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Love for our dads

Steak au poivre is French for pepper steak. It is a classic French dish and traditionally uses filet mignon, but any high quality cut of beef you prefer is fine to use. I served this on Father’s Day for my own wonderful father, Gene Otter, and my husband and the wonderful father to our children, Dave. Those two dads prefer the manlier bone-in ribeye to the filet, so that is what I used. The peppercorns form a crust on the steak and make a wonderful contrast to the rich and creamy brandy sauce that accompanies it. In France, common side dishes are mashed potatoes or pommes frites (French fries), but we went with another French classic, a wild mushroom tart (tomorrow’s recipe) and our house favorite, Parmesan asparagus. Good stuff all the way around!

Steak au Poivre

4 (1-inch-thick) bone-in ribeye steaks
1 tablespoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons whole black peppercorns
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup peeled and finely minced shallots
1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter, divided in half
1/2 cup Cognac or other brandy
3/4 cup heavy cream

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

Pat steaks dry and season both sides with salt.

Coarsely crush peppercorns in a mortar and pestle or in a sealed zip-lock bag with a meat pounder or with the bottom of a heavy skillet, then press crushed pepper evenly onto both sides of steaks.

Heat a large heavy skillet over medium high heat until hot, then add oil, swirling skillet, and sauté the steaks in 2 batches, turning over only once, about 5 minutes per side for medium-rare. Transfer steaks to a baking sheet and keep warm in the preheated oven while making the sauce.

Pour off fat from skillet, then add shallots and 2 tablespoons of the butter to skillet and cook over meduim low heat, stirring and scraping up brown bits (the fond), until the shallots are well-browned, 3 to 5 minutes.

Add Cognac using extreme caution; it may ignite (if it does, immediately turn off flame and remove from heat, until flames subside) and boil, stirring, until liquid is reduced to a glaze, about 3 minutes. Add cream and any meat juices accumulated on the baking sheet and simmer the sauce, stirring occasionally, until reduced by half, anther 3 minutes, or so. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and cook over low heat, whisking, until butter is incorporated. Pour sauce over steaks and serve immediately.

Serves 4


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4 comments

1 Sloane { 06.24.10 at 3:15 PM }

This dinner was wonderful! Winning the game of Hearts was even better!

2 Linda Hopkins { 06.24.10 at 4:49 PM }

And, I’m so happy you won (well, if I couldn’t anyhow!) !!! Love you!

3 Kelly { 06.27.10 at 11:17 AM }

This was a huge hit! Kevin (first time ever) said it was better than his mothers! Thanks Linda for making me Martha!!! : )

4 Linda Hopkins { 06.27.10 at 12:57 PM }

Kelly, so happy to hear that! Love and kisses to you, Kevin, and the boys.

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