Weekend Wine Pairing: Steak au Poivre with…

This is a pungent, French steak dish that is accompanied by a pan sauce that includes Cognac, cream, and juices from the pan. When you want to jazz up a steak and add some unique flavor, this is a decent recipe to try.

In a nutshell, Steak au Poivre is simply an entree of steak, seasoned with black pepper and adorned with a brandy and cream reduction. Dee-licious!

Steak au Poivre

Ingredients (credit: Yummly.com)

  • 4 strip steaks (3/4 to 1 inch thick boneless beef top loin strip steaks 8 to 10 oz)
  • 1 tbsp kosher salt
  • 2 tbsps black peppercorns
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup shallot (finely chopped)
  • 1/8 cup unsalted butter (cut into 4 pieces)
  • 1/2 cup cognac (brandy)
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream


Preheat oven to 200°F.

Pat steaks dry and season both sides with kosher salt.

Coarsely crush peppercorns in a sealed plastic bag with a meat pounder or bottom of a heavy skillet, then press pepper evenly onto both sides of steaks.

Heat a 12-inch heavy skillet (preferably cast-iron) over moderately high heat until hot, about 3 minutes, then add oil, swirling skillet, and sauté steaks in 2 batches, turning over once, about 6 minutes per batch for medium-rare.

Transfer steaks as cooked to a heatproof platter and keep warm in oven while making sauce.

Pour off fat from skillet, then add shallots and half of butter (2 tablespoons) to skillet and cook over moderately low heat, stirring and scraping up brown bits, until shallots are well-browned all over, 3 to 5 minutes.

Add Cognac (use caution; it may ignite) and boil, stirring, until liquid is reduced to a glaze, 2 to 3 minutes. Add cream and any meat juices accumulated on platter and boil sauce, stirring occasionally, until reduced by half, 3 to 5 minutes. Add remaining 2 tablespoons butter and cook over low heat, swirling skillet, until butter is incorporated. 

Serve sauce on, or with steaks

What wine pairs with Steak au Poivre?

Zinfandel: a spicy red wine with blueberry & blackberry pairs nicely with this steak

Merlot: a dry version, with plum, blackberry and clove will do the trick as well


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