Steak au Poivre
Yields: 4 servings
Time: 10 minutes prep, 20 minutes cooking, 30 minutes total
- 4 (6-oz.) beef tenderloin steaks, about 1 1/2" thick
- 3 tablespoons black peppercorns, plus more fresh ground for the sauce
- kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 shallots, minced
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1/2 cup cognac
- 1/2 cup beef stock
- 1 cup heavy cream
- Place the steaks on a plate and pat dry with paper towels. Allow them to sit at room temperature for at least 15 minutes before cooking.
- Place the peppercorns in a mortar and pestle and coarsely crush, or place in between two layers of a folded kitchen towel and coarsely crush with a rolling pin. The peppercorns should be larger pieces than you would get out of the widest setting on a pepper mill.
- Spread the crushed peppercorns onto an even layer on a plate or small tray, and press the top and bottom of each steak into the pepper, creating a loose crust. Sprinkle the top and bottom of each steak with kosher salt.
- Select the Sear/Sauté mode on the Essential Smart Skillet, set the temperature to 400°F and the timer for 20 minutes.
- Melt the butter in the pan and pour in the olive oil. Once the butter begins to brown slightly and the oil starts to smoke, carefully place the steaks in the pan (laying them away from you so oil doesn’t splash towards you). Cook the steaks, without turning or moving, about 4 minutes on each side for medium rare. (If you’d like to check with an instant read thermometer, cook the steaks until they are 125°F in the center for medium rare.)
- Remove the steaks from the pan and place on a plate to rest, covering them with aluminum foil, for about 10 minutes or until the sauce is completed.
- Reduce the temperature on the Essential Smart Skillet to 250°F and using a spoon remove all but 1 tablespoon of fat from the pan, being careful to leave all the browned bits from searing the steak in the pan. Add the shallots and thyme, stirring regularly and scraping the bottom of pan with a wooden spoon to release any fond, cooking until the shallots are softened and the thyme is aromatic, about 3 minutes.
- Add the cognac to the pan, and very carefully, ignite the alcohol with a long match or stick lighter. Once the flame burns itself out, pour in the beef stock and stir to combine. Let the stock simmer for 3 to 4 minutes, then add the heavy cream. Continue stirring regularly another 2 to 3 minutes, or until the sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Adjust the sauce by adding salt and coarsely ground black pepper, to taste.
- Uncover the steaks and transfer to a cutting board. Pour any juices on the plate back into the sauce and stir to combine. Cut each steak, against the grain, into half inch slices and place on a plate. Spoon a generous amount of the sauce, including thyme sprigs if you wish, over the top of each steak and around the plate.
Chase Away the Chill – Allowing steak to come to room temperature before searing ensures better browning and more even cooking.
Worth the Wait – Let steak rest about 10 minutes after cooking so juices can redistribute and won’t escape when steak is sliced.
Elite 6-Quart Essential Smart Skillet | Premiere Stainless Steel
Whether you’re searing a steak, perfecting a complex stew, or simply making rice, this family-sized 6-quart skillet gives you room for any meal. The high sides eliminate splatter and make it easy to toss your ingredients without worry.