I used to cook this Italian steak recipe a few years ago, when I was a saute cook and saucier. Bistecca Modena was on my mind lately, because it tasted so good! This steak is prepared in the style of Modena, Italy. Modena is home to opera, Ferrari and traditional cave evaporated balsamic vinegar.I usually allow a plate of food to cool off slightly before taking a few pictures. The day these pictures were taken, the temperature was way below zero outdoors and the indoor temperature was about 50 degrees. I guess that the steam does show that I do not falsely piece a plate of food together just to photograph it, like many food writers do. I cook each recipe only once with no retakes and no second attempts!
A good chef takes pride in seeing steaming hot food delivered to a table. The pictures sure will please a reader who feels the same way.
Salsa di Pomodoro Recipe:
This recipe makes about 4 or 5 portions of sauce!
Heat a pot over medium/medium low heat.
Add about 5 to 6 ounces of olive oil. (The olive oil proportion should be about 1/10 of the volume of the tomatoes.)
Add 8 cloves of finely chopped garlic.
Add 1 handful of finely chopped onion.
Saute till the onions turn clear in color, but do not let the onions brown.
Reduce the temperature to medium low low heat.
Add 1 pinch of crushed dried red pepper.
Add a 28 ounce can of good quality imported Italian crushed plum tomatoes.
Place a 28 ounce can of imported whole Italian plum tomatoes that are packed in their own juices into a mixing bowl.
Hand squeeze and crush the tomatoes, till no big chunks remain.
Add the hand squeezed tomatoes and juices to the pot.
Add 4 pinches of oregano.
Add sea salt and ground black pepper.
Add 1 small handful of finely chopped fresh basil.
Add 2 tablespoons of minced Italian parsley.
Add 1 cup of dry red Italian wine.
Stir the sauce often, till it starts to simmer.
Reduce the temperature to low heat.
Leave the pot uncovered. (Never cover a pot of Italian tomato sauce with a lid, or the sauce will be like stewed tomatoes!)
Slowly simmer the sauce.
Stir the sauce from the bottom up once every 5-7 minutes for 4 hours.
The sauce should be simmering very gently and there should be very little bubbling on the surface.
Scrape the sides of the inside of the pot back into the sauce too. That stuff is full of flavor!
After 4 hours, the flavors will meld and the tomato sauce will have medium thin thin tomato sauce consistency. The excess tomato juices will be reduced into the sauce at this point. The olive oil should be well combined with the tomatoes, because the sauce was stirred often.
It is traditional to run this sauce through a hand turned food mill after it is done cooking. Do this step if you have a food mill handy!
Keep the sauce warm over very low heat or reheat the sauce to order.
Glace Viande Recipe:
Many French chefs say that Italian chefs make rich broths and not stocks. That can be true in some cases. Some Italian chefs do fortify broths with aromatic vegetables. Either way, a rich reduced glace of broth or stock is required for this recipe. If you follow my blog, then the chances are that you may already have portions of glace viande in your freezer!
Place 4 pounds of veal bones, lamb bones, beef bones, pork bones and meat scraps into a roasting pan.
Add 5 ounces of tomato paste.
Add 8 to 10 ounces of rustic un-peeled mirepoix of carrot, celery and onion.
Stir the mixture together.
Roast the mixture in a 350 degree oven, till the bones and vegetables caramelize to a deep brown color. (Stir the ingredients occasionally.)
Place the roasted bones and mirepoix into a stock pot.
Deglaze the roast pan with water and add the jus to the stock pot.
Cover the bones with water and bring to a boil over high heat.
Turn the temperature to medium low heat and simmer for 4 hours.
Add water occasionally to cover the bones.
Strain the stock through a fine sieve.
Discard the bones and vegetables.
Skim off the grease.
Reduce the meat stock by a little more than half.
This is a very rich unseasoned stock that can be frozen in portions for later use.
The glace should be able to thinly coat and glaze the back of a spoon.
When the glace viande is used in recipes, it will be reduced to a slightly thicker glaze to order.
Garlic Kale Recipe:
Sauteed or braised kale is a common accompaniment for entrees in Italy! The garlic kale should be cooked while the steak is cooking, but it can be finished before cooking the steak.
Heat a saute pan over medium heat.
Add 1 splash of olive oil.
Add 2 cloves of thin sliced garlic.
Saute till the garlic becomes golden in color.
Add 1 large handful of chopped green kale.
Add sea salt and black pepper.
Saute the kale for 1 minute.
Add 1 cup of water.
Keep reducing the water in the pan, till the kale becomes cooked al dente.
You may have to add water more than once.
When the kale becomes tender, reduced the water till it is nearly evaporated.
Add 1 small splash of virgin olive oil.
Cook the kale for one minute.
Keep the garlic kale warm on a stove top.
Boil 1/2 of a portion of fettucini pasta, till it becomes al dente.
Cool the pasta under cold running water.
Drain the water off of the pasta.
Set the pasta aside.
Reheat the fettucini by placing it in a strainer and dipping it in a pot of boiling water.
Bistecca Modena Recipe:Trim a 10 to 12 ounce ribeye steak so there is no excess fat. The ribeye should be trimmed, so only the lean "eye section" of the ribeye is served.
Season with sea salt and black pepper.
Heat a saute pan over medium/medium high heat.
Add 1 splash of blended olive oil.
Add the seasoned ribeye steak.
Sear the steak on both sides.
Add two trimmed fresh mushroom caps.
Cook the steak so it is rare to medium rare.
Add 1/2 cup of salsa pomodoro.
Add 1/2 cup of the glace viande.
Add 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar.
Reduce the temperature to medium heat.
Reduce the sauce, till a medium thin sauce is formed.
Bistecca Modena with Fettucini and Garlic Kale:
Place the steak on the plate.
Place the mushroom caps on top of the steak.
Place a small portion al dente cooked fettucini on the plate.
Pour the sauce over the steak and pour some of the sauce over the fettucini pasta.
Place a vegetable of your choice on the plate. I serve mine with braised garlic kale.)
This entree is very tasty! The Modena sauce is well suited for a good ribeye steak. The garlic kale retains its deep green color when cooked. I used white mushrooms in this recipe but if you can get fresh cepes, porcini or truffles, then by all means, use the better mushroom. Ciao Baby! ... Shawna