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Old 09-21-2005, 10:38 AM   #1
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Cooking a Reduction? Need your help!

Hey guys. Last time i cooked steaks i used the leftover marinade of balsamic, red wine, and worcestershire sauce and tried to make a reduction.

It ended up tasting burnt and disgusting.

How do i make a reduction sauce to pour over my steaks?

I will be using worcestershire, red wine, and balsamic vinegar

I'm eating two five oz filet mignons

How much of each should i use?

Thanks in advance.

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Old 09-21-2005, 11:00 AM   #2
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First thought, I'd not use that marinade to make a reduction sauce. Especially if it's good beef. I think it could be salty and overpowering.

But ....

How did you cook your steaks? I seem to recall that you seared them and then finished them in the oven.

How did you make the reduction? In the pan that you cooked the steaks?

If so, the burnt taste is probably because of the high heat used to cook the steaks. This cooking method makes creating a nice pan sauce challenging because you need to use high heat to cook the meat, but using high heat burns some of the fond in the pan. The fond is what gives a pan sauce it's falvor. If it's burned, the sauce will taste burned.

You can just put the marinade into another pan and boil down to reduce. You MUST boil marinades to kill bacteria and make it safe to use as a sauce. But this often makes the sauce salty and rough.

Do you like mushrooms? If so, this makes a nice sauce for steak:

Slice up about a pound of button mushrooms. In a skillet, cook them in butter until they have released their liquid. Off heat, add about 1/4 cup of brandy. Use a match to carefully light the brandy and flambee. Stir the mushrooms, taste, and add worcestershire sauce and balsamic to taste. Start with maybe a teaspoon of each and add more as needed. A T of butter will make the sauce silky.
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Old 09-21-2005, 12:03 PM   #3
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Excellent advice! That's what I'd do.
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Old 09-21-2005, 12:29 PM   #4
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Mylegsbig, remember that when you're making a reduction you're concentrating flavors as well so something like worcestershire might not want to be added until the end. Also, you need to slowly reduce the liquids. Are you boiling it full tilt on high? You should do the reduction in advance then all you have to do is heat it up when you want to eat. If you're trying to do it during or after you cook your steak it's not going to work because of the time constraint. You could make a pan sauce but it won't technically be a reduction. You'll just be deglazing the pan and yeah, the liquid you add will evaporate but that's not a reduction sauce. For a reduction, you need to start off with a large amount of liquid and then simmer it until it lessens considerably and the flavors concentrate.
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Old 09-21-2005, 12:44 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mylegsbig
Hey guys. Last time i cooked steaks i used the leftover marinade of balsamic, red wine, and worcestershire sauce and tried to make a reduction.

It ended up tasting burnt and disgusting.

How do i make a reduction sauce to pour over my steaks?

I will be using worcestershire, red wine, and balsamic vinegar

I'm eating two five oz filet mignons

How much of each should i use?

Thanks in advance.

2 five ounce steaks only really need about 2 to 3 ounces of sauce each.I would recommend a 3-2-1 ratio of red wine,balsamic then worcestershire and a total of about
10 ounces.

Use a SS pan and sear the fillets nicely and remove and place on a sheet pan or other surface and finish the fillets
in the oven.Take some shallots about 2 tbsp and sweat them in a little butter over low-medium heat along with a little crushed garlic until soft.Add a sprig of thyme and then deglaze with the marinade and reduce slowly by half.
Remove the sprig of thyme and off the heat mount the sauce with some whole butter to add viscosity and flavour to the sauce.Season to taste.This sauce goes well with
a steak like fillet.
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Old 09-21-2005, 02:47 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by foodaholic
2 five ounce steaks only really need about 2 to 3 ounces of sauce each.I would recommend a 3-2-1 ratio of red wine,balsamic then worcestershire and a total of about
10 ounces.

Use a SS pan and sear the fillets nicely and remove and place on a sheet pan or other surface and finish the fillets
in the oven.Take some shallots about 2 tbsp and sweat them in a little butter over low-medium heat along with a little crushed garlic until soft.Add a sprig of thyme and then deglaze with the marinade and reduce slowly by half.
Remove the sprig of thyme and off the heat mount the sauce with some whole butter to add viscosity and flavour to the sauce.Season to taste.This sauce goes well with
a steak like fillet.

This is a great suggestion and deals with the issue of the burned fond very nicely.

In your original post, I can;t tell if the marinade is leftover because it wasn't used, or leftover after you took the steaks out of it.

If you have marinated raw meat in the liquid it must be brought to a full rolling boil before you begin to reduce it.

A better solution is to reserve some of the marinade before you soak the meat in it, so that it does not come in contact ever with it. I think you are meaning this by "leftover."
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Old 09-21-2005, 03:01 PM   #7
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second the good advice here!
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Old 09-21-2005, 03:42 PM   #8
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This is genius at work.
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Old 09-21-2005, 07:36 PM   #9
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Guys, the first marinade i used actually contained Balsamic, Beer, and Worcestershire. I didnt use the original searing pan, but a separate sauce pan. I heated it until boiling, then i lowered the temp to around 3-4.

I took my eyes off of it for awhile and came back and it was like congealed and smoking.

thanks for the great advice guys, as always great replies

Cheers
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Old 09-21-2005, 07:50 PM   #10
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Okay guys i am going to make 10 oz.

6oz red wine 2 oz balsamic 2 oz worchester

first im using garlic and butter sauteeing them

Approximately how long will this take to reduce? I want to time this right.

I heard someone say i should cook the reduction first then heat it up to serve later.

will this be ok? Or will it congeal and become ruined?

thank you again.
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