Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Asparagus and Steak Diane

Saturday evening, I was covered in drywall dust and starving. I also had a fridge full of fresh foods that had been there a little past their prime. And in the freezer, there were two steaks, hard as a rock.

Mushrooms, asparagus, steak.

Unfortunately, the Husband and I have been living without a microwave since we bought and moved into this house. It's tiny and microwaves take up valuable space that could be used for something far prettier. We just left it out of renovation plans. However, that means meats can no longer be dubiously dethawed in a matter of minutes. I tossed our frozen steaks still in their package into the sink and filled it with water.

I cursed my inability to plan ahead.

I stood glumly in the hallway and watched the Husband glue down the first board of the bamboo for back entryway. Work on the house had not gone well and all there was in the fridge to make up for it was a frozen hunk of cheap steak.

Half an hour later, as the evening crept on, I decided to make the best of it. I took some onions. I took the mushrooms that were tucked in the dark back corner of the fridge. I took a bundle of asparagus from the crisper. I took a bottle of birthday wine. And oh, yes. I made the best of it.

Steak Diane
Adapted from The Joy of Cooking

1 tbsp olive oil
2 steaks of your favourite cut (These are ribeyes. They had very few veins of fat and were kind of tough, so I would definitely recommend something that's a bit more tender. Ribeyes are, apparently, great for slow roasting.)
salt and pepper to taste

2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 large onion, chopped
5 or 6 mushrooms, chopped
1/2 cup beef stock
1 tbsp honey mustard
1 dash Tabasco or other hot sauce
2 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp soy sauce

(After a little research, I realize that my substitutions have made this not a true Steak Diane. Should you wish to make a truer version of Steak Diane, substitute half the broth for brandy, the soy sauce for Worcestershire, the oil for butter and the onions for shallots.)

Season your steaks and cook them in the oil to your liking. I was aiming for medium rare, but being an imperfect and extremely amateur cook, I think I ended up with a full-on medium, especially after the last step. Remove the steaks from the pan and set them aside.

In the pan with the steak juices, add the 2 tbsp of oil and the onions. Cook until the onions are translucent. Meanwhile, chop the mushrooms and add them as you go.

Into the mushroom and onion mix, add the beef stock, the honey mustard, the hot sauce, the lemon juice, and the soy sauce. Bring the mix to a boil and allow to reduce for a few minutes.

As the sauce gets close to the consistency you want, if you're like me and enjoy your food really hot, add the steaks back in to reheat. Alternatively, simply scoop the sauce over the steak and serve without reheating.

Have you checked out the House yet today? I talked about my veggie garden progress over there. One day, those veggies will show up here on a regular basis!

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