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Steak Medallions in a Thyme Scented Red Wine Reduction with Wild Mushroom Risotto

Well, this is exciting. Now officially official (meaning I bought myself a domain and email address), I have a website. Updating it for most likely a total of zero followers, this seems a less logical impulse buy than new stilettos.

Last night's meal did not include any raviolis, but here in Brooklyn it was about twenty degrees outside. Trekking through what seems like neverending snowfall now covered with ice in the pitch dark, I decided that our best bet to warm up the house should include red meat and hearty mushrooms.

After picking up some grass-fed filet, bluefoot, woodear and chanterelle mushrooms, along with a few other choice wintery plant offerings, it was time to take the dog for a quick spin around the block, peel off my salt-crusted boots, three pairs of socks and then warm up the kitchen with a cocktail or two.

Here's how it all went down after that:

Frank came home and took his usual front row seat at the counter, alternating between drying dishes and filling me in on current events (I have a low tolerance for CNN but a high interest in knowing what's what).

Meanwhile, I started on the reduction - about a cup* of red wine in my little copper saucepan with a few sprigs of thyme, and then after it reduced in half, I added a bunch** of balsamic vinaigrette, a little honey, sugar, a dot of butter and salt and pepper (from here until eternity, assume salt and pepper goes into every layer of any dish).

The beef was seasoned and sliced into medallions, then seared on high heat in olive oil for about thirty seconds on each side, cooked rare, because I like steak to taste like steak, and not a flavorless rubber ball. Steak set aside to rest, I added a bit of white wine to deglaze the pan, then butter and the arborio rice to toast, with finely diced shallot and a few sprigs of sage to scent the whole room. After a few gradual pours of white wine and water, it was covered until the rice became fluffy and creamy. Added in was freshly grated parmigiano, butter, the mushrooms, and a handful of fava beans.

By then it was time to plate. The reduction was now a gorgeous, shiny syrup to be ribboned over the medallions, and with a final round of salt and pepper, I stirred in chopped parsley and thyme to the risotto.

Dinner was delish, and the perfect complement was my riff on smitten kitchen's blood orange and fennel salad, an incredibly simple and flavorful mix of the two dressed by other citrusy friends.

No raviolis, but this was winter sunshine on a plate. Buon Appetito!

*Measurements are more eyeball, less exact.


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