My husband requested steak au poivre for his birthday dinner. This worked well because it was a recipe I'd been wanting to try. After sorting through multiple recipes, I realized that each one was more different than the other. Some used brined green peppercorns in the sauce. Others patted crushed peppercorns into the steak. Considering how much my husband loves pepper, I decided to combine the two. My husband always talks about a steak he tried once in a restaurant that was completely encrusted with pepper, so I decided to replicate that. For this steak, I bought a small jar of five mix peppercorns. I poured the entire jar into a Ziploc bag and ran a ceramic rolling pin over them until they were barely crushed. After sprinkling a little salt on both sides of two 8 oz filets, I patted all sides of the filets in the crushed peppercorn. My husband was starting to drool at the sight of these steaks.
While the steaks cooked, I started the sauce. I liked the idea of using green peppercorns in brine, but unfortunately had not been able to find any. Earlier in the day, I decided to take a tablespoon of dried green peppercorns instead and left them to soak in about a tablespoon of beef broth.
I combined about three different recipes for the sauce, including those by The Pioneer Woman, Tyler Florence, and Brooklyn Farmhouse. Here’s what I came up with:
Steak au Poivre
· 2- 8 oz filets
· mixed peppercorns (crushed)
Prepare steaks as mentioned above, then cook however you choose. We grilled them. When the steaks are about 5 minutes from done, begin the sauce.
· 1.5 tbsp butter
· 1 shallot (diced)
· 1.5 to 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
· ¼ cup brandy
· 1/2 to 1 tbsp green peppercorns soaked in beef broth
· ½ cup cream
· splash of red wine (optional)
Melt the butter in a large skillet. Add diced shallot and cook on low heat until soft. Whisk in brandy and Dijon mustard. Add green peppercorns and accompanying beef broth while stirring. Allow to cook down while you measure out the cream. Add cream and splash of red wine. (I had an open bottle on the counter, so it seemed like a good idea at the time.) Allow it to bubble for about a minute to thicken. Remove from heat and pour over steak.
I served these steaks with mashed potatoes and my husband’s favorite green bean recipe. Upon his first bite of steak, my husband announced, “and you can quote me on this- YUM, PEPPER!!” I had read that steak au poivre and cabernet sauvignon are a classic pairing, so we opened a bottle of 2007 Benziger cabernet sauvignon to round out the meal.
My husband enjoyed every bite of the pepper overload. I found myself a little overwhelmed with pepper and started to scrape some off the sides of the steak. The sauce, however, was fantastic. I was also surprised at how easy it was too make. In the end, my husband ended up with a birthday dinner he really enjoyed and we have a new steak recipe to keep in the rotation.