Lockdown Day 34 (Monday)

Steak with pepper sauce – see recipe below
New potatoes from Riverford

Steak with pepper sauce

This has to be the best supper for one, or two, and as I don’t often eat red meat it feels like a treat (and reward for getting through 5 weeks of lockdown). The baby potatoes from Riverford were so delicious boiled, no butter required. The pepper sauce I usually make is, as so often with my cooking, a mish-mash of different versions. In fact I turned to the wonderful “Good French Cooking” and got very distracted reading the chapter on sauces (chapter one, as sauces are so important in French cooking – in an English cookery book they are relegated to the back of the book). A proper sauce au poivre includes stock, and is reduced down. This is a very lazy version made at the last minute.

Ingredients (serves one)

1 Steak
1 heaped tsp peppercorns (black or different colours), roughly crushed
1 generous tbsp brandy, red wine, sherry or madeira
1 flat tsp red currant jelly
1 generous tbsp cream


Take the steak out of the fridge half an hour before you start cooking, remove from any packaging and put on a plate.
Crush the peppercorns roughly in a pestle and mortar, spice grinder, or plastic bag using a rolling pin or empty wine bottle.
Put a plate to warm. Have any side dishes ready to go.
Heat a frying pan with a splash of olive oil over high heat til very hot and nearly smoking.
Put the steak in the frying pan (careful as it may spit) and brown briefly on both sides over the high heat.
Turn the heat down to medium and cook on one side, and then the other, until cooked to your preference.
How long to cook steak for is really a matter of practice, and at the beginning it’s easiest to cook on both sides using this rough guide, then make a small cut to see if it’s still too bloody for your liking:
– rare, 1-2 minutes on each side
– medium rare, 2-3 minutes on each side
– medium, 3-4 minutes on each side

Put the cooked steak on a warm plate.
Deglaze the pan with the alcohol (translation: return the pan to low heat, add the alcohol and use a metal spoon or spatula, scrape away at all the little bits left by the cooking process.)
Add the crushed peppercorns.
Simmer for a minute, add the redcurrant jelly, stir well.
Add the cream, stir well.
Test for seasoning, add salt if necessary.
Pour over the steak or serve on the side.

Trump has started talking back to himself on Twitter – retweeeting himself and responding. Long rant yesterday “I will often be in the Oval Office late into the night & read & see that I am angrily eating a hamberger & Diet Coke in my bedroom. People with me are always stunned. Anything to demean!etc etc, now deleted. All his deleted tweets, going back to 2015, are here on Politwoops.

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