Dusting Off an Oldie but a Goodie!

I’m gonna save you a few bucks here—you can thank me later. Classically made with filet mignon, this version of Steak Diane uses less pricey flank steak. The beefier nature of the cut holds its own against a bold sauce featuring sherry, Cognac, Worcestershire sauce, and herbs. What’s not to like here?

It’s been widely agreed that New York City appears to be the source of Steak Diane’s genesis. But when and where it actually evolved has as many viewpoints as it does recipe variations. One thing is for sure, in it’s infancy, Steak Diane was flambéed table-side making it all the rage at NYC high-style establishments in the 50’s and early 60’s; but went out of fashion and was considered a has-been by the 1980’s.

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Steak Diane is similar to steak au poivre, because it is either cut thinly, or pounded thin so that it cooks rapidly with seasonings, then sautéed in butter. A sauce is prepared from the pan juices. The ingredients vary from recipe to recipe but may include butter, mushrooms, mustard, shallots, cream, truffles (another pricey item), meat stock, and Worcestershire sauce. Another money-saving step is to use brandy in place of the more expensive Cognac.

I’ve always thought it odd that when you’re cooking a beef dish, the ingredients list chicken broth rather than beef. What I learned was, even if your dish calls for beef broth, you’ll get a much better flavor if you use chicken broth instead. This is because, despite the fact that there is no minimum protein requirement set by the USDA, most boxed or canned chicken broth contains around 60 parts liquid to 1 part protein, twice as much as in beef broth. Homemade beef broth is plenty flavorful, so this only pertains to the store-bought variety.

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One accompaniment was Roasted Carrots with Blood Orange and Rosemary.

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Our other low-carb side was a cauliflower mash garnished with chives.

This easy meal was not only fabulous tasting, it was also all around low-carb because our accompaniments were Roasted Carrots with Blood Orange and Rosemary, and Cauliflower Mash (both shown above and both of which I will be posting soon.)

While there is no show-stopping flambéing going on with this version of Steak Diane, it is an ideal dinner for two—romantically luxurious and indulgent. Valentine’s Day is just around the corner… just sayin’…

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Ingredients

  • 1 1-1/2-lb. flank steak
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp. peanut or vegetable oil
  • 3 Tbs. finely chopped shallot
  • 3 Tbs. medium sherry, such as amontillado
  • 2 Tbs. Cognac
  • 2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 Tbs. lower-salt chicken broth
  • 2 oz. (4 Tbs.) cold unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
  • 3 Tbs. thinly sliced fresh chives
  • 2 Tbs. finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/2 tsp. fresh lemon juice, more to taste

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Our flank steak weighed in at two pounds and almost didn’t fit the carbon steel skillet.

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After 7 minutes in the 400 degree oven, the steak then rests for 10 minutes before cutting into.

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There was no fat to wipe out before we added the shallots, sherry, Cognac, and Worcestershire sauce to the pan.

Directions

  1. Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 400°F.
  2. Pat the steak dry and season generously with salt and pepper. In an ovenproof heavy-duty 12-inch skillet (preferably cast iron or carbon steel), heat the oil over high heat until shimmering hot, about 2 minutes.
  3. Brown the steak on both sides, about 4 minutes total. Transfer the skillet to the oven and continue to cook until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the meat reads 135°F, about 5 minutes. Transfer the steak to a platter, cover loosely with foil, and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, pour off the fat in the skillet (be careful of the hot handle). Set the skillet over medium heat, add the shallot, sherry, Cognac, and Worcestershire sauce.
  5. Simmer, stirring and scraping the bottom of the pan with a wooden spatula to release any browned bits, until the sauce is reduced by half, 2 to 3 minutes.
  6. Lower the heat to low, add the chicken broth, butter, chives, and parsley and whisk, swirling the pan occasionally, to emulsify the butter; the sauce should look creamy.
  7. Remove from the heat, whisk in the lemon juice and season to taste with salt, pepper, and more lemon juice.
  8. Cut the steak in half with the grain, then slice the meat on the diagonal across the grain into 1/8-inch slices. Serve with the sauce.

Steak recipe by Arlene Jacobs from Fine Cooking

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Lower the heat to low, add the chicken broth, butter, chives, and parsley.

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Whisk the sauce, swirling the pan occasionally to emulsify the butter.

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Remove from the heat, whisk in the lemon juice and season to taste with salt, pepper.

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Cut the steak in half with the grain, then slice the meat on the diagonal across the grain into 1/8-inch slices.

img_9955Arrange the meat on a platter, pour over the juices from the carving board and then spoon on some of the shallot mixture.

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Put the remaining shallot mixture in a small bowl for diners to add more if desired.

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