Red Wine Cherry Reduction Sauce

Last night’s dinner was a winner. I don’t even care that we were eating at 11pm again. Let’s pretend it’s European and fashionably late.

We picked up some New York steaks at Costco on Saturday, leading to me looking up steak recipes at work on Monday. A coworker happened to be by my desk and noticed that the Food Network sauce recipe I was reading called for red wine. “You know, that event two weeks ago left us a bunch of half empty bottles of decent red wine. I’ll bring you some to cook with!” Free cooking wine? Yes, please.

The note left with the wine. Thanks jh!

I had never made a wine reduction sauce before, but that didn’t stop me from modifying the recipe to fit what we currently had in the fridge. It called for shallots & we only had onion. They’re basically the same thing, right?

What we used:

  • Oil to coat the pan
  • A small handful of minced onion
  • Half a bottle of red wine
  • Approximately 3 tbs of butter, cubed
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  • Dried cherries!
How to cook it:

Cook the onion in the oil over medium heat until they are translucent. Pour in the wine and bring it all to boil, stirring occasionally, until it reduces by half. Reduce heat to low. Slowly whisk in cubes of butter, enough to make it look glossy & taste right. The salt and pepper are added at this point, followed by the cherries. The sauce can stay heating on a low temperature while the meat is cooking.

The dried cherries are the main difference from the Food Network recipe, and a happy addition. The sauce was a bit sweeter than I wanted at the beginning. The butter and seasonings helped a bit, but then we remembered picking up those cherries this weekend. There’s no better way to fix accidental sweetness than making it intentional!

A steak dinner. Fries not pictured.

While I was busy with the sauce, E was manning the barbeque. Each steak was rubbed with salt, pepper,  and garlic powder before going on the grill. We actually worked together to do the dry rub with me sprinkling on the seasoning and him pressing it in. It made the whole thing a lot more fun & date-like. We also threw on some large mushroom caps after rubbing them with oil, and reheated Monday’s fries in foil over indirect heat. It was all served on a bed of fresh baby spinach.

With the cherries, and steak, and the working together, I would highly recommend this for a Valentine’s Dinner. You know, if you’re in to that sort of thing.

Prepping part of the leftovers.

Did I mention each of these steaks feeds 2 people? The Costco pack of them has four in it. We’re going to be eating delicious beef for days. E left two of the steaks a little rarer than the others so we can reheat them without over-doing it and having the steak get tough. He also chopped up the most seared end so I could take it to work the next day.

Almost has me wanting to make bento boxes.

I haven’t been this excited for lunch in a long time.


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