Steak au Poivre (Peppercorn Steak)
In this classic French dish, well-marbled, high-flavor rib-eye steaks are seasoned with salt and plenty of cracked black peppercorns, seared on the range and transferred to a hot oven to finish cooking. They’re basted with butter, that both flavors the steaks and yields a scant, rich sauce.
For additional meaty inspiration, check out our Basic Grilled Steak, Flank Steak Teriyaki, and Easy Seared Steak.
- 2 bone-in rib-eye steaks, each 1- to 1 1/2-inches thick and well marbled
- Kosher salt
- Freshly cracked black peppercorns
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/4 stick)
1Blot the steaks dry with paper towels and season all over with plenty of kosher salt and freshly cracked black peppercorns. Let stand at room temperature for 1 hour to take the chill off the steaks and allow the salt to permeate the meat.
2Preheat the oven to 425°F. In a large, heavy cast iron pan over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil until very hot and nearly smoking.
3Add the steaks and let sear for about 2 minutes without turning. Turn the steak and let sear for another 2 minutes until both sides of the steak have a nice brown crust. Drain off the oil.
4Add the butter to the pan and flip the steaks a few times to coat with the butter. Transfer to the oven to finish cooking. Let the steaks roast in the oven for 1 minute, then, using a spoon, baste the steaks with the butter. Let roast for another 1 minute.
5Use an instant-read digital thermometer to take the temperature of the meat: it should measure 125°F for medium-rare. (If you like your steak a bit rarer, decrease the oven time by 1 minute or so, so the steaks read 120°F; for medium, increase the oven time by 1 to 2 minutes, until the steaks read 130°F.)
6Remove the steaks from the pan and transfer to a platter or cutting board. Tent loosely with foil and let rest for 10 minutes. Slice the steaks and serve.
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