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Sunday, October 3, 2010

Salisbury Steak

When I saw this Paula Deen recipe, I was transported back to being a kid. I remembered the Swanson tv dinner that had the salisbury steak, mashed potatoes, corn and a brownie. The brownie always got overcooked and turned crispy, but it was still good. My mom was a great cook, so don't get any ideas that I was a latch key kid eating frozen meals alone in front of the Brady Bunch. I think the strongest memories of salisbury steak meals were snowy nights when my dad went out plowing and my mom didn't want to cook anything big for just the two of us, yet we still wanted something hot. So tv dinner it was.

Noyan wasn't familiar with salisbury steak. When he asked what dinner would be tonight and I told him, his reply was, "This blog you write is going to make us go broke." Little did he know that salisbury steak is just hamburger, formed into patties that sort of resemble steak, smothered in gravy. Instead of corn and potatoes, I made succotash. I even made brownies--but these weren't overcooked and crispy, I promise.

Salisbury Steak

2 pounds ground beef

1/2 cup dry bread crumbs

1 large egg, lightly beaten

2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

1/4 tsp salt

1 (8-oz) package sliced baby bella mushrooms

2 tbsp all-purpose flour

1 (10 1/2 oz) can condensed French onion soup

1 (10 1/2 oz) can beef consommé

1. In a large bowl, combine ground beef, bread crumbs, egg, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, pepper, and salt. Form mixture into 6-8 (4 inch) patties. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.

2. Add patties to skillet, in batches if necessary, and cook for 7 to 8 minutes per side or until browned. Remove patties from pan; set aside. Reserve 2 tablespoons drippings in skillet

3. Add mushrooms to skillet, and sauté for 1 to 2 minutes or until just tender. Add flour and onion soup, and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes. Stir in consommé.

4. Return patties to skillet; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer, uncovered, for 30 to 40 minutes or until patties are cooked through and sauce is thickened. Serve immediately.

The Verdict: I thought it was good, Noyan thought it was very good, and Amir thought it was great.

I would have given it a very good as well, but what I wasn't super bowled over by was the fact that the canned soups made it very salty. I just checked the Campbell's website and neither the French Onion nor the Beef Consommé come in a low-sodium version. (Please let me know if you come across another brand that sells either in a low-sodium option.) Otherwise, it was really good. Simmering the patties in the sauce took away both the hamburger taste and consistency and made it more like--well, steak.

Amir was the one who made Noyan and I both laugh. He ate his entire patty, including little crumbs of meat, then asked, "More?" As Noyan said, if he eats this much at 2, what's going to happen when he's a teenager? Luckily, this is a fairly inexpensive meal to prepare. Whereas last night we ate three patties, one went to work with Noyan for lunch, and the remaining four were frozen for another night's meal, in ten years Noyan and I will eat one and Amir will eat...the reamining six.

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