Makes 4 servings. Difficulty
4 boneless beef top-loin steaks Salt and freshly ground black pepper 1 Tablespoon olive oil 2 shallots, minced 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter 4 oz. shiitake mushrooms 1/2 cup Cognac 3/4 cup heavy cream Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 200°F.
Season the steaks on both sides with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Heat a 12 inch heavy skillet over medium high heat. When hot add the oil. Swirl the oil around the pan and then add the steaks; cook the steaks in two batches, turning once, about 6 minutes per batch for medium rare. Transfer the steaks to a heatproof platter and keep warm in the oven.
Pour off the fat from the skillet. Add the shallots and 1-1/2 tablespoons butter; cook over medium low heat, stirring to scrape up browned bits on the bottom of the pan, for about 1 minute. Add the shiitakes and continue to cook until the shallots are browned and the mushrooms are tender.
Carefully add the Cognac to the pan (it may ignite so use caution) and boil, stirring, until the liquid is reduced to a glaze, about 2-3 minutes. Add the cream and any accumulated meat juices from the platter in the oven. Bring back to a boil and cook, stirring occasionally, until reduced by half, about 3-5 minutes. Add the remaining 1-1/2 tablespoons butter and cook over low heat, stirring, until the butter is incorporated. Adjust seasonings to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Serve sauce over steaks.