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September 24, 2007

A Birthday Party: Beef Stroganoff and Chocolate Cake with Almond Buttercream Icing

Katherine's Birthday Cake

Saturday was my sister's birthday and I'm a big believer in celebrating a birthday! Some people as they get older don't want to celebrate their life anymore and choose to mourn the day instead, but I think birthdays should be embraced and reveled in. Life is a grand adventure and birthdays simply remind us of our many adventures along the way!

I invited Katherine, Ben and Nelson over for dinner to celebrate. The tradition at our house growing up was that you got to pick what we had for dinner on your birthday and you got to pick your cake. Katherine chose Beef Stroganoff and chocolate cake with almond buttercream icing. Katherine also wanted a salad, some sort of veggie and some yeast rolls, so I made a big spinach salad with a choice of homemade ranch or blue cheese dressing, some roasted asparagus and a batch of Parker House rolls. We broke out the good china and had a grand old time!

Birthday Table

Over all everything came together well. The rolls could have risen a bit longer, but I got side tracked. The Beef Stroganoff was a play on the one my mom used to make as a child, that I adapted into Mushroom Stroganoff over the years. This go around though I skipped the onion soup mix and used all fresh ingredients and instead of ground beef I took a pot roast and sliced it across the grain into somewhat bite sized chunks. The result was wonderful! I highly recommend this if you like this sort of dish!

Beef Stroganoff

What You'll Need For the Beef Stroganoff:
Extra virgin olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 small package of mushrooms, sliced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
Sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons of flour
2 1/2 pounds of beef tips or other type of beef cut into chunks
1 15 ounce can of tomato sauce
1 cup of sour cream
1 package of egg noodles cooked according to package directions

In a large pot or skillet (and I mean LARGE!) sauté onion, mushrooms and garlic until tender with a pinch of sea salt and some freshly ground black pepper. Once the veggies are tender add two tablespoons of flour and cook for 2 minutes stirring constantly. Add beef and cook for about 15 minutes until it's mostly brown stirring occasionally so it won't stick. (Note: A little red here and there is not a problem as you'll be cooking the dish a while more.) Add tomato sauce and cook for 35-40 minutes to allow the beef to become tender. Add sour cream and cook for 2 minutes or until heated through. Serve over egg noodles.

Notes: In a pinch you could use onion soup mix. Just omit the onion and garlic. You could also use garlic powder or salt if you're out of fresh garlic. Having made it both ways I highly recommend the fresh onion and garlic. Both variations are good, but the fresh version definitely was the best! You can also substitute more mushrooms for the beef to make the vegetarian equivalent.

After dinner we dug into the cake!


Katherine's Birthday Cake

Cake: The Inside

The basket weave wasn't as neat as I would have liked, but the icing was having issues on Saturday so we went with what came out. It turned out ok in the end and it tasted delicious, so that's all you can ask for. :o)

Posted by Dianne at September 24, 2007 8:37 AM

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Tonight Jamison is having spicy steak tips and mashed potatoes. I'm having beef stroganoff and Lex is having chicken and noodles. Lex and I will also have an as yet to be decided vegetable. What are you having?... [Read More]

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Comments

Happy Birthday Kate! I hope you had a great time! By the looks of the food, I'm betting you did!

Posted by: Dar at September 24, 2007 1:22 PM

Thanks, Dar! :)
It was very, very yummy. Dianne even found some pasteurized bleu cheese so I could have some of the bleu cheese dressing! :)

It was humid as all get-out up here on Saturday (pretty unusual for this late in September), so I'm sure that had something to do with the icing not cooperating. :)

Posted by: katherine at September 24, 2007 3:27 PM

Great birthday meal Dianne and beautiful job on the cake decorating! I agree w/ you, birthdays should be celebrated not mourned...

Posted by: Bruno at September 29, 2007 9:07 PM

Thanks! :o)

Posted by: Dianne at October 2, 2007 9:06 AM

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