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Steaks with Blueberry Sauce

January 5, 2007

Steak with Blueberries

I saw this recipe in one of the newly acquired Williams-Sonoma cookbooks, and was instantly intrigued. But it just seemed so summery. There are no blueberries in January! Using frozen was an option, but it just didn’t seem right. After all, this is the time for squash, and beef stew, and casseroles. Not blueberries.

Then the weather in Boston suddenly got summery. Well, relatively summery. I mean, I still had to wear a coat and gloves, but it’s something like 60 degrees out right now, which is pretty damn summery for January. And I figured I might as well run with it, and push the summer envelope by cooking up some blueberries.

Of course, I wasn’t even going to think about trying to find fresh blueberries. It is, after all, still January. And isn’t there something about frozen produce being all extra healthy for you and stuff, because it’s frozen at the peak of freshness, thus holding in all its minerals and good stuff? Something like that. I am not afraid of frozen produce, I’ll just leave it at that.

The recipe called for beef tenderloin medallions, but of course, holding true to my general marketing luck, I couldn’t really find any tenderloin medallions. What I did find was chuck tender steak. I did a little reading up on various cuts of cows, and a little recipe calculation, and it didn’t turn out half bad. Being as it was the first time ever I cooked any steak-type thing, I must say I was pretty pleased with myself. Just look at how pretty they were:

Cooking Steaks

Steak with Blueberry Sauce

  • 2 chuck tender steaks (or beef tenderloin medallions)
  • 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 T. butter
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1 T. minced shallot (about half of a large shallot)
  • 2 T. brandy
  • 3/4 c. frozen blueberries
  • 1/4 c. chicken stock
  • salt and pepper

Mix the flour with a bit of salt and pepper, and dredge the steaks in the flour, coating the top and bottom, and the sides. Melt the oil and butter together in a medium skillet, and saute the steaks until well browned, about 3-4 minutes on each side, depending on how well done you like your meat. 3 minutes per sides resulted in very medium rare meat. Remove the steaks from the pan, and keep them warm in a 150F oven. If you like your steaks more well done, you could turn up the oven to 450F and roast them a bit while you make the sauce.

Add the shallots to the oil and butter and meat juices filled skillet, and saute for about a minute. Deglaze the pan with the brandy (it makes a great hissing sound), and scrape up all the browned meat bits. Add the blueberries, and the chicken stock, and let everything boil, reducing the sauce until it’s thickened. Season it with salt and a bit of pepper. Then take your steaks out of the oven, and drizzle the blueberry sauce stuff over them.

I just made up a box of wild mushroom rice pilaf to go with, but I bet it would also be great with some wild rice, or couscous. The sauce, which surprisingly isn’t really sweet at all, gets all mixed up with the rice, and it’s very, very tasty.

So I didn’t get to use my new grill pan, because I had read that chuck steaks aren’t that great for grilling. And despite the fact that this came from a Healthy Kitchen cookbook, it seems to me that searing steak in butter and oil isn’t really that healthy. But it sure was damned good.

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