The Americans + Beef Stroganoff Recipe

A full menu inspired by AMC’s The Americans + America’s Test Kitchen’s recipe for Classic Beef Stroganoff.

After Abe and I (mostly I) finish binge watching Felicity, we decide to graduate to another Keri Russell series, The Americans.  It is incredibly well-done, and incredibly addictive.  Everything is top notch – the acting, the writing, the directing, and the attention to 80’s detail.  Our favorite thing to do is make up lyrics to the theme song when we’re bored.

the americans white bread

For a show about Russian spies, there are not a lot of Russian eats.  There is one mention of caviar, but really that’s about it.  But there is a ton of American food.  The stuff from my childhood, like white sandwich bread and discontinued cereals!

the americans brownies the americans dinner

We devour the first 3 seasons in a month.  Here’s what I crave the whole time, and here’s what you will too.

  • Sandwiches made on Wonder-like Bread
  • Toaster Waffles
  • Frusen Glädjé (I forget this stuff exists until I see an episode with the familiar white pint)
  • Steak
  • Snickers Bars
  • Jiffy Pop Popcorn
  • Rocky Road Ice Cream (eaten together, below).

the americans jiffy pop

To get ready to watch the current/4th season live, I’m thinking a Classic Beef Stroganoff will be the perfect main course for “The Americans” dinner menu.  For me, of course, and not my vegetarian husband, Abe.  It’s a Russian dish which wouldn’t be considered too “foreign” or “suspicious” on an American family’s dinner table.  I have actually never eaten it before, and I am excited to finally make it!

The recipe comes from my most-trusted source when it comes to cooking – America’s Test Kitchen and Cooks Country.  I listen to their podcast and watch their TV show religiously.  Now I’m an affiliate blogger, so I get to share some of their tried-and-true recipes with y’all right here. Na zdarOv’ye!

Classic Beef Stroganoff


  • 1 ½ tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 12 ounces white button mushrooms, wiped clean and halved if small, quartered if medium, cut into sixths if large
  • Salt and ground black pepper
  • ¾ pound beef tenderloin (about 2 fillets), cut into ½-inch long, ?-inch wide strips
  • ½ cup low-sodium beef broth
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 small onion, minced (½ cup)
  • 1 teaspoon tomato paste
  • 1 ½ teaspoons dark brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 8 ounces egg noodles, cooked in salted water, drained, and tossed wih 2 tablespoons butter


  1. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in heavy-bottomed 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat until hot and shimmering, but not smoking, about 2 minutes; swirl to coat pan. Add mushrooms and cook over high heat without stirring for 30 seconds; season with salt and pepper and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until mushrooms are lightly browned, about 4 minutes longer. Transfer to medium bowl.
  2. Return skillet to high heat, add remaining 1/2 tablespoon oil; swirl to coat pan. Place tenderloin strips in skillet. Using tongs, spread the meat into single layer, making sure that strips do not touch, and cook without turning until well-browned on first side, 2 minutes. Turn strips and cook on second side until well-browned, about 1 minute longer. Season with salt and pepper to taste and transfer to bowl with mushrooms.
  3. Add beef broth to skillet, scraping up browned bits on pan bottom with wooden spoon; simmer until broth is reduced to 1/4 cup, about 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer broth to bowl with mushrooms and beef, scraping skillet clean with rubber spatula.
  4. Return skillet to medium-low heat and add butter; when butter foams, add onion, tomato paste, and brown sugar. Cook, stirring frequently, until onion is lightly browned and softened, about 6 minutes; stir in flour until incorporated. Gradually whisk in chicken broth and wine; increase heat to medium-high and bring to boil, whisking occasionally, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until thickened, about 2 minutes. Whisk liquid from mushrooms and beef into sauce and simmer to incorporate. Stir about 1/2 cup of hot sauce into sour cream, then stir mixture back into sauce. Add mushrooms and beef; heat to warm through, about 1 minute. Adjust seasonings with salt and pepper and serve over buttered egg noodles.