Steak Sauces

It might seem like an over simplification, but a good sauce is the key to a good meal. It doesn’t matter how good the meat is, or how perfectly cooked the veg is, without a good sauce the meal can  be a little dry and lifeless.

These are my two favourite, quick and easy recipes, both of which will take  about ten minutes. They also have the advantage that they can be made with ingredients you will normally have in your fridge, or can pick up from any corner shop.

A really quick over view of sauces. The legendary chef  Careme  started with four main sauces, then Escoffier slightly changed it into the five Mother Sauces we know now.

Bechamel– A white sauce made from roux and milk.

Espagnole – Basic mirepoix and demi-glace,  the base for meat sauces- (Only place i have found  to buy Demi-glace  in the UK is at Waitrose.)

Hollandise– An emulsification of eggs and liquid butter.

Veloute–  A light stock and blond roux.

Tomato– basic mirepoix and tomatoes.

But here are two much easier sauces, both are great with steaks but can go just as well with chicken.

These sauces can easily be made in 10 minutes, whilst the meat is resting.

CREAM, MUSHROOM AND WHISKEY- for two –

IMG_20151017_180921

INGREDIENTS

good pat of butter

1/2 onion

1/2 clove of garlic

150 ml of cream – TOP TIP–  freeze it in the ice cube tray then use as needed

good slug of whiskey ( nice and peaty single malt is best)

100 g of any fresh mushrooms

10 g of dried mushrooms

METHOD

Firstly soak the dried mushrooms in about 25 ml of boiling water.

Chop the onions and garlic as small as you can.

Slice the mushroom as small as possible.

Melt the butter in a hot pan, then add the garlic and onions, stir quickly until translucent (with small dice this will take about 5 minutes), add the mushrooms and fry for a further minute.

Add the water from the dried mushrooms ( be careful not to include the crud at the bottom of the cup) and the whiskey.

Flame it to get rid of the alcohol,  you can just use a lighter if you want to protect your eye brows.

Cook off for about a minute then take off the heat and add the cream until you get a nice pouring consistency.

Salt and pepper to taste.

If you want to be really different add a small block of Danish Blue to the sauce and  stir in.

RED WINE AND MUSHROOM- for two –

IMG_20151017_181008

INGREDIENTS

Good pat of butter

1/2 onion

1/2 clove of garlic

100 g of any fresh mushrooms

10 g of dried mushrooms

200 ml of red wine

Slug of brandy

Tablespoon of red current jelly.

METHOD

Firstly soak the dried mushrooms in about 25 ml of boiling water.

Chop the onions and garlic very small.

Slice the mushroom as small as possible.

Melt the butter in a hot pan, then add the garlic and onions, stir quickly until translucent (with small dice this will take about 5 minutes), add the mushrooms and fry for a further minute.

Add 200 ml of red wine and half a stock cube  ( I use Rioja i love the oak, vanilla taste.)

Rapid boil until reduced by 1/2 and then add the redcurrent jelly,

If the sauce is still a little runny you can thicken with either cornflour or arrowroot. Cornflour will change the colour slightly, arrowroot will keep it nice and vibrant.

Salt and pepper to taste.

Hope you enjoy these.

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