Red Wine Sauce (from Giada’s family dinners)
6 Tbsp. cold unsalted butter
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 Tbsp. minced garlic
1 tsp. dried oregano
1/4 cup tomato paste
2 1/2 cups dry red wine
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a large, heavy saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and saute until tender, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and oregano and saute until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in the tomato paste and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Whisk in the wine. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sauce reduces by half, about 10 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat. Whisk in the remaining 4 tablespoons of butter. Strain the sauce into a bowl, pressing the solids to extract as much liquid as possible. Discard the solids in the strainer. Season the sauce to taste with salt and pepper. Keep warm and drizzle over your ready steak.
Mini Herbed Pommes Anna (from Bon Appetit magazine)
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
12-24 small tender thyme sprigs plus 2 tsp. coarsely chopped leaves
1 garlic clove, minced
1 3/4 lbs. small waxy potatoes (such as Yukon Gold or German Butterball), each slightly larger than a golf ball
2 tsp. kosher salt
freshly ground pepper
Need: A standard 12 cup muffin pan and a mandoline
Preheat oven to 350. Melt better in a small saucepan over medium heat. Brush muffin cups all over with butter. Line bottoms with parchment-paper rounds. Arrange 1-2 small thyme sprigs in center of each round. Drizzle 1/2 tsp. butter into bottom of each cup.
Add chopped thyme and garlic to remaining butter in saucepan. Stir over medium-low heat until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat.
Using mandoline, slice potatoes crosswise into very thin rounds (less than 1/16 inch thick), placing them in a large bowl as you work. Pour herb butter over and season with salt and pepper; toss to coat well.
Divide potato slices amoung muffin cups, layering overlapping slices to create a circular pattern. Lightly press center of each to make compact. Drizzle remaining butter and seasoning from bowl over.
Cover muffin pan tightly with foil and place on a baking sheet. Bake until potatoes can be pierced easily with the top of a knife, about 35 minutes. Remove foil; invert a rimmed baking sheet over pan. Turn, lightly tapping on counter, releasing potatoes onto sheet. Rearrange any slices that may have fallen out. Using a metal spatula, carefully turn cakes, thyme sprigs facing down. Discard parchment.
Increase heat to 425. Uncover cakes if needed. Bake until bottoms and edges are golden and crispy, 25-30 minutes.
Carefully turn cakes, thyme sprigs facing up.
Wine served: 2000 Chateau Latour-Martillac Grand Cru Classe De Graves (details in Wine Review section)