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Steak au Poivre


The creamy sauce mellows the peppercorns on the steak in this quick and luscious version of a bistro classic.

  • Servings: 2

Source: Martha Stewart Living, February 2000


  • 2 tablespoons whole black peppercorns
  • 1 tablespoon whole white peppercorns
  • 1 tablespoon dried green peppercorns
  • 2 boneless shell steaks, about 12 ounces each
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 large shallot, minced
  • 1/2 cup Cognac
  • 1 cup Homemade Beef Stock
  • 1 teaspoon green peppercorns, in brine, drained and coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • Salt, optional


  1. Place black, white, and dried green peppercorns in a heavy resealable plastic bag; crush with smooth side of meat tenderizer or bottom of heavy skillet (or, pulse in spice grinder until coarsely ground). Pat steaks dry; coat both sides with peppercorn mixture. Heat 2 tablespoons butter and the vegetable oil in large skillet over medium-high heat until very hot but not smoking. Add steaks to pan; cook until seared on both sides, 4 to 5 minutes on each side for medium rare. Transfer to a platter; cover with foil.

  2. Drain all fat from skillet; melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Add shallot, and cook until it begins to soften but not brown, about 2 minutes. Add Cognac; boil, scraping up browned bits from pan. Add stock, green peppercorns, and liquid from around steaks; boil until reduced slightly, about 2 minutes. Stir in cream, and boil until sauce thickens, about 3 minutes. Season with salt if desired. Pour sauce over steaks; serve immediately.

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