If you’re a steak lover, no doubt you’ve had Steak au Poivre at a restaurant some time in your life. It’s a classic French dish. Au poivre simply means with pepper, so the steak is crusted with coarse ground black pepper, giving it a spicy bite. The rich and creamy sauce that drenches the steak is a complete contrast to the pepper zest, creating the perfect yin and yang complement.
I always try to think of how I can turn a main dish or dessert into a Big Bang Bite. So how can this classic dish become a great appetizer? Turn it into steak on a skewer, of course. Flank steak is perfect for cutting it against the grain into thin strips and threading them on to a barbecue stick, so that’s what I used. Kerry is a meat lover, so he said, “finally something with beef!”
I like an appetizer that can be made ahead of time or partially ahead of time, and this is one of them. You can skewer the steak and keep them in the fridge, as well as the cream sauce. I actually did that for this blog. I made everything earlier in the day because Sunny wasn’t able to shoot the pictures until the afternoon when the kids were napping.
This appie also doubles as a great entrée, too. Since the steak is on skewers, it's a lot lighter than having a whole steak. After I made this dish for my photos, it was dinner for us. I made some potato stacks and roasted asparagus and it was a delicious meal. Next week I have some friends coming over, so I’ll serve it with my Bacon Cheese Potato Bites, roasted carrots, and red wine.
Makes about 15 skewers
- About 2 pounds of flank steak
- coarse black pepper (a pepper mill works great for this)
- 1 T olive oil, or more
- 2 T butter, divided
- 1 shallot, finely diced
- 1/3 cup brandy
- ¾ cup cream
- 2 T chopped chives
- bamboo sticks
Slice flank steak against the grain into long strips about a quarter inch thick. If you freeze it for awhile just so it becomes stiff, it helps to get even slices. Skewer 2 or 3 pieces of meat onto bamboo sticks. Lightly salt the skewers and sprinkle with coarse black pepper, pressing it into the meat.
Heat 1 T olive oil in a frying pan on medium high. The pan should be large enough to accommodate a few skewers at a time. Cook the skewers for 30 to 40 seconds on each side according to your likeness. Remove the skewers and set aside. Keep warm in warming oven or cover with foil.
Add 1 tablespoon of butter to the same pan and lower the heat to medium. Add the shallots and cook until tender, scraping up any brown bits from bottom of the pan.
Add the brandy slowly. BE CAREFUL because brandy can ignite. Add the cream and cook for a couple of minutes to thicken. Add the other 1 tablespoon of butter and stir. Add salt to taste.
Pour over meat skewers and dust with chives.