You need a few more perfect sauces in your repertoire and you know it. No matter what you’re making, there’s a sauce out there just waiting to make it better, enhance its natural appeal and make you look like a rock star of a chef. This red wine and fig pan sauce will enhance any protein you drizzle it on. 

This combination of figs and full-bodied red wine is also prepared using the classic method for pan sauce. Because of its sweeter, jammier flavor profile, this is an ideal sauce for pork chops, pork loin, tender cuts of beef or even turkey, which are often served with jammy compotes, or sauces. It’s important to use a rich wine such as a zinfandel.

If you are preparing your meat using a pan-seared or roasting method, then use the fat drippings to replace the oil called for in step one. A tip when making any wine-based sauce — use the wine you’d want to drink. Lesser quality wines make lesser quality sauces. A pat of butter is added once the sauce is completed to add creaminess and a high gloss. This traditional finishing step is called monter au beurre or “mounting with butter” and adds a velvety sheen and texture to the sauce.

Reprinted with permission from The Art of the Perfect Sauce