Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Steak With Green Peppercorn Sauce

Steak Au Poive in Italy

     It's our last night in Italy, Milan specifically, we have spent the last 11 days train hopping, sunbathing, drinking vino, hand waving, meeting family, drinking vino, practicing our Italian, drinking vino, hiking, sightseeing, drinking vino, and to say the least we were tired.  We had pasta as much as one can have, (that is a hard thing to admit), so we wanted something out of the ordinary.  It was a rainy day.  We had walked the streets of Milan for hours.  Our feet were tired, our minds exhausted, and our stomachs empty.  It was our dream to travel this far to trace our roots.  We had seen all we could possibly see in almost two weeks time.  It was a dreary day, our minds hurt, our tolerance for each other spent, and our pockets running thin.  It had rained for the most part from the time we got up that day.  Our flight left early the next morning and we wanted a nice sit down meal to end our amazing adventure together.  We slopped through the puddles, the wind, and the dark streets of Milan for a while looking for a place that could meet our needs.  Either the place was closed or the wait was too long for our current patience.  We turned the corner and before our eyes was a bright neon sign and marquee.  A surprisingly little restaurant that appeared to be open and available.  The sign read French and the menu was a combination of both Italian with some French cuisine thrown in.  Our eyes met each other and our thoughts intertwined.  "Could this be any good? Come on, it's a French restaurant in Italy, this can't be any good?" 
     We were greeted immediately by a nice gentleman who took us to our table.  The dining room was very well designed with nice white table clothes, dark wood walls, and elegant décor.  They sat us at a long table with other people.  The dining was family style and you sat with others.  We were given each a menu and wine list.  We ordered a light drink and some antipasti.  My cousin and myself decided to go a little different this night.  We chose what is normally a French dish.  A wonderful steak served to our preference topped with a great green peppercorn sauce.  Ahhh, and then heaven was just reached........  The flavorful bursts of the peppercorns in our mouth with such excitement.  The creaminess of the sauce with the addition of Brandy lingered on the palate. The steak cooked perfectly rare so juicy it cut like butter.  Was this the angels speaking to us gently in our ears?  Was this what euphoria feels like?  My mouth, my stomach, my heart all in line with each other.  We were relaxed, content, and happy.  It felt like home should feel.  Steak With Green Peppercorn Sauce

  • 1 lg flank steak
  • McCormick’s Montreal Seasoning
  • 1-cup beef stock
  • 1-cup heavy cream
  • 1/4-cup brandy
  • 2 tbs green peppercorns from brine
  • 1 lg shallot
  • 2 tbs butter
  • Salt/pepper
     I actually made the brine for my peppercorns myself and now store them on my shelf for use at anytime.  In a large sauté pan melt the 2 tbs butter.  Salt and pepper the flank steak and sprinkle on a bit of McCormick’s seasoning.  Pan sear the steak on both sides until a crust has formed.  Remove from the pan and cook quickly on a hot grill to preferred temperature. Remove and sit aside. Then sauté the shallots in same pan until nice and tender.  Pour in the brandy and stock and reduce.  Pour in the cream and the drained peppercorns.  Stir, reduce heat, and simmer very low for about 10 minutes until it thickens.  Slice the flank steak at an angle against the grain.  You will be amazed at how tender it is.  Serve and drizzle some of the peppercorn sauce over top. Serves anywhere between 2-4 people based on size of steak.  One of the best ways to eat a steak! This continues to put me back to that rainy night in Milan.

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