Steak Au Poivre

This meal was inspired by a recent post at The Pioneer Woman. Ree prepared an incredible-looking Filet au Poivre that really got to me. I knew almost instantly that it was something that I just had to try.

In short, steak au poivre is a simple steak that is seared, finished in an oven, then served with an incredible pan sauce made from the fond (the tasty brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pan), stock, cognac, and butter.

While I was getting ready to make this I remembered a great cookbook that I don't use nearly often enough -- Anthony Bourdain's Les Halles Cookbook. Based purely on the French-ness of the recipe I thought that he would almost certainly include a recipe for this dish. I was correct.

Ree's recipe sounded great, but so did Bourdain's. He opted for a more traditional approach, but offered variations that Ree included. I decided to merge the two recipes using a flat iron steak. The results were simply incredible.

I can say in all honesty that this was the second best beef that I have ever eaten. Yes, it's really that good. I urge you to try this at your earliest possible convenience.

1 3/4 lb Flat iron steak (USDA choice)
1/4 cup Olive oil
1/4 cup Cognac or brandy (I used brandy)
1/2 cup Heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup Water, hot
8 Tbsp Butter, unsalted
3 Tbsp Black peppercorns, cracked to a medium consistency
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp Beef base (I used Better Than Bouillon)
Kosher salt

Season each side of the steak with about a teaspoon of salt.

Lightly oil both sides of the steak and coat each side with half of the crushed peppercorns.

Note: It will look like too much pepper, but just go with it.

Let the steak sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes.

Preheat your oven to 425º

Heat a large heavy oven-safe pan (I recommend cast iron) over medium-high heat.

Add the remaining oil and half of the butter to the pan.

Sear each side of the steak until it is browned nicely.

Move the pan to the oven and cook for 10 minutes (for medium rare).

Mix the beef base and hot water well in a small bowl and set aside.

Remove the pan from the oven, move the steak to a platter, tent with foil, and let it rest.

Put the pan on a burner at medium heat.

Add the beef base and water mixture and bring just to a boil while scraping the fond (brown bits) from the bottom of the pan.

Add the mustard and cognac/brandy and continue stirring until the mustard is well-incorporated.

Add the remaining butter and heavy cream and stir to combine.

Adjust the seasoning of the sauce with salt to taste.

Reduce the heat and continue cooking the sauce until it coats the back of a spoon.

Slice the steak across the grain to about 1/4" and serve drizzled with the sauce.

I served mine with Yukon gold potatoes and yellow onion wedges that were roasted with olive oil, salt, and pepper.

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Anonymous Perry P. Perkins said...
Well, THAT'S dinner tomorrow night!
Blogger Unknown said...
Perry - Strap yourself in for a flavor explosion. Let me know what you think.
Blogger Kitty said...
Wow! That is absolutley beautiful!
Anonymous hog roast said...
I love this recipe its allways been a favourite of mine I have just never been brave enough to try it myself as the wife cooks most of the time. Just to let you know it turned out a treat
Blogger Sandi D said...
wow honey! Insane meal....better than any I've ever had. Although your buffalo was pretty good too!
Blogger Unknown said...
See folks? She just loves me for my food. :-P

Thanks, hon!
Anonymous Anonymous said...
Shucks! I thought maybe the "your buffalo was pretty good too" might be some kind of "code". I have cooked this dish a few times, but I have always used loin filet and the sauce isn't nearly as interesting as this one. I can't wait to try it. I am thinking Sunday after the kids are gone. As usual, if John suggests a dish, I am in! I have learned through experience that he has one of the best palates I have experienced! Merry Christmas John to you and your exceptional family!
Blogger Chris said...
Another superb and stunning dish, you just crank them out don't you John? For this one to get such high praise from your wife, I can only imagine how good it was. Keep up the great work.

Merry Christmas to you and your family. I hope it is special!
Blogger Unknown said...
Wow, I'm humbled by all of your very kind and gracious comments. Thank you all for your continued support and encouragement.

It's gonna be an exciting 2011. I can't say why just yet, but it will be good.
Anonymous Sarah said...
Whoa. Now that's just... amazing. :)
Anonymous Robyn said...
You should make this for yourself for your birthday. You would be quite deserving! :)
Blogger Zach Smith said...
Question for you John - my kitchen doesn't really ventilate very well, and I made a similar dish a couple of months ago that really smoked up the whole house. I think it's the high heat/olive oil combination. Any suggestions on how to cut down on the smoke? I don't really like opening all my windows when it's sub-40 outside.
Anonymous Anonymous said...
Saw this recipe and thought about the New York I had in the Fridge. I didn't want to trudge out to the barbeque in the snow, I followed your recipe to the T and what a treat! It was the greatest flavors combined and the steak could be cut with a fork. Thumbs up!

Thank you!
Blogger Unknown said...
Thanks, Gerry! I'm really glad that you enjoyed it. It certainly is a wonderful way to enjoy a good steak.
Anonymous Anonymous said...
If I cant find Flat Iron what is another good cut that I can use ?
Blogger Unknown said...
Anonymous - Traditionally the recipe calls for filet mignon, but any steak that you like would be fine.
Blogger John Tanner said...
Awesome.....perfection twice now, thanks!
Anonymous Anonymous said...
Wow that looks truly mouth watering, we love Ree but we missed this one so I'm so glad I found it here. I'm planning to step up my BBQ game and your blog is an awesome resource thanks!
Blogger J to the M said...
which brand of dijon do you use?
Blogger Unknown said...
Grey Poupon, or whatever I have on-hand. It really doesn't matter.

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