Wow! These were fantastic. I didn't have star anise, so I used a dash of anise seed and a dash of allspice. I used a full sauce recipe for only half the amount of meat. Served with mashed yukon gold potatoes and these green beans: http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/haricots-verts-vinaigrette-50400000122915/ I was a little concerned about the amount of smoke when you transfer the pan and steak to the oven, but it dies down eventually. Olive oil doesn't have a high smoking point, so I'm wondering if some other oil would be better suited for this cooking technique.
Made beef & sauce to recipe using frozen cherries & two 8oz tenderloins, done to medium rare. Added the juices from the rested steaks to the sauce. Used a bit less milk in the dijon potatoes. Served with steamed green beans and roll-cut carrots. Good Fall supper & the cherry "surprise" was a big hit at the table.
This was good, but not great. I expected more complexity out of this sauce. As a disclaimer I did use 1/2 tsp of five spice in place of the star anise but I can't imagine that that would affect my rating much. I served this with the recommended green beans and smashed potatoes. I would not make this again.
When we added the olive oil, it smoked immediately and caught fire! We tried again using medium high heat. We didn't get the same char as in the photograph, but it still tasted good without burning the house down.
5 star quality!