Whether you’re grilling or pan-searing your steak, what better way to complement all that meaty flavour than with a heaping crown of juicy, earthy mushrooms, made creamy and piquant with a few simple additions? This combo is tasty and classic, always a hit.
Summer is around the corner and we’re into grilling mode (between downpours of rain, that is.) The garden is growing like crazy, and we’re busy trying to keep the deer from feasting on all our new young seedlings. This is the year we’re putting a fence around our garden. We’re done with waking up to find they’ve been in there again having a smorgasbord party in our garden overnight. After a busy day of weed-pulling and fencing, it’s a treat to sit on the deck with a drink while the steak sizzles on the grill.
No matter if you cook your steak over glowing coals, a gas BBQ, or a smoky campfire, or if you use store bought cello-packed mushrooms or foraged, delicate wild morels, a meal of steak and mushrooms is ‘da bomb’!
Kitchen Frau Notes: This dry rub mixture for the steak is simple and tasty. Make up a bigger batch of it to have on hand for summer grilling, or toss the extras into hamburgers, meatballs, soups, stews, or casseroles.
Steak and Mushrooms
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon ground allspice
- ½ teaspoon paprika, mild, hot, or smoked
- 2 steaks, your favourite cut
- 2 teaspoons oil (plus more if pan-frying)
- 1 tablespoon butter or olive oil
- 2 cups fresh mushrooms, any kind (wild or store-bought)
- ½ cup finely chopped onion
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme (or 1½ teaspoons fresh)
- ½ teaspoon paprika
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce (tamari for gluten free)
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon water
- ½ teaspoon cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons sour cream
Prepare the steaks: Stir together the salt, pepper, garlic powder, allspice, and paprika. Rub this seasoning mix all over every surface of the steaks. You may have some left over. (Add it to hamburgers, meatballs, soups, or stews.) Leave the steaks to season, uncovered, at room temperature for at least ½ hour, up to two hours, turning them occasionally.
Prepare the mushrooms: Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Tear the mushrooms into irregular pieces; if using fresh morels, leave the smaller caps whole, and slice the larger caps and all the stems. Add the mushrooms and chopped onions to the oil, and cook until the mushrooms release their juices and then until most of the juices evaporate but the mushrooms are still moist.
Add the garlic, brown sugar, thyme, paprika, and pepper, and cook for 1 minute more. Stir in the soy sauce and balsamic vinegar. Stir together the cornstarch and water in a glass, then pour into the mushrooms. Stir and cook until it starts to bubble. Stir in the sour cream and serve the mushrooms on top of the steaks.
Cook the Steaks: Drizzle each seasoned steak with about 1 teaspoon of oil, then rub it in all over. Grill the steaks to your desired level of done-ness (about 3 – 4 minutes per side for medium rare on a medium heat barbecue, a little longer on the first side than the second side) or pan fry them in a hot cast iron skillet with a tablespoon of oil added (same amount of time). Check the internal temperature with a meat thermometer, if you want to be sure, remembering that the steaks will rise another 5°F in temperature during the resting time.
When the steaks are cooked, set them onto a plate, cover with foil or an inverted bowl, and rest them for 5 minutes to allow the juices to reabsorb into the meat.
Serves 2, but the recipe can easily be scaled up for more.
By Margaret Bose-Johnson
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