Zweibelrostbraten (Pan-fried Beef with Gravy and Potatoes)

Live from Griechenbeisl, the oldest restaurant in Vienna, Austria!  Chef Mario Schneider prepares his mouth-watering version of the classic pan-fried beef dish, Zweibelrostbraten.


For beef stock reduction:

Make homemade beef stock with beef bones, carrots, celery, leek and onions.  Drain off vegetables and add tomato puree and red wine.  Boil down until reduced by half.  Stir in thyme, rosemary and peppercorns.

For beef:

1 pound boneless beef sirloin, marinated overnight in olive oil, garlic, pepper and rosemary

Coarse sea salt and mixed peppercorns

1/4 cup fresh tarragon leaves 

2 springs rosemary

3 tablespoons butter

Big splash of Cognac

1 cup reduced beef stock

Garnish:  8 small, peeled potatoes, par-boiled and finished in a frying pan with butter and a little olive oil along with carrot strips and baby corn.


If you aren't making your own beef stock, saute 1 chopped onion in butter.  Add 2 cups beef stock with 3 tablespoons tomato puree, 1/2 cup wine and 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper.  Boil until reduced by half.

To prepare meat:  Reserve marinade and trim any fat off meat, place in plastic bag and pound flat.  Fry in skillet with a little  of the marinade.  Season with 1/2 teaspoon each coarse sea salt and ground mixed peppercorns.  Add tarragon, rosemary and butter.  Cook about 5 minutes, turning once.  Add beef stock and cognac (watch out for flames!  If your kitchen isn't appropriate for that, you can splash a big of Cognac on the steak after it's been plated).

Cut steak into two pieces and place on two dinner plates.  Add cooked potatoes.  Strain gravy over the top.  Garnish with other vegetables and a rosemary sprig.  Serves 2.  Note:  Traditionally, this dish is served topped with crispy onions.  Slice onions in thin rings, toss in flour seasoned with paprika and deep fry in vegetable oil.