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French Fridays with Dorie: Bistrot Paul Bert pepper steak

I was so excited to see this week’s French Fridays with Dorie recipe -  Bistrot Paul Bert pepper steak (pp 238-239).  We don’t eat that much red meat these days, though I do love a good steak.  When we do, we buy from Rowe Farms, where we can be sure that the animals led happy lives and the meat actually tastes like meat.  It costs a little more but I prefer quality over quantity when it comes to meat.

This was another wonderfully simple dish that looked and tasted like it was much more complicated.  The steak is simply prepared with cracked black peppercorns and grilled.  The sauce is Cognac or brandy and cream, which we were supposed to cook in the same pan as the steak with the fat and “brown bits” left in the pan when the steak is done cooking.  Our filet mignons were so lean that they produced no fat or brown bits at all, so our sauce was not quite as darkly coloured as I would have liked (simply for aesthetic reasons) and the sauce was a little thin, but it was very tasty.

Paired with some of Neil’s double fried home fries, this was a wonderful reward for a hard day’s work on a grad school paper over Easter.  I’ll be remembering this sauce for he future.

Want to join French Fridays with Dorie? Join here.

French Fridays with Dorie participants do not publish the recipes on our blogs, rather, we prefer if you purchase Around My French Table for yourselves (trust me, you definitely want this book!) which you can do here on Amazon or Amazon Canada.  Go on, treat yourself – join us in 2011!  There are some GREAT recipes coming up!

* Don’t forget to check out next month’s “Forever Nigella” event – I’m hosting a street party in honour of the Royal Wedding and would love for you to join me. All the details here.

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48 Responses to French Fridays with Dorie: Bistrot Paul Bert pepper steak

  1. Belinda @zomppa April 29, 2011 at 07:41 #

    I’ve never been able to figure out why steak and peppercorn go so well together. Beautiful!

  2. Jill@MadAboutMacarons April 29, 2011 at 08:13 #

    Now that looks like one incredible, tender steak. The sauce, the fries done to perfection. Great bistro photos, too! Bon weekend.

  3. The Food Hound April 29, 2011 at 08:34 #

    I have her cookbook and I want to try this! I have a pepper steak recipe already so I’ll have to compare :)

  4. Adriana April 29, 2011 at 08:52 #

    Ah, to steal a couple of those frites! Great job to both of you. I enjoyed reading your Tweets during the Royal Wedding this morning. How awesome was it?

  5. Nelly Rodriguez April 29, 2011 at 09:01 #

    Can I have this breakfast? :) Looks delicious! Perfect pairing of the fries!

  6. Mr. Neil April 29, 2011 at 09:04 #

    The cracked peppercorns were from Oz – courtesy of a blog pack exchange I believe?

    Wine was immediate: Bordeaux. Yes, there are lots of (red) options, but I went straight to the Claret section in the cellar and pulled out a standby.

    If you don’t have Bordeaux handy, or similar blends (Cab Sauv, Merlot, Cab Franc) any full-bodied red will do. Personally I’d stay away from anything like Pinot Noir, Sangiovese, Granache and their ilk.

    • Adriana April 29, 2011 at 21:54 #

      We opened a Cab Sauvignon (California) at our house, but for some reason it didn’t seem to stand up to the steak as well as I thought. Must have been the pepper/overly charred exterior of the steak. I only wish I could read your comments on pairings before opening up a bottle!

  7. daksha April 29, 2011 at 11:43 #

    beautifully done delicious.

  8. Megan April 29, 2011 at 11:55 #

    I can’t wait until I have some time to go back and make the FFWD recipes I’ve missed! Love a good steak.
    Also, I’m in love with your beautiful steak knife.

    • Mr. Neil April 29, 2011 at 17:28 #

      Back away from my Laguiole… ;-)

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite May 6, 2011 at 17:36 #

      You will love this recipe when you are back in the swing of things!

  9. Our Eyes Eat First April 29, 2011 at 13:19 #

    looks like a hearty meal that hits the spot! fries look yum!

  10. Renee - Kudos Kitchen April 29, 2011 at 14:18 #

    Your photos are perfection Mardi! You look like you totally nailed this recipe, not to mention your fries. My oh my, can you pass me some of those please?

  11. Kathy April 29, 2011 at 15:51 #

    Your photos and steak look wonderful. We also don’t eat much red meat anymore. However, I feel like you do, some times you just crave a great steak! This was a wonderful dinner.

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite May 6, 2011 at 17:36 #

      I would rather have a small piece of wonderful quality meat every now and then than a huge piece of lower quality meat often.

  12. Liz April 29, 2011 at 16:14 #

    YUM, your photos are making me hungry for this one again…and your fries look incredible!!!

    • Mr. Neil April 29, 2011 at 17:29 #

      Funny, these were the “rush to take photo” batch – the SECOND batch much prettier. And tastier. :-)

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite May 6, 2011 at 17:35 #

      Gotta love home fries!

  13. amanda @ fake ginger April 29, 2011 at 17:00 #

    That whole plate is perfection! Everything looks delicious.

  14. Erin @epiCURIOUS ERIN April 29, 2011 at 17:06 #

    Love the color on that steak! Looks great!

  15. Kimmy @ Lighter and Local April 29, 2011 at 18:10 #

    Mardi – these photos are just vivid and stunning. There’s not much more in life that’s fabulous than an amazing dish of steak frites in any form. Pair that with a lovely red, and I’m thrilled. Beautiful!

  16. Celia April 29, 2011 at 20:15 #

    These pics are so gorgeous – as are your steak and frites! I’m totally in lazy grad student mode, and didn’t realize until I started drooling on my computer that it’s been soooo long since I had red meat. OK, off to go satisfy some carnivorous instincts…though with something far less elegant and French…

  17. Tricia S. April 30, 2011 at 10:04 #

    Gorgeous results. Love to know that you sourced the beef in such a wonderful way. And I really loved the Bistro blue and white towel and Laguiole flatware….spot on ! We loved it and my guys may be getting steak more often now :)

  18. Dan April 30, 2011 at 14:05 #

    That steak is making me salivate. Clearly, I did not have a substancial lunch. ;) On another note, that knife is sweet!

  19. Cher April 30, 2011 at 16:56 #

    Lovely cutlery!
    This was a steak-lover’s-steak in my mind. And the frites had to be a perfect accompaniment.

  20. My Carolina Kitchen May 1, 2011 at 07:32 #

    We can never pass up a good steak either and a cream sauce with cognac sounds divine. I’ve had the same problem with no brown bits from very lean meat. I guess it’s what happens when you eat with less fat, so I don’t mind. Thanks to all of you for testing Dorie’s recipes. I’ll be making a note in my book about this one.
    Sam

  21. Brian @ A Thought For Food May 1, 2011 at 13:37 #

    What a wonderfully flavorful steak! I’ll have to try this for Eric!

  22. MikeVFMK May 1, 2011 at 16:25 #

    Love pepper steak. And although I love beef, I pick and choose when to eat it and also choose quality over quantity and pay for it. Your steak looks perfectly cooked too!

  23. Hester aka The Chef Doc May 1, 2011 at 18:47 #

    Mmm, Mardi! This looks fantastic! I can hear my stomach rumbling as I stare at these pictures :-)

  24. Terra May 2, 2011 at 00:02 #

    I need to make a French Friday’s with Dorie recipe soon, my schedule permits me too right now, LOL! I think I may need to try this recipe later, it really does look beautiful, AND DELISH!!!
    Take care, Hugs,
    Terra

  25. Susan May 2, 2011 at 00:04 #

    Beautifully done, Mardi! I agree – it seems far more complicated than it is. Simply delicious!

  26. Paula May 3, 2011 at 00:33 #

    Beautiful dinner! Glad you finished that paper (you did finish it didn’t you?) Every time we have steak and home fries my husband says that it’s *Pub Night* at our place. I love pub nights!

  27. penny aka jeroxie May 3, 2011 at 16:50 #

    Yum! STeak and fries.. what can go wrong. Neil did a great job with the fries… double YUM

  28. Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction May 4, 2011 at 21:32 #

    I should know better than to read your French Fridays with Dorie posts late at night… Now I am hungry for a bedtime snack!

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