Tournedos Diane

A classic from another generation of diners (those of the immediate post-war era), this luscious beef dish is a well-liked specialty at Brennan’s, among other places. They bring out three thick disks of filet mignon and prepare them and the sauce at the table. This is not the steak Diane you might find in a classic cookbook, but it is a very good dish. I guarantee you will be getting up every drop of that sauce.

Nouvelle steak Diane.

Nouvelle steak Diane.

  • 2 Tbs. butter (clarified butter preferred)
  • 2 tournedos of beef, about 10 oz. each
  • 1 oz. brandy
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 small white onion, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 3 sprigs fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. black peppercorns
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tsp. lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp. Tabasco soy sauce (or regular soy sauce, plus three dashes of Tabasco)

1. Heat the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat heat. When the butter starts to bubble, sear the tournedos, letting them stick to the pan before you turn them over to an unseared side, until browned all over. Remove the tournedos and keep warm.

2. Add the brandy to the pan and bring to a boil. Caution: the brandy may flame briefly. Whisk the pan to dissolve the juices as the brandy reduces by about two thirds.

3. Add garlic, onion, celery, parsley, salt and pepper. Saute until the vegetables are tender. Add the wine, Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, and soy sauce. Bring to a low boil and simmer until the sauce is thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon. Strain the sauce and return to the pan.

4. Slice each of the tournedos into four equal slices. Return them to the pan and cook in the sauce for about 30 seconds. Serve with all the sauce that sticks to them, plus a tablespoon more.

Serves four.

5 Readers Commented

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  1. courtney on February 5, 2015

    does anyone know where to get beef wellington in new orleans

    • Tom Fitzmorris on February 5, 2015

      No restaurant serves it as a regular menu item. But if you go to a French restaurant (Chateau du Lac, for instance) and give them a few days’ notice, they will make it for you. Even if they get it perfectly right, you won’t be much impressed. This is a muchly-overrated dish from the past.

      Tastefully yours,
      Tom Fitzmorris

  2. David Gostl on February 5, 2015

    I see mushrooms, potatoes and a carrot in the picture, what gives?

    TOM SEZ: As the caption on the picture says, it shows a nouvelle version of the dish. The recipe is in the old style. Both are good. To see what the recipe is like with mushroom, potatoes and carrots, add mushrooms, potatoes and carrots.

  3. randy on February 5, 2015

    Tom, the mention of Crozier and tournedos in the same article without eluding to Gerard’s Tournedos is near blasphemy.. The sauce was commonly referred to as Tournedos Sauce at The French Table on W. Esp., Met. He would put it on anything you wanted. I’ve not been the same since. We miss you, Gerard.

  4. Ed Saadi on February 5, 2015

    The picture seems to include mushrooms, but not the recipe. I would have included mushrooms even without the picture!