Monday, March 12, 2012

Cooking with Spirits: Scotch Mustard Reduction Sauce

Hello all. This it the first in what I hope will be a more regular series of blogs by Star Liquor. Posted both by myself (Adam) and my coworkers.

I am going to start this renewed effort by sharing a wonderful recipe I learned at the Through the Seasons Cooking School at L'Etoile way back in 2002. The class I took was called red meat and scotch. This class was my first Xmas gift from Jerry as a Star employee and I have probably made it a hundred times over the last ten years.

The original recipe was for beef tenderloin filets but I have found it works very well with pork as well. At times I have substituted bourbon for scotch, this also works well. Any good recipe is just a starting point and only your imagination limits you.

There is no reason to use a fancy single malt for this sauce. A blended scotch will be cheaper and taste just fine. If you are going to use single malt remember that cooking with booze concentrates flavor, so a smoky scotch means a smoky sauce.

When you are at Star Liquor buying your whisky for this dish, A half pint (200ml) equals roughly a cup.

Scotch Mustard Reduction Sauce

6 T unsalted butter
2 shallots pealed and finely diced
1 cup scotch whisky
2 T whole grain mustard
1 cup of demi-glace

In a saute pan over high heat, melt 2 T of butter and sear your meat. Remove meat from pan and pour off any excess fat. Save the brown bits at the bottom of the pan. They are all flavor.

Add the shallots to the pan and brown slightly while stirring. Add the mustard to the pan and cook for about 1 minute while stirring so the mustard coats the shallots.

Remove the pan from the heat and add the scotch.

***Just an aside for safety's sake. When you are cooking with spirits always remember that BOOZE BURNS. Technically booze fumes burn and when you add spirits to a hot pan there are going to be fumes. So turn the burner off before you add the booze. Most of the fumes will dissipate in a minute or two. Even so keep a lid for your pan handy and a fire extinguisher should be in your kitchen too. This stuff is yummy but don't burn your kitchen down for it.***

Bring back the heat and reduce the scotch, mustard, shallot mixture to a thick paste. Add the beef demi-glace and bring to a simmer. Reduce this mixture by about half. Swirl in the remaining butter and serve right away over your meat.