A true French classic, this incredible recipe is perfect for a romantic meal for two or if you really want to push the boat out for entertaining friends at a dinner party.
- 2 sirloin Steaks
- 3 shallots, finely sliced
- 2 cloves of garlic, finely sliced
- 150g small, white button mushrooms, finely sliced
- 50g knob of unsalted butter
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 50g brandy
- a healthy glop of Worcestershire sauce
- 250g whipping cream
Remove two sirloin steaks from the fridge an hour or two before you need to cook so they’re at room temperature. Salt them the moment they come out of the fridge. I’m a huge fan of early salting.
Finely slice 3 shallots, 2 cloves of garlic and 150g of small white button mushrooms. Make piles of each on a plate. On the same plate put a 50g knob of unsalted butter, a tablespoon loaded with Dijon mustard, 50g of brandy in a small shot glass, an open bottle of Worcestershire sauce and 250g of whipping cream in a small glass or bowl.
You’ll need a large frying pan (anything but non-stick) that you can get very hot. Steaks seared at sufficient temperatures don’t stick, but if you’re worried, wipe around the bottom of your pan with a piece of kitchen paper and a little veg oil (we’re actually trying to build up a bit of gungy stickiness to ‘deglaze’).
The only other tool you’ll need is something with which you can flip the steaks, stir and scrape up the sauce. Have two plates warming in the oven. Put the pan on to heat up and take a good long look at your arrangement.
The actual process of cooking is going to be over in minutes, but there’s going to be no time to get something you’ve forgotten.
1. Steaks into the pan. They should sizzle a lot. Flip after a minute. You should be looking at a good crusty coat. Flip again after another minute. Use your favoured method for testing doneness: a probe thermometer reading 56.6°C is the best test of medium rare, but a more traditional method is to watch for tiny jewels of red juice appearing on the top cooked surface after flipping. Lift out your steaks and reduce the heat a little.
2. Throw in the shallots and allow them to soften and clarify, then add the butter (the pan will have cooled a little, so it won’t burn) and the mushrooms and garlic. Cook until the mushrooms are soft and just beginning to colour a little at the edges.
3. Raise the heat under the pan to full again and throw in the mustard, a healthy glop of Worcestershire sauce and the brandy. Stir vigorously, scraping up all the gunge from the bottom of the pan. If you wish, you can tilt the pan slightly over the gas to get a big flare of impressive flame.
4. Once the alcohol has largely bubbled off (you’ll be able to tell by the smell), add the cream, allow it to bubble and reduce by about a third. Pour the sauce over the rested steaks and serve.