This decadent rib-eye recipe featuring a Northern Michigan morel sauce will have you savoring spring. The recipe is by Ruth Mossok Johnston, author of the cookbook The Art of Cooking Morels. Find more of her remarkable recipes here.

Rib-Eye Steaks with Red Zin-Morel Sauce

Serves 4


  • 1½-2 ounces dried morels, brushed, reconstituted and drained (at least 1 cup liquid reserved, divided)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 boneless rib-eye steaks (1/2-inch thick) preferably piedmontese beef or bison, rinsed in cool water and patted dry with paper toweling
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 ½ cups red zinfandel (Note: the better the wine, the better the sauce)
  • ½ cup reserved morel liquid
  • 2 ½ teaspoons ponzu (or citrus-flavored soy sauce)
  • 4 tablespoons butter substitute
  • 4 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary


  1. In a large nonstick sauté pan, add reconstituted morels and ½ cup of reserved liquid; cook over medium-high heat for 6-8 minutes (adding more liquid if necessary during cooking process); stirring frequently. When morels have absorbed all liquid, remove from heat and cool slightly; place in a bowl. Cut the morels in half lengthwise (or if very small, keep them whole); set aside.
  2. In a 12-inch nonstick sauté pan or heavy skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat until oil appears to shimmer; sauté the rib eyes (don’t crowd pan; do in shifts as necessary) about 3 ½ minutes each side for medium-rare (or cook to desired doneness—if cooking bison, keep it medium-rare). Note: Turn steaks only once.
  3. Repeat with remaining steaks. Transfer to a platter and cover with aluminum foil to hold temperature.There should not be much oil left; if more than a teaspoon or two, remove excess oil but not the brown pan bits. In the same pan, sauté garlic over medium heat until light brown, about 1 minute. Add wine and bring to a boil, stirring constantly and scraping the bottom of the pan until liquid is reduced by half, about 3 minutes. Add morel liquid, ponzu and any other juice collected from the steak platter; reboil until reduced slightly. Reduce the heat to medium-low and whisk in the butter substitute and rosemary; add morels. Divide the wine sauce and morels equally and spoon over each steak.

Find more Northern Michigan morel dishes in MyNorth’s recipe guide!

More Northern Michigan Food & Drink

Photo(s) by Todd Zawistowski