Braised Eye Round Steak with Wild Mushrooms

While in the US eye round is considered a lesser cut of beef it is very popular with our English-speaking cousins in the UK, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa where it is often called braising steak. Granted, because it is so lean, it can be somewhat chewy if handled carelessly but grilled to no more than medium rare or braised slowly for a good long time it is delicious indeed. And furthermore it is very affordable: I buy a full eye of round, about 6 to 7 pounds, in the original cryopak from my local MaineSource where it usually sells for around $2.79 a pound. After trimming what little external fat is on the meat I have a week or more of meals for about $3.oo per pound.

I adapted this recipe from a website in the UK. As a matter of Gallic pride I served it with something a Brit would never eat: garlic mashed potatoes.

Ingredients

2 eye round steaks, about ¾-inch thick or roughly 7 ounces each

1 onion, halved lengthwise and sliced thinly

½ pound assorted exotic mushrooms or ordinary white mushrooms

¼ cup dry sherry

½ cup brown (beef) stock

Olive oil and butter

Salt and pepper

Method

Turn the oven on to 300°. Rinse the mushrooms and slice or chop them coarsely. Heat a cast iron skillet over high heat. Season the meat with salt and pepper. Film the hot skillet with oil and sear the meat for about 2 minutes on each side. Set aside.

Turn the heat down to medium, add a bit more oil and butter to the skillet, and sauté the onions for about five minutes or until softened but not browned. Put the mushrooms in the skillet along with a good pinch of salt. Sauté until the mushrooms give off their moisture, about 5 minutes. Add the sherry and stock stirring to deglaze the pan. Return the steaks to the pan and bury in the mushrooms. Cover and place into the oven for one hour, turning halfway. Uncover for the last 10 minutes or so to concentrate the juices.

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