Steak Au Poivre is a French dish where a steak is prepared with a crust that consists of coarse peppercorns. Traditionally Filet Mignon is used for this dish. The rich flavor of the steak is balanced by the intensity of the black pepper. This recipe the steak was prepared using a Sous Vide. However, you can prepare the steak on a grill, in a pan or under the broiler. Later in the post, I share my recipe on this elegant dish.
What is Sous Vide? Sous Vide is a style of French cooking where you use a vacuumed sealed bag to cook your food at a constant temperature in a water bath. For more information and an in depth look into Sous Vide cooking and techniques, read my upcoming post on Sous Vide cooking and the history behind it.
If you are going to make this dish using a Sous Vide, I recommend for a one inch steak to cook it at 126 degrees for forty five minutes. This temperature will yield a perfect medium rare. A marbleized bone-in rib eye is the cut of beef that “The Beast” prefers above all others. However, I feel that a filet mignon is the perfect choice for this dish. Using the sous vide method, I have to admit the filet mignon came out perfect. Not only was the temperature spot on, it cut like butter. The filet mignon was extremely tender and tasteful.
As for wine pairing, I would recommend a Syrah. The flavors of the black currants, plum and blackberries from the Syrah enhances the flavors of the beef and the peppercorn sauce.
- 2 Filet Mignon’s approximately 1 inch thick
- 2 Tablespoons whole black peppercorns or peppercorn medley
- A few extra whole black peppercorns for the sauce
- 1 Tablespoon of kosher salt
- 1 Tablespoon of vegetable oil
- 3/4 Cup of heavy cream
- 1/2 Cup of Cognac
- 4 Tablespoons of unsalted butter
- 1/4 Cup of finely chopped shallots
- Coarsely crush the peppercorns using a mortar and pestle. If you do not have one, you can seal the peppercorns in a plastic bag and crush them using a meat pounder or hammer.
- Pat the steaks dry and then season with the kosher salt and then generously coat them with the crushed peppercorns.
- If cooking via the sous vide method: Place steaks in a vacuum sealed bag and place in the water bath at 126 degrees for forty five minutes. (Otherwise cook the steaks as you normally would.)
- When the steaks are done, remove them from the vacuum sealed bag. Heat a skillet over high heat. Sear the steaks on all sides. Remember they are already cooked, so you just want to add color and give it a crust. Remove the steaks from the skillet and set them aside to rest.
- Lower the heat on the skillet to low. Add 2 tablespoons of butter and the shallots. You want to continually stir the shallots until they are completely browned. This usually takes approximately 3-5 minutes.
- Add the Cognac carefully so it doesn’t flare up. Also add a few whole peppercorns for appearance and texture. Stir the Cognac until the liquid is reduced to a glaze. Generally 2 to 3 minutes.
- Add the cream. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. You want the sauce to reduce by half. This will take approximately 3 to 5 minutes.
- Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and cook over low heat. Continue stirring until the butter is fully incorporated into the sauce.
- Plate the steak and you can either pour some sauce over the steak or serve it on the side.