Steak au Poivre (Valentine Dinner at Home)

Steak au Poivre, mashed potatoes, beans & carrots…  dinner for two…

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This bistro-style, pepper-crusted steak is a classic choice for Valentine’s Day.  It’s “dressed-up” without being pretentious and demands little time in the kitchen – so you can focus all your efforts on your Valentine.
Wine of choice:
Chateau La Nerthe 2000  from appelation of Chateauneuf-du-Pape 
A full bodied Rhone with velvety tannins and a long currant berry spice after taste.  The peppercorn sauce does not dominate this French wine.  Or, choose any full bodied California Cabernet.

 

Poivre is the French derivative of the Latin word for  “pepper”.  Steak au poivre or pepper steak is a French dish that consists of a steak, traditionally a filet mignon, coated with loosely cracked peppercorns and then cooked. The peppercorns form a crust on the steak when cooked and provide a pungent but complementary counterpoint to the rich flavor of the high-quality beef.

The peppercorn crust itself is made by placing the steak in a bed of

sear in hot butter
sear in hot butter

cracked black (or mixed) peppercorns. Typically, the steak is seared in a hot skillet with a small amount of butter and oil to cook it. The steak is seared at a high temperature to cook the outside quickly and form the crust while leaving the interior rare to medium rare. The steak is then left to rest for several minutes and then served.

Ingredients:
2 tenderloin or filet steaks 6-8 ounces each and not more than 1 1/2

ingredients at the ready
ingredients at the ready

inches thick
2 teaspoons Kosher salt
1 Tablespoon mixed whole peppercorns (black, white,red, green)
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, divided

2 Tablespoons shallots, minced
1/4 cup red wine
1/2 cup beef stock
1 Tablespoon capers, drained

Parsley, chopped finely as garnish

Pre heat oven to 400*

Remove steaks from refrigerator about 30 minutes before cooking.  Trim off any surrounding fat and cartilage. Pat steaks dry and season both sides with Kosher salt.  Crush pepper corns. Spread crushed peppercorns evenly on a plate then press into both sides of the steak.

Heat 1/2 tablespoon of butter and the olive oil in a good heavy skillet.  Once skillet is very hot, add steaks and sear-without turning- until underside is caramelized and a crust has started to from – 2-3 minutes on each side.  If your frying pan is not “oven proof” remove from pan and transfer to an oven proof dish. Finish by roasting in oven 5-7 minutes, or until desired temperature is achieved.
Meat should be just firm to the touch for medium-rare, or 125* F on an instant-read thermometer.  Remove beef from oven cover with foil and let rest 5 minutes before serving.

  Meanwhile, pour excess fat from skillet, use medium-high heat and add shallots.  Saute’ briefly until barely softened, about 15 seconds.

Carefully add wine and simmer until the liquid has almost evaporated.  Use a wooden spoon to scrape up brown bits as you stir
Add stock and continue to boil until sauce has reduced by half – about 5 minutes.
and capers-stirring
and capers-stirring

Stir in capers and season to taste with salt.  Add remaining 1 tablespoon butter to sauce and swirl in skillet to incorporate.
When ready to serve, drizzle sauce generously over steaks and sprinkle with parsley.

Enjoy!
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Yes, you can dine like a king…

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