wheat) that caused the leaky gut in the first place.

    It sounds like you are halfway there, but I'd highly recommend checking it out as you clearly have some food reactions, and many of them are caused by a leaky gut, and that condition - food allergies - is reversible in 99% of people.

    Many people are able to - quite happily - eat foods that they couldn't before, once their gut is healed and sealed.

    It also resolves many auto immune diseases, and some brain diseases like autism, alzheimers etc.

    <Many people go gluten free casein free (GFCF) but the author of GAPS is quite explicit that while this will relieve some symptoms, it, alone, won't heal the gut.

    Once youa re healed, you can likely then eat all the wonderful dishes that Paul H is showing us!

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