As a follow up to JW’s call for menu ideas, here’s the wine dinner I was referring to. We grouped up with about 6 guys to pool our wine/food resources together and this is what we came up with. To drink like that at a restaurant would cost you so much you’d have to sell a child/refinance your house/get a second night job/donate a kidney. You get the point. The reason I put the picture large is so you can read the labels:
1978 Diamond Creek Red Rock Terrace blend
1988 Pahlmeyer Bourdeaux-style blend
1999 Bedford Thompson Cab Franc
2005 Telegraphe CDP “La Crau”
2009 Rasteau CDR Villages
2006 Royal Tokaji 5 Puttonyos Hungarian dessert wine
I can’t think of much else to pair with this assortment other than bistro-style hanger steak, grilled root veg, and a dirt simple salad. In this case, the meal must not ruin the wine.
We’ve been here before, right? Trim the hanger steaks by cutting out the central tendons. Don’t throw it away, though.
If you cut the scraps up into small pieces, and brown them on high heat, you’ll have a great sauce base. From there, sautee shallots and mushrooms on medium heat. If they start to get too brown, they’ll get bitter, add white wine vinegar and reduce until pretty dry. Add chicken stock and reduce. A little butter, and corn starch if it gets too salty, and boom, there’s your pan sauce. You want a consistency that coats the back of a spoon.
When you get ready to cook the steak, salt early, and bring to room temp. Heat oil/butter and add some herbs to infuse it.
The faster and more often you flip, the more deeply it will brown while not overcooking in the middle. As soon as it just starts to release a reddish liquid, it’s pretty much done. Remember with hanger you want more medium than rare.
A little sauteed mushrooms and onions won’t hurt either.