Filet de Bœuf with Porcini-Green Peppercorn Sauce

Aged, grass-fed filet of beef tenderloin is salt-crusted in a blazing hot iron skillet then finished in a 550-degree oven to a perfect medium-rare.  Served with a classic demi-glace with shallots, porcini mushrooms, aged brandy and cracked green peppercorns, finished with a knob of double Devon cream butter..

Filet de Bœuf with Porcini-Green Peppercorn Sauce

For the Steaks

Aged tenderloin filets, cut 2-1/2 inch thick
Coarse sea salt

Blot filets dry, then lightly sprinkle coarse sea salt on all surfaces.  Wrap loosely in butcher’s paper and refrigerate 4 hours.

Unwrap filets, blot dry and allow to stand 30 minutes at room temperature.  Meanwhile, pre-heat an iron skillet over medium-high heat for 15 minutes and pre-heat your oven to 550 degrees.

Sprinkle a little coarse sea salt in the bottom of the skillet and carefully lay down the filets.  Sear without moving for 3 minutes, re-salt the pan and sear the other side for 3 minutes.

Transfer the pan with the filets to the hot oven and roast about 7-8 minutes for medium rare.  Transfer filets to a dish to rest while you prepare the sauce.

For the Sauce

1 shallot, minced
1/4 cup porcini mushrooms, brushed clean and thinly sliced
2 teaspoons butter
6 oz demi-glace
3 oz fine brandy, cognac, port or Madeira
1/2 tablespoon freshly-cracked dry green peppercorns
1 tablespoon double Devon cream butter, cold

Add 1 tablespoon butter to the hot pan that the steaks were cooked in.  Add shallots and mushrooms and saute 2 minutes. Carefully add the brandy off the heat, taking care not to set the neighborhood on fire.  Return to heat and reduce until only 1 tablespoon of liquid remains.

Add the peppercorns and demi-glace and bring to a boil.  Remove sauce from the heat and whisk in double Devon cream butter.

Plate steaks and sauce and serve immediately with grilled asparagus and new potatoes, perhaps.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Steak Tacos Clásico

Grass-fed sirloin is quickly seared in a blazing hot skillet with garlic and onions, then slowly simmered with ancho purée and served atop roasted jalapeño tortillas with chopped yellow tomatoes, tomatillo-avocado salsa and fresh cilantro..

Steak Tacos Clásico

Steak Udon

Good stir-fry demands a proper, seasoned wok.  Properly cared for, this $15 wood-handled carbon steel model will last for years.

Cilantro, white miso, ginger, chili pepper, chives, scallions, red bell pepper, garlic, tofu, shiitake mushrooms, fresh udon noodles, sirloin steak, plum vinegar, sesame oil, brown rice vinegar and soy sauce.

While preparing the vegetables, marinate the steak in a non-reactive container with soy sauce, sesame oil and vinegars for about 20 minutes.

Heat the oil (I’m using a high-heat tea oil made for this purpose) until it shimmers.  Test its readiness by dropping a small piece of beef onto the sloped side- it should sizzle and brown immediately.

Add the meat to the hot oil, drawing it up the sides and around the perimeter of the wok.  Let sizzle undisturbed until the pan recovers all its heat.  Add the vegetables to the center of the pan and stir to combine.

Continue to cook by drawing the meat and vegetables up the side of the pan.  Add a few tablespoons of the marinade to the pan and quickly heat the tofu, udon noodles, miso and cilantro.  Stir to combine.

Serve with additional soy sauce, hot chili sauce and sake, if desired.

Rating  ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦