Steak au Poivre makes me think of Paris and as Audrey Hepburn would say, “Paris is always a good idea”… And so is this dinner!
I was lucky enough to travel to France with my husband a few years ago. We spent time in the Normandy region and in the hub of Paris. He was going for business, I was going for cheese, bread, pastries and delicious French dinners. We had steak au Poivre one evening and it ended up being one of my favorite meals we ate in Paris.
I usually order filet mignon if I’m having a steak… I like the delicate flavor and tenderness. Steak au Poivre is typically a filet and is served at nearly every bistro we ate at. I knew I’d have to have it try it one night. At a small bistro near the Marais arrondissement we drank wine, had Steak au Poivre at a small table outside and watched all of Paris pass before our eyes. Watching the city fly by was incredible, the wine was intoxicating and the steak? Totally delectable. Perfectly cooked and full of flavor. It was one of the best evenings I’ve ever had.
The best part of Steak au Poivre is the crushed peppercorns. It forms a really nice peppery crust on the outside while still having a tender, juicy center. The textures work together beautifully.
Another tasty component that I love is the sauce. It’s rich from the heavy cream, beef stock and cognac. The shallots, fresh thyme and mushrooms add a little something extra that really makes this dinner special. Mushrooms and steak go together perfectly and I’ll eat mushrooms any chance I get!
What’s your favorite French inspired dinner? I’d love to know!
Steak au Poivre with Mushrooms
4 beef filets
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/4 cup cognac
1 1/2 cups beef stock
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon shallots, diced finely
10 oz mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
fresh crushed black pepper
Unwrap the filets and crack a thick coating of coarsely ground black pepper on both sides of the steaks. Set aside.
I like to pre-cook my mushrooms for this sauce. Over medium high heat cook mushrooms until almost done, 3-5 minutes. Season with salt, pepper and thyme, cook for 1 additional minute and set aside.
Over medium-high heat, melt 1 tablespoon of butter and the vegetable oil. Add the filets to the pan and cook each side for 4-5 minutes for a medium rare steak. Transfer to a plate while you cook your sauce.
Add the cognac to the pan and scrape up any bits stuck to the bottom. Add remaining butter and diced shallots to the pan and simmer for 1-2 minutes. Pour the beef stock into the pan and let reduce for 2-3 minutes. Add the heavy cream and mushrooms and let the sauce simmer for 5 minutes, or until thickened. Season with salt before pouring over top of the steaks.
Serve with fresh cut green beans, Brussels sprouts or a potato side.