Every so often I go back and make an old classic recipe. I believe that the classics are remembered for good reason–usually great flavor! Luckily, at the end of my April “eat from the pantry” challenge, I had all the ingredients for Steak Diane, a steak entree with a flavorful mushroom brandy sauce, that is sometimes flamed tableside.
I still remember eating restaurant dinners featuring Steak Diane when I was growing up. My parents had “date night” every Friday and once in awhile I’d get invited along. One regular destination was the Ulao Inn, owned by a man who emigrated from Liechtenstein and told us many stories of his homeland. The Steak Diane is purely American, however, arising in the flambé frenzy of the 30s and 40s, and still tasty today!
My recipe is based on Emeril’s with a few modifications for what I had on hand. Since the grass-fed beef quarters that I buy typically have no tenderloin and lots of sirloin, that was my biggest substitution. The sirloin was nicely tender, even if it was less perfectly shaped than Emeril’s tenderloin medallions.
I hadn’t flamed anything in a number of years, so I was a little intimidated but it went fine. I poured the brandy into the pan, let it get hot, tipped it away from me, then set it alight with a long handled lighter. I always make sure to pull my hair back when I do this! The dish was so popular with my family I had to wonder what other classics I am missing,
If you have any favorites, send the suggestions my way!
- 16 oz filet sirloin (or cut of your choice), cut in medallions and pounded thin
- 1/2 t salt
- 1/4 t freshly ground black pepper
- 1 T unsalted butter
- 4 t minced shallots
- 1 t minced garlic
- 1 c sliced mushrooms
- 1/4 c Cognac or brandy
- 2 t Dijon mustard
- 1/4 c heavy cream
- 1/4 c reduced beef stock
- 2 t Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon minced parsley leaves
- Season the beef medallions on both sides with the salt and pepper. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the meat and cook for 45 seconds on the first side. Turn and cook for 45 seconds on the second side. Place the meat on a plate and set in a 170F oven to keep warm.
- Add the shallots and garlic and cook, stirring, a minute or two. Add the mushrooms to the pan and cook, stirring, until soft.
- Tilt the pan towards you and add the brandy. Tip the pan away from you and ignite the brandy vapor with a long handled lighter or match. (Alternatively, remove the pan from the heat to ignite, and then return to the heat.) When the flame has burned out, add the mustard, cream, beef stock and Worcestershire sauce and stir to combine. Return to a simmer. Add the meat and any accumulated juices to the pan and turn the meat to coat with the sauce. Continue cooking to desired doneness (remembering that the FDA, would want me to warn you that undercooked meat may be hazardous to your health), then stir in parsley.
- Divide meat between serving plates and top with sauce. Enjoy!