The nerves up in my parent’s house are a bit off kilter. One of my brother’s is getting married on Sunday, in Hawaii, and there is still a whole lot of planning and packing to do.
While I’m mentally organizing and scheduling posts, among developing interest in packing, my mother on the other hand is moving around like an uncontrollable maniac trying to make a formal sit down dinner. Yes, those are nice and we do them quite often. But, when there are about 20 things to check off the “to do” list in less than 48 hours, dinner for 6 just doesn’t seem so feasible.
Theirs is a Cuban home after all, so my mother will make sure we eat well and in our customary fashion. No matter what is going on. Earlier today she picked up 8 really great looking top sirloins. She was going to simply pan sear them, when my father suggested grilling them outside. It’d been raining all day, so that was not happening. I enter the kitchen and offered to make this super simple yet sophisticated wine reduction sauce to go over the sirloin.
Everyone but my meatless sister was game. Well, and my other brother (not the one getting married). Those two wanted the basic pan seared steak and a back up chicken breast.
And, so as it goes in this house, mom seasoned and seared the steaks while I made the sauce. Mami was also making arroz congri (black beans & rice cooked together to make a dark brown/grayish looking rice), which gave me time to really reduce the wine.
I used a mid-ranged cab sauvignon.
I made this sauce for my parents last week and both loved it. That made it easy for me to get away with taking longer than they all wanted. These things take time, you know. Boil, whisk, reduce heat, whisk, etc….
The sauce is robust in flavor and aroma. It’s simple. I snatched 3 sprigs from the fresh rosemary they have in the garden, which you can see here. That added a really nice element without overpowering the mushrooms, which augmented the meatiness to the tender steak.
And the wine; well, what can you say about wine? Everything is better with wine!
This recipe is a straight up made up one, with no point of reference or prior making. I simply added ingredients I knew would work well together. The only challenge was ensuring it was a sauce thick enough my parents would actually enjoy with their steak. Thick tomato sauces rule around here, so anything with less substance can be tricky.
Dinner chatter involved airport arrival time, me opting not to eat my mother’s best rice so that I can fit into my dress on Sunday and my sister borderline insulting me by calling my fine sauce, “drunken mushrooms”!
Dinner happened so fast, and I was already being criticized for wanting to take pictures of everything that I wasn’t able to plate my meal to photograph the whole experience for you. I did the get sauce, however.
Here’s to you making an easy wine reduction sauce. Try it and let me know if you like it. What would you add or do differently?
UPDATE: I’ve modified the recipe and shared it a new post in this link. Both are great but one may appeal to your palate or for your cooking needs.
- 16 oz. portobello mushrooms, sliced
- 3 cups of good red wine
- 2 cap fulls red wine vinegar
- 1 bay leaf
- 1.5-2 tsp. sugar
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp. salt, parted
- black pepper to taste
Wash and pat dry mushroom. In non-stick 10" skillet, heat olive oil and add mushrooms and bay leaf. Add pinch of salt to mushrooms and cook them on medium heat. Cook mushrooms, stirring slowly for 5 minutes or until semi-cooked. In separate sauce pan, add wine, remaining salt, pepper and bring to a boil. Whisk constantly. Stir in mushrooms. Whisk in sugar and red wine vinegar. Add rosemary sprigs. Reduce heat to low and cook for an additional 30 minutes until sauce has reduced to 2 cups or wine has thickened up to semi-thick sauce. Remove from heat.
To serve, pour over steaks or make liquid bed on individual plate and place steak on top.