Lactose-Free Beef Stroganoff

Do you remember that time I said I was slowly killing my family with milk products? I’m trying to make amends. A quick Google search showed me that I couldn’t get Lactaid sour cream at my local grocery store, but I could sure as heck get Lactaid cottage cheese and mix it with lemon juice.

Totally failed to get a plated picture. The best I could do was two containers of ingredients and a pan of leftovers. Whoops.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 lb sirloin, sliced
  • Salt
  • Garlic pepper
  • 1 tbsp avocado oil
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups beef broth
  • 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 tsp thyme
  • 1/2 cup cottage cheese
  • 1 tsp lemon juice

Season the sirloin with salt and garlic pepper. Heat the avocado oil over medium high heat and brown the steak in small batches.

Lower the heat to medium low and melt the butter. Add onions and garlic and sauté until onions are translucent. Keep an eye on the heat to ensure the garlic doesn’t burn. Add the broth, Worcestershire, Dijon, thyme, and adjust for salt if needed. If you use Better Than Bouillon you likely won’t need to add anymore salt at this point, but people are really effing weird about salt and you do you boo.

Add the steak and any juices to the mix and then melt in the cottage cheese. Once the cheese is melted, add the lemon juice and serve over egg noodles.

The texture was exactly the same as my normal stroganoff and everyone ate two bowls. Then I dipped some French bread in the leftover sauce, so uh, yeah, it was really good.

-Lin

Sous Vide Ribeye

I really love steak. Like, I really really love it. If I could get away with it I would cook it every night. Flat iron, sirloin, strip, t-bone, flank, filet… all great, but nothing tops a ribeye. Fat is flavor, you know? In fact, I love my husband extra because he’s willing to give me the eye from his ribeye.

You’re going to need a sous vide machine for this one. I can’t recommend this gadget enough since it’s basically idiot-proof. As long as you don’t mess up your vacuum seal, and you stick with tried and true recipes, you really can’t mess meat up with this thing. Sous vide is not a quick cook, so it’s usually not a weeknight meal. I like to pull it out on the weekends and let the steaks go for a few hours. In a few weeks we’ll do a 24 hour sous vide brisket and see what this baby can really do to some meat before we smoke it.

A good piece of beef doesn’t need much more than salt and pepper, so you won’t see any crazy marinades here. Meat rubs/marinades are for cheap cuts and nothing will change my mind about it. A little cayenne, paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, etc., are all good additions to a steak, but don’t get wild if you shelled out for the good beef. Let that meat speak for itself.

Ingredients:

  • 2 ribeye steaks
  • S&P
  • Steak Seasoning, (Just order the Texjoy already!)

Special Gear:

  • Sous Vide Machine, I have an Anova and I love it. The phone app is also awesome.
  • A container that holds enough water to keep your sous vide happy and has a snug lid. My machine informs me loudly with flashing red lights when it isn’t happy with me.
  • Vacuum sealer
  • Vacuum bags

Season and vacuum seal your steaks separately. You can put them both in the bag, but we usually only slice up one steak between two of us. I put the extra finished steak (still in the bag) in the fridge overnight and it only take a few minutes for the circulator to heat it back up the next day before searing. You’ll have just enough time to prep some veggies.

I generally prefer my steaks to be medium-rare or rare, but when I sous vide ribeye I cook them at 137o for 2-3 hours. I frequent r/sousvide over on and refused to go above 132o for the longest time against their advice, but they were right, 137o just gives ribeye a really great texture. When you pull your steak out of the circulator it’s going to look sad and grey.

Like this. It looks like this.

Cut open the bag, drain the juices, (some folks save the juices from all of their cooks, but I’m not keeping a bag of meat juices hanging around, ok?) and pat the steak dry. You don’t want any visible moisture left on the exterior when it hits the pan.

To sear, heat 2 tbsp of butter over medium to medium-high heat for several minutes. Brown the steak on both sides for 1-2 minutes. Slice it up and serve with some sad sauce-less carrots and don’t forget to steal the fat from your spouse’s steak. You did all of the work, so you get the treats.

– Lin

Sad Baby Carrots: air fryer for 18 minutes at 380o. Salt, pepper, and Penzey’s Fox Point seasoning blend.

Teppanyaki Steak & Fried Rice

Griddled goodness.

We use our Blackstone Griddle twice a week, at least. I talked the Husband into buying us one before the Great Ice Storm of 2021™️ blew in. We luckily didn’t lose power, but I spent a lot of time outside making fried rice just to get away from everyone. I have perfected this stuff, and it’s GOOD.

This griddle is uhhmazing and Im obsessed with it. I think that it’s the best cooking appliance I’ve picked up so far, and I have A LOT of cooking appliances. You can cook breakfast, lunch, or dinner on a single flat surface for a crowd, and then scrape it clean in under a minute. Cleanup is extra easy since they make these little aluminum pans that fit into the drip tray.

True genius.

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs sirloin steak
  • 6 tbsp butter, divided
  • 4 large eggs
  • Salt
  • Garlic Pepper
  • Yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 cups of jasmine rice, cooked and cooled
  • 4 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp sesame oil

Heat your griddle over medium high on your left side and medium to medium low on your right side. Put down 2 tablespoons of butter on the cooler side and start your chopped onion to softening. Season with salt and pepper blend. You’ll want to use griddle spatulas and a scraper so you can pretend you’re at a Japanese teppanyaki restaurant while you poorly flip the onions around. The kids won’t be impressed, but you’ll feel accomplished.

Note: I season every new ingredient dropped on the griddle with salt and garlic pepper for this meal. Lawry’s makes a great garlic pepper blend that’s easy to find, but I’m currently using Penzey’s Florida pepper mix because it’s good on literally everything and I’m addicted.

Get yourself one of those cute condiment squeeze bottles for your avocado oil and lay a few lines across the hot side of the griddle. Drop your sirloins on when the oil heats and season them up.

The onions should be quickly softening and browning by now so add your rice into the pile and spread it out with your spatula. Season with salt and pepper mix, and add 2 tablespoons of butter to melt in. Shake 2 tablespoons of soy sauce and 1 teaspoon of sesame oil across the rice (the sesame oil is super fragrant so go easy). Mix the rice up well and let it sit to crisp up.

Squirt a little oil down for the eggs and crack them onto the griddle. Salt and pepper them and let them cook up sunny-side. Check your steaks and flip them if they are ready for it, and season the other side of your meat. Your eggs should be almost ready at this point (I like my yolks jammy) and you can slide them on top of the rice mix. Use your spatula to start chopping the eggs into the rice and mixing everything up. When the eggs are finished cooking and the rice seems crispy, scrape it all into a large bowl.

Grab a knife and slice the sirloins into small pieces on the griddle. Add the last two tablespoons of soy sauce and butter. Do that fun double spatula thing with the sirloin and flip everything around to mix it up. Add to the top of your rice and dish it all out.

The kids go nuts for fried rice and while I don’t use a lot of extra veggies in mine, they’re at the very least getting some extra protein from the eggs. If I have enough wine next week I’ll have LSH record me “showing off” my griddle fried rice and spatula skills.

-Lin

Instant Pot French Dip Sandwiches

In which my pressure cooker gets the better of me and I time my dishes so poorly that I give up on finishing touches.

Sad, cold fries next to an unbuttered, untoasted roll.

You may remember a brief reminder during my Easy AF Spaghetti and Meatballs post that I’m not perfect. Shocking, I know. I really exude competency and prowess in all things I do. Maybe we can blame the wine this time? Bota Box still hasn’t reached out regarding that sponsorship and Black Box customer service claims they have a C&D in the mail, certified with return receipt.

There are times things just don’t happen in the kitchen. We work, we’re tired, the kids are wild, the dog is eating something off the floor, and there is a new Marvel show that really needs watching. I had a bad kitchen night yesterday. Things just didn’t work out between us, and I’m leaving the stove for the griddle tomorrow.

Even with cold fries and unmelted cheese on my pitifully untoasted hoagie roll, this French dip beef and gravy was good. The soy and Worcestershire marry and work their flavor all the way through the chuck. I pulled that sandwich apart and soaked it in gravy after taking that very sad school cafeteria looking picture. Better luck next time!

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs chuck roast, cut into 2-3 inch chunks.
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp each of S&P
  • 1 tbsp avocado oil
  • 1 yellow onion, sliced
  • 8 oz mushroom, sliced
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • Pinch of dried herbs, such as rosemary or thyme.
  • Butter
  • Sandwich rolls or a hunk of baguette

Put your instant pot on sauté and heat the avocado oil. Use the S&P on your chuck chunks and brown all sides. Add your onion and mushrooms without caring about crowding the pan, because you’re really just done with this whole kitchen experience even though we just started. We should have ordered pizza.

Add the Worcestershire/soy sauces, the garlic, the broth, and your chosen herbs. Cook on high pressure for 45 minutes. By the time your pot comes to pressure, you’ll have already cooked your fries.

Shred the cooked beef with two forks and pile it on your sandwich, but be better than I am about those finishing touches. Butter and toast that bun and melt the cheese under the broiler. Serve your sandwich with a cute little cup of gravy to dip with. Or, lose your mind like me and ladle it over the sandwich and attack with a fork. Your choice.

– Lin

Gluten-Free Mexican Style Shepherd’s Pie

I definitely tossed the cubed potatoes into the air fryer to shorten my cooking time. We were hungry, sue me.

I almost never make things that are gluten-free (hi, pasta!), and after having dinner with a dear friend that eats gluten-free as much as possible, I figured I needed to skip the pasta and bring back potatoes. This means that it’s not a low carb dish, but what can you do?

My husband informed me that this dish is heavy. By that he meant you should only serve this on days you don’t intend to move around much after eating. You may feel like a half casserole pan is too small, but I assure you, you really don’t need a full pan of this stuff. The Husband was right, we didn’t move from the couch for hours after eating.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb ground chuck, I used lean and avoided draining. Whatever will I do with my extra 1 minute?
  • 4 oz shredded “Mexican style” cheese
  • 2 medium sized baking potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1/4 of a yellow onion, minced not diced, otherwise your onion hating husband will complain.
  • 1 clove of minced garlic
  • 1 packet of McCormick gluten free taco seasoning
  • 1 cup of beef broth
  • S&P
  • Optional, chopped green onion and sour cream for topping

Scramble your ground chuck over medium heat until browned and then add the onion and garlic. If you do this is an oven safe pot, a casserole dish is unnecessary. Let your onion start to soften (5 minutes), and mix in your taco seasoning and beef broth.

I didn’t have any of those super handy frozen cubed hash browns on hand, so I used two baking potatoes and cheated with the air fryer to cut down cook time. Peeled, cubed, S&P, olive oil, and 400 degrees for 12 minutes. (If you use frozen potatoes cook the whole casserole for around 20 minutes before broiling.)

If you’re smart, you’ll have cooked up your ground beef mixture in an oven safe pot and you can directly add a layer of cheese, then potatoes, then the rest of the cheese and heave it into the oven. I, on the other hand, managed to get multiple pots and appliances dirty to make one small casserole. What can I say? It’s a gift. 400 degrees for around 12 minutes and then light that baby up with the broiler to brown your cheese.

Is there anything better than browned cheese? Survey says… there is not.

I did add some sour cream to my bowl and it really didn’t add anything to the dish for me. Next time I’ll thinly slice some green onions for texture.

-Lin