1/2 Cup Milk
7 Tablespoons Instant Potato Flakes (do not use potato granules--they give an 'off' flavor)
1 pound 90% Lean Ground Beef
4 Tablespoons Butter, divided
1 Onion, quartered and sliced thin (use a mandoline if you have one)
1 pound White Mushrooms, sliced thin (I only use 1/4-pound, if I even use them. I abhor mushrooms)
1 Tablespoon Tomato Paste
2 Tablespoons Flour
1-3/4 Cups Beef Broth
1/4 Cup Ruby Port or dry Sherry
Whisk Milk and Potato Flakes in a large bowl. Add Beef, 1/2 teaspoon Salt, and 1/2 teaspoon Pepper and knead until combined. Shape into 4 1/2-inch-thick oval patties (I make 6 patties) and transfer to parchment-lined plate. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
Melt 1 Tablespoon Butter in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Cook patties until well browned, about 5 minutes per side. Transfer to plate, cover and keep warm.
Add Onion and remaining Butter to empty skillet and cook until Onion is softened, about 5 minutes. Add Mushrooms and 1/2-teaspoon Salt and cook until liquid has evaporated, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in Tomato Paste and Flour and cook until browned, about 2 minutes. Slowly stir in Beef Broth and Port and bring to a simmer. Return patties to skillet, cover, and simmer over medium-low heat until cooked through, about 12 to 15 minutes. Season gravy with Salt and Pepper as needed. Serve with Mashed Potatoes, Green Peas, and a glass of Milk for a home cooked diner-style 'blue plate special'.
"Who can find a virtuous woman?
For her price is far above rubies.
The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her,
so that he shall have no need of spoil.
She will do him good, and not evil,
all the days of her life."
This recipe is from Cook's Country, October-November 2007. The magazine states that "Dr. James Henry Salisbury (1823-1905) was one of America's earliest proponents of a high-protein, low-carbohydrate diet. His notion that diet could greatly affect overall wellness was revolutionary at the time. In addition to advocating a diet of lean ground beef and coffee for Civil War soldiers, Dr. Salisbury also believed that vegetables and starches were unhealthy and caused disease."
I have really enjoyed Cook's Country magazine. If you're looking for a cooking magazine with no advertising (and I am finding that more and more of the advertisement in magazines is so repulsive that I don't even want the magazine in the house!), I highly recommend this magazine. I appreciate the time that is given to researching each recipe, too--the details that the kitchen staff share certainly help me to understand the mechanics of the recipe: how it works and why. My family just agrees that everything tastes delicious.