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A mushroom sauce without the fat

The deeply flavored port mushroom sauce in this recipe is reminiscent of a classic bordelaise sauce but is made in a fraction of the time. It's practically fat-free, and it's versatile. Try it with lamb, venison or pork besides the beef called for here.

The recipe, which the editors say garnered the highest rating in the test kitchens of Cooking Light magazine, is included in their all-recipe special cookbook edition, The Best of Cooking Light 2, which hit the newsstands during March at $9.95 paperback.

Editor Ellen Carroll explains in her introduction that the 118 recipes that make up the collection were chosen for their excellence by magazine testers and staffers, who also took readers' feedback into account.

Pepper Steak with Port Mushroom Sauce

Port Mushroom Sauce:

1{ cups sliced shiitake mushroom caps (about 3{ ounces)

1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

cup port or other sweet red wine

\ cup minced shallots

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1 cup beef broth

2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon tomato paste

[ teaspoon dried rosemary

{ teaspoon Dijon mustard

Combine mushrooms and flour in a bowl; toss.

Combine the wine, shallots and balsamic vinegar in a medium skillet. Bring to a boil; cook until thick (about 3 minutes).

Reduce heat to medium. Add broth, Worcestershire sauce, tomato paste and rosemary; cook 1 minute. Add mushroom mixture; cook 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in mustard. Set aside and keep warm.

Makes about 1 cup, 4 servings. Per serving: 69 calories, .2 gm fat, 3.8 gm protein, 8.4 gm carbohydrates, .5 gm fiber, 0 cholesterol, 367 mg sodium.

Pepper Steak:

4 4-ounce beef tenderloin steaks (about 1 inch thick)

1 tablespoon black peppercorns, crushed

{ teaspoon kosher salt

Sprinkle steaks with peppercorns and salt. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add steaks; cook for 3 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. Serve with Port Mushroom Sauce.

Makes 4 servings. Per serving with sauce: 241 calories, 7.7 gm fat (3 gm saturated fat), 27.5 gm protein, 9.4 gm carbohydrates, 1 gm fiber, 70 mg cholesterol, 722 mg sodium.

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