Monday, May 21, 2012

Beef Stroganoff

Beef Stroganoff - by Mark Barry
Winter is already far over, but there is still enough room out there to cook some healthy and deliciously hot meals. Among these recipes, beef stroganoff is a good contender. It is basically composed of beef and mushrooms in sour sauce poured over noodles, rice, or even fries.

Beef stroganoff traces its roots from 19th century Russia, during which there was no mention of mushrooms in the original recipe. Eventually, the recipe caught on with pre-communist China and the US during the 50's. There have been slight modifications in the recipe (particularly the idea of putting the recipe over noodles or rice) as popularity of the recipe allowed it to go global.

If you are going to make beef stroganoff, it is essential that when you buy beef online, you only pick the best cuts. Stroganoff is a meat-intensive recipe; the quality of the beef you buy online can largely determine the overall quality of the dish. Preparation of stroganoff is easy, though, so it possible even for the most inexperienced of cooks to produce something decent.

Modern stroganoff requires sirloin or tenderloin but budget-conscious individuals may want to go class and use less expensive meat.

Now here is one basic beef stroganoff recipe that you could follow. The measure of the sour cream varies from person to person. Adjust according to what is palatable for you.


- 6 Tbsp butter
- 1 pound sirloin or tenderloin, cut into 1-inch-by-2-inch strips
- 1 medium shallot or onion, chopped
- 8 ounces of mushroom
- 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 cup sour cream
- Salt and pepper to taste
- parsley springs (optional)


1. Melt 3 Tbsp of butter over a skillet and use this to cook the beef. The beef should be cooked quickly. You do not want to burn it but you do not want to set the temperature so high that you also burn the butter. Sprinkle the salt and pepper for added taste. Once you are done, set this aside for a moment. Cook the shallots and onions over the same skillet and set this aside with the beef.

2. Once you are done cooking the rest of the beef, melt the rest of the butter and start cooking the mushrooms. Sprinkle in the nutmeg and stir occasionally every few minutes or so.

3. Turn down the heat to low and start mixing in the sour cream. Depending on your own taste, you could add in a few tablespoons of water in order to dissolve the cream. Take care not to put the cream to boiling point, stirring it constantly with the mushrooms. Mix in the beef strips that you have cooked earlier until everything is well-blended.

4. Serve on the carbohydrate source of your choice (e.g. fries, pasta, noodles, potatoes, rice). Put parsley springs on top for added decoration.

Notes: When picking fresh mushrooms, look carefully at signs of rotting. Otherwise, canned mushrooms should be good enough. Similarly, buy beef online only from those meat retailers that you trust. Make sure that the seller has adequate government certification in order to legally sell meat products to households. Eat the stroganoff while it is hot!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Oral-B ProfessionalCare Smart Series 5000 with SmartGuide

Hello!  I was selected (lucky!) to try out the Oral-B ProfessionalCare SmartSeries 5000 with SmartGuide power toothbrush.  Here is a quick video I put together telling you about the features that it has to offer.  I will post a follow up video in a few weeks and let you know how I feel about it after using it more.

Oral-B® ProfessionalCare SmartSeries® 5000 with SmartGuide Fact Sheet

The Oral-B ProfessionalCare SmartSeries 5000 with SmartGuide is Oral-B’s most technologically advanced power toothbrush providing the most advanced cleaning technology for ultimate plaque removal and also features a wireless SmartGuide.
Pressure indicator lights up when brushing too hard.
Cleaning action: Provides 40,000 pulsations and 8,800 oscillations per minute which helps remove up to two times more plaque than a regular manual toothbrush, thus preventing and reversing gingivitis.
Whitening: While the ProfessionalCare SmartSeries 5000 with SmartGuide is gentle on teeth and gums. It also offers outstanding whitening and polishing in 3 weeks.**
Customized brushing modes: Daily Clean, Sensitive, Whitening, Massage and Deep Clean.
Brush head design: Provides a unique clean with the compact, round brush head that surrounds each tooth for a tooth-by-tooth clean. The pressure indicator lights up when you’re brushing too hard.
o Indicator® bristles: Remind you to replace your brush head every 3 months, once they’ve faded halfway.
o Replace brush head alert: Signals when you’re 10 days away from needing a replacement.
o Includes: 1 handle, 1 SmartGuide, 1 Smart Charger, 1 base station, 1 Pro White™ Brush Head with polishing cup that whitens teeth by removing surface stains,1 Oral-B FlossAction® Brush Head which offers outstanding interdental cleaning, and 1 travel case.
Professional wireless timer with quadrant prompt: Every 30 seconds, a brief signal will encourage thorough brushing of all four quadrants of your mouth. At the end of two minutes, a longer signal indicates when the dental expert recommended brushing time period has been reached.
Base station: The ProfessionalCare SmartSeries 5000 can be displayed on your bathroom counter. The base station also features a toothbrush holder with protective cover.
o Also comes with a travel toothbrush case which is designed to protect your brush anywhere you go.
Availability: Oral-B ProfessionalCare SmartSeries 5000 power toothbrush is available at department, retail and specialty stores nationwide at a suggested retail price of $159.99.
Learn More For additional information or to read and write review on the Oral-B ProfessionalCare Smart Series 5000, visit For further information and related products visit the Oral-B Facebook page at
** Via surface stain removal.

“I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour by Dad Central Consulting on behalf of Oral-B and received a product sample to facilitate my review and a promotional item to thank me for taking the time to participate.”