What is Steak Diane?

Diane Goettel
Diane Goettel
Steak Diane is often served with french fries.
Steak Diane is often served with french fries.

Steak Diane is a beef dish that is best known for the way in which it is served. One of the main attractions of the dish is the fact that it is commonly prepared right at the table prior to serving. For this reason, steak Diane is often a performance in addition to an entree. The performance culminates at the end when the steak is lit on fire. The steak is first treated with brandy, which serves as an edible fuel for the fire.

Prior to being lit on fire, steak Diane is first treated with brandy.
Prior to being lit on fire, steak Diane is first treated with brandy.

Prior to being set on fire. Steak Diane is seasoned with a garlic and pepper rub. The steak is usually a cut of beef tenderloin. After being seasoned, the steak is fried in butter. This part of the preparation happens at the table although the steak may have been pre-seasoned with the pepper and garlic.

The sauce that accompanies this dish is usually made primarily with the juices that are left in the pan after the steak is removed. A few ingredients are often added to the juices to increase the flavor of the sauce. Common ingredients in steak Diane sauce are cream, butter, beef stock, shallots, and sometimes also Worcestershire sauce. Sometimes mushrooms are added to the sauce as well, giving it an earthy flavor.

Steak Diane is normally prepared at the table before serving.
Steak Diane is normally prepared at the table before serving.

While there are a number of kinds of restaurants that serve steak Diane, it is most commonly served in steakhouses. Whether the restaurant is a steakhouse or simply a gourmet restaurant, the dish is usually served in an upscale eating establishment, which has the sort of special equipment necessary to cook and serve food table side.

Like many other beef dishes, steak Diane is quite often accompanied by a starch and a vegetable. Common starches include potato dishes such as a baked potato, potatoes au gratin, mashed potatoes, or even french fries. The vegetables that are served with the steak are usually green vegetables such as broccoli, spinach, asparagus, green beans, or peas.

Mashed potatoes are a common side dish served with Steak Diane.
Mashed potatoes are a common side dish served with Steak Diane.

Steak Diane was especially popular in the 1970s and was one of the most common fine dining menu items during that decade. In more recent decades, the dish has been less popular and is not found as commonly on menus, even in steakhouses. It may be making a comeback, however, as some very popular chefs have featured it on their television cooking shows. Such chefs include the famous Emeril Lagasse, Gordon Ramsay, and Paula Deen.

Diane Goettel
Diane Goettel

In addition to her work as a freelance writer for , Diane is the executive editor of Black Lawrence Press, an independent publishing company based in upstate New York. She has also edited several anthologies, the e-newsletter Sapling, and The Adirondack Review. Diane has a B.A. from Sarah Lawrence College and an M.A. from Brooklyn College.

Diane Goettel
Diane Goettel

In addition to her work as a freelance writer for , Diane is the executive editor of Black Lawrence Press, an independent publishing company based in upstate New York. She has also edited several anthologies, the e-newsletter Sapling, and The Adirondack Review. Diane has a B.A. from Sarah Lawrence College and an M.A. from Brooklyn College.

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    • Steak Diane is often served with french fries.
      By: Viktor
      Steak Diane is often served with french fries.
    • Prior to being lit on fire, steak Diane is first treated with brandy.
      By: Gresei
      Prior to being lit on fire, steak Diane is first treated with brandy.
    • Steak Diane is normally prepared at the table before serving.
      By: Brent Hofacker
      Steak Diane is normally prepared at the table before serving.
    • Mashed potatoes are a common side dish served with Steak Diane.
      By: Joe Gough
      Mashed potatoes are a common side dish served with Steak Diane.