FOOD G12 RE­DIS­COV­ER­ING A CLAS­SIC: STEAK DIANE

The Hamilton Spectator - - GO - KATIE WORKMAN

I have been think­ing about steak recipes with pedi­gree and his­tory, such Steak au Poivre, Steak with Sauce Borde­laise and Steak Floren­tine, and the words Steak Diane popped into my brain.

I had no idea what it even was. So I looked it up.

There was noth­ing about the recipes that wouldn’t ap­peal to­day, even though Steak Diane has fallen off the pop­u­lar-steak radar. The sauce con­tains one or more types of wine and/or booze (I saw ev­ery­thing from Madeira to Marsala to sherry to co­gnac and brandy to reg­u­lar red wine) and some spices.

Most Steak Diane recipes con­tained Worces­ter­shire sauce as well, which I am re­dis­cov­er­ing as one of my go-to in­gre­di­ents as the weather gets cooler. Also, some mem­ber of the onion fam­ily (I picked shal­lots) and some herbs, usu­ally sim­ple greens like pars­ley or chives.

The ori­gin of the name is un­clear (it’s pos­si­bly linked to Diana, the Ro­man god­dess of the hunt). Tra­di­tion­ally, the cut of beef used for Steak Diane is very thin (of­ten pounded to be so). I’ll try that some time, but I wanted to see how to pull these flavours onto a big, fat, juicy steak, and I picked a cou­ple of nice, 1-inch-thick strip steaks as my can­vas.

Dur­ing the height of its pop­u­lar­ity, Steak Diane was of­ten flam­béed ta­ble­side when served at fancy restau­rants. I love to wow my fam­ily, but I think they all agree that hav­ing me flambé any­thing ta­ble­side is prob­a­bly not a great idea.

Serve it with roasted pota­toes, mashed pota­toes, or maybe po­tato gratin if you want to go all in, or all out as the case may be.

Hey, if there is ever a mo­ment to go all-some­where it’s when you’re serv­ing up some se­ri­ous steak. Creamed spinach as an­other side? Or maybe just sautéed green beans with a bit of gar­lic — we can show a tiny bit of re­straint.

Strip Steak Diane MAKES 2 SERV­INGS

2 6-ounce 1-inch-thick strip steaks Kosher salt and freshly ground pep­per to taste 1 ta­ble­spoon canola or veg­etable oil 2 tbsp un­salted but­ter ½ cup chopped shal­lots 1 tbsp Di­jon mus­tard 1 tbsp Worces­ter­shire sauce 2 tbsp red wine 2 tbsp brandy or co­gnac 1 or 2 tbsp minced fresh pars­ley

Sea­son the steaks gen­er­ously with salt and pep­per. Heat a large, heavy skil­let (such as cast iron) over medium-high heat and add the oil. When the oil is hot, add the steaks, and sear for about four min­utes on each side, un­til nicely browned on the out­side and cooked to your lik­ing, about 125 de­grees Fahren­heit in­ter­nal tem­per­a­ture for rare, 135 F for medium-rare.

Trans­fer the steaks to a cutting board and tent them with foil. Pour off any re­main­ing fat from the skil­let, but do not clean the skil­let.

Melt the but­ter in the same skil­let over medium-low heat. Sauté the shal­lots for four min­utes, un­til golden brown and ten­der. Add the mus­tard, Worces­ter­shire sauce, red wine and co­gnac (be care­ful, the liquor can ig­nite) and stir, scrap­ing up any lit­tle browned bits from the bot­tom of the pan. Al­low the sauce to re­duce a bit, just one minute, then taste and sea­son as needed. Stir in the pars­ley.

Slice the steaks and trans­fer them to a serv­ing plate, or serve each steak on an in­di­vid­ual plate with the de­sired side dishes. Driz­zle the sauce over the steak and serve.

Per serv­ing: 504 calo­ries (243 from fat); 27 grams fat (10 g sat­u­rated; 0 g trans fats); 150 mil­ligrams choles­terol; 447 mg sodium; 8 g car­bo­hy­drate; 1 g fi­bre; 3 g su­gar; 47 g pro­tein.

LAURA AGRA, THE AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS

Dur­ing the height of its pop­u­lar­ity, Steak Diane was of­ten flam­béed ta­ble­side when served at fancy restau­rants.

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