Showing posts with label beef stock. Show all posts
Showing posts with label beef stock. Show all posts

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Rump Steak with Wine-Balsamic Coffee Glaze

Tender rump steak cooked to pink perfection and served with a delicious savory sauce with coffee, red wine, brown sugar and balsamic vinegar, so good you will have to stop yourself from eating the sauce with a spoon.

Coffee adds a wonderful smoky note to any marinade or sauce. Never mind just using it in sweet concoctions. Try it in something savory!
If you’ve been reading along here for a while, you know that I am a lover of coffee.  In fact, coffee has been known to bring out the poet in me, as evidenced by this post back in August of 2012, when I shared the following haiku.

Precious elixir
My good reason for rising
Coffee, always.  Yes!

I love to use it in muffins, like this one, and this one, and this one. Sometimes I just make actual coffee, like this post on how to make your own coffee syrup for the perfect iced latte anytime.

Ah, yes, my love of coffee is well documented. I offer as exhibit F, this birthday greeting, written in coffee beans by my elder daughter who was entrusted with my blog password when she created my lovely header and logo.

The point of this preamble is that you won’t be surprised to learn that my hand shot up when my friend, Jenni Field, of Pastry Chef Online, said that the publisher of a book with coffee recipes was looking for bloggers to review the book and try out the recipes. “Me, me, pick me!” I said, with gaiety and wild abandon, virtually speaking. Happy dance was actual. Because: Coffee!

There was a mix up and the hard copy of my book went missing – cue much sadness and despondency – but then, they sent me a pdf of the book and my world was suddenly better again. Because: Coffee!

While I didn’t get to hold the book in my hands, I did manage to make notes and “bookmark” several recipes I wanted to try. Patricia McCausland-Gallo is the author of Passion for Coffee (<affiliate link) and that passion shines through on each and every page. She tells the story of coffee like a romantic fairytale that came true for the world, starting with the discovery of the effects of eating raw coffee beans on animals, which made the humans take notice, to the roasting and enlarging on their essence through modern times.

The creative recipes use coffee in many imaginative ways, sweet, savory and in between, adding depth and richness, sometimes with just a hint of coffee and other times with a walloping bang that you don’t want to miss.

I can tell you that the coffee ice cream is fabulous and one day I’ll share that recipe as well, but for the book review and introduction of the giveaway, I wanted to jump outside the usual sweet comfort zone and try coffee in a savory dish. It was, in a word, exceptional. The defining factor for me, and one that is often discussed at length at the dining table when I try a new recipe is “Should I make it again?” The answer was a big Yes.

Rump Steak with Wine-Balsamic Coffee Glaze

The original recipe called for flank steak, which I couldn’t locate here so I substituted a similar cut, which worked beautifully. I also used espresso powder in place of the granulated coffee since that’s all the instant coffee I keep in the house.

For the steak:
2 lbs or 930g rump steak
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon freeze-dried or granulated instant coffee (or espresso powder)
1 tablespoon olive oil (I didn’t measure, just drizzled some in.)
1/2 teaspoon salt

For the sauce:
2 teaspoons freeze-dried or granulated instant coffee (or espresso powder)
3/4 cup or 180ml beef stock or broth
1/4 cup or 60ml red wine
1/4 cup or 60ml balsamic vinegar
1/3 cup or about 65g dark brown sugar
Beurre manié

For the beurre manié – to thicken the sauce – instructions here
2 1/2 teaspoons flour
2 1/2 teaspoons butter, softened

Sprinkle the steak with thyme, black pepper and coffee and pop it in a Ziploc bag. Drizzle in the olive oil and give the whole thing a good massage from the outside.

Place in the refrigerator for a couple of hours or overnight to marinate.

About 15-20 minutes before you are ready to cook, remove the steak from the refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature.

Meanwhile, measure the ingredients for your sauce into a large measuring cup and stir well to combine and to dissolve the brown sugar.

Make your beurre manié. (Check out the link in the ingredients list. It's really easy.) Set both aside.

Heat a heavy sauté pan over medium heat. (I used high heat because that’s how my stove works best for searing.) Season the steak with salt and sear for three to four minutes on each side.

Side one.

Side two.
Cover and cook for five more minutes. (I cut this back to two minutes because we like our steak very pink!) Remove from the pan and cover. Rest for 10 minutes before carving.

The microwave cover is very effective for this stage.

While the steak is resting, we can make the sauce. Add the sauce ingredients to the pan and scrape all the lovely browned bits left behind from the steak as you bring the liquid to the boil.

Now add your beurre manié a little at a time, whisking all the while, until it has all been added. Continue to cook the sauce until it thickens.

Add in the juices from the steak plate and whisk again. Try to stop drinking this sauce with a spoon. It’s futile, by the way.

Now slice the steak into thin strips, against the grain of the meat.

Serve with the warm sauce.


Just to give you a taste of other recipes in this wonderful book, here’s a list of some of my favorite Passion for Coffee book tour posts so far:

*Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links to the book, Passion for Coffee. If you buy after clicking on my link, I make some small change from the sale and you are still charged the normal price. Win-win! I received a soft copy of this book for review purposes, with no other personal compensation. All opinions are entirely my own.

Friday, January 31, 2014

Crock Pot French Onion Soup #FeaturedFriday with Momma's Meals

Hours of simmering make this delicious onion soup the perfect bowl of rich stock and silky onions. Topped with melty cheese toast, it will warm your heart as well as your belly. 

Today I am doing something a little bit different around here. I was invited by the adorable Tammi from Momma’s Meals to do a blogger exchange she calls Featured Friday. She chooses a dish from my site and I choose one from hers and we post the results together. It sounded like a lot of fun!  I’ve been reading Tammi’s blog for a while now and her friendly, casual writing style makes every recipe approachable. I especially love the letters she writes to her two sweet children. She’s honest about the challenges of motherhood while still clearly head over heels in love with them both. I chose to make her French onion soup because it’s still a little bit chilly in Dubai, and this soup is one of my favorites. I was almost tempted by her Baked Parmesan Pork Chops and her Honey-Roasted Carrots with Walnuts.  Such lovely dishes.  But I love a good crock pot recipe, so soup it was! I can't wait to see what she has chosen to make of mine!

Ingredients for four or five good bowls
1 purple onion
1 white onion
1 yellow onion
1 large shallot – total weight of oniony things: 1 lb 9 3/4 oz or 730g
5 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons or 30ml balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon brown sugar
3 tablespoons flour
1 can (11.1oz or 330ml or your nearest equivalent size) medium to dark beer  (I only had lager so my soup ended up lighter but still tasty.)
6 1/3 cups or 1.5 liters beef stock
Leaves from 2 sprigs fresh thyme (plus some extra for garnish)
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
Few good grinds of fresh black pepper
Bread – one slice per bowl.  I used slices of baguette but any will do nicely.
Cheese to cover each bread slice. (Pick your favorite, semi-hard to hard) I used a Tomme made from sheep’s milk.

Peel then slice your onions and shallot very thinly. Mince the garlic.

Turn the crock pot to high. Add onions, garlic, sugar, butter and balsamic vinegar.

Cover, and let cook for at least one hour, stirring midway through.

After that hour or so, sprinkle on the flour and give the whole thing a good stir.

Add in the beer, stock, thyme and salt and pepper. Reduce heat to low and cook for eight hours.

Prior to serving, put the broiler or grill on in your oven. Toast your bread slices in the toaster then top with slices of your chosen cheese.

Put the toast on a piece of foil on a baking pan and pop it in the oven. Cook until the cheese is all bubbly and melted. When it’s almost ready, serve your portions out into bowls.

When the cheese toast is ready, lift the pieces off the foil, making sure to scrape up any cheese that melted over the side, and gently lay one on top of each bowl of soup. Garnish with more fresh thyme.


Thanks again for choosing me for this week's Featured Friday, Tammi! It was such fun!