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Cowboy Camp Beef Stroganoff

Here’s one for the holidays while you’re quarantined. Beef Stroganoff is an old recipe. I stumbled on the history of this dish while researching recipes for cow camps and chuck wagon cooking. This very old Russian dish was created for Russian aristocracy by a French chef and brought to America by Russian émigrés. Who doesn’t love a good cut of beef  in a delicious sauce?

My guys have never cared for the twang of sour cream used in most Stroganoff recipes, but they really liked this version made with buttermilk. The traditional dish pairs mushrooms, beef and sour cream. One son likes the mushrooms, another does not. Sometimes I have mushrooms on the side. You can make your own version.


2 lb. beef shoulder or tenderized round

3 tablespoons shortening

1 1/2 cups clear beef broth

1 cup of sour buttermilk

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons onions, chopped

1 tablespoon flour

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Slice meat into pieces as thin as possible, about 1/4″ thick and 2″ long. Salt and pepper the meat. Melt shortening in a cast iron skillet, add meat and onions. Cook over medium heat until meat is done.

For the sauce, cook together shortening and flour, until it is of a medium consistency. Not a thick paste. More shortening can be added if necessary. To this add the beef broth, stir well. Cook over medium heat, and bring to a slow boil. Stirring continually. Add the sour buttermilk. Add meat and onion mixture to the sauce and gently simmer until well heated. Serve with mashed potatoes, rice or egg noodles. Note: To sour buttermilk, let it stand in a covered bowl until thick.


Keep a watch out for my newest book, Keep ‘Em Fed and Keep ‘Em Rollin’: The All-American Chuck Wagon Cookbook, which will be available in hardcover September 1, 2020. Pre-order it NOW at major online bookstores.

Cow Camp Beef Stroganoff is one of over 100 recipes you’ll find inside, authentic chuck wagon and cow camp meals that can be cooked in your kitchen today. In addition it’s filled with history, cowboy stories, and my photographs from a Texas ranch. Watch this blog for more information about upcoming book events.

If you know of a group or club that needs a speaker, I’m pulling all of my research into a power point presentation titled “A Day on the Trail”. Happy eating, everybody!

Hardcover, available from TwoDot Books (Rowman & Littlefield)

Natalie Bright is an author, blogger, speaker, and hobby photographer. Her articles and stories have appeared in a wide variety of publications, as well as penning novels for adults and children. Coming in January 2021 is a new series set in Texas on the fictional Wild Cow Ranch by CKN Christian Publishing. You can find it for pre-order at Amazon Kindle Unlimited Deals.