Beef Stroganoff

This dish, Beef Stroganoff with mustard (govjadina po-strogonovski, s gorchitseju), like many popular dishes eaten today, has a very interesting story. How much of this story is authentic is open to interpretation because there are many more conflicting accounts of how the dish originated.

Usually the most common story about the history of this dish dates back to the 19th century . Although not a new recipe, Larousse Gastronomique notes that similar dishes were known since the 18th century but insists the dish by this specific name was the creation of chef Charles Briere. He was working for Count Pavel Stroganoff, a 19th century Russian diplomat, and has given the name of the dish after him when he submitted the recipe to L 'Art Culinaire competition in 1891. In this competition, he won the first prize award for it! Supposedly, this recipe had beef, mushrooms and sour cream, just like today's version.

The original recipe involves seasoned and lightly floured beef cubes (not stripes) sautéed, sauced with prepared with mustard and then finished with a small amount of sour cream.

After the fall of Imperial Russia, the recipe was popularly served in hotels and restaurants of China before the start of the Second World War.  Russian and Chinese immigrants, as well as U.S. servicemen stationed in pre-Communist China, brought several variants of the dish to the United States.

The Beef Stroganoff recipe was first written in English in 1932 by the author of the book, Ambrose Heath Good Food. Eventually, it began to be featured in popular cookbooks and quickly became the popular and delicious dish it is today.

For those who love food history, I found this interesting link--

A Gift to Young Housewives, Elena Molokhovets, [Moscow, 1861], recipe #635

Beef Stroganov with mustard
  • 2 lbs tender beef
  • 10-15 allspice
  • 1/4 lb butter
  • salt
  • 2 spoons flour
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon Sareptskaja mustard
Two hours before service, cut a tender piece of raw beef into small cubes and sprinkle with salt and some allspice. Before dinner, mix together 1/16 lb (polos mushka) butter and 1 spoon flour, fry lightly, and dilute with 2 glasses bouillon, 1 teaspoon of prepared Sareptskaja mustard, and a little pepper. Mix, bring to a boil, and strain. Add 2 tablespoons very fresh sour cream before serving. Then fry the beef in butter, add it to the sauce, bring once to boil, and serve.

My version of Beef Stroganoff

Prep Time


Total Time




En Español​​

  • 1 pound sirloin, tenderloin, chuck roast, or filet mignon cut into small cubes
  • 2tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • Kosher salt and  fresh ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • ½ onion or 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 8 0unce mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon dill
  • 1 teaspoon mustard
  • 1 ½ cup beef broth
  • 3 tablespoons cognac
  • 1/2 cup sour cream

(Use more butter if you like, I typically use a smaller amount so I don’t feel as guilty doubling up on my dessert portion!)

1.  Remove all the fat and gristle from the meat before cutting the meat in small cubes. Season the meat with salt, black pepper and half of the crushed garlic, then dust with flour. 

2.  In a large skillet heat the butter and olive oil over moderate heat until hot but not smoking, add the garlic, onion, shallot and sauté until the onion is translucent, about 3 minutes.
3.  Increase the heat to high/med-high and add the meat cubes and be sure to stir frequently to prevent the meat from burning. Once the meat turns golden brown, reduce the heat to medium and add the sliced mushrooms, stirring occasionally for about 4 minutes.
4.  Add the cognac sauté for 1 minute while sprinkling salt, pepper, dill, beef broth and mustard. Let simmer for 10 -15 minutes or until thickened.
5.  Reduce the heat to low and add the sour cream, mixing thoroughly for one or two minutes, (do not boil). If you like you can add little more chopped parsley. Remove the skillet from the heat and serve over rice, fettuccini, egg noodles, potatoes, or over French fries. Enjoy!