Sirloin Steak W/Bourbon Peppercorn Sauce.
Ready for more cast iron cooking? This sauce I adapted after searching through many similar recipes, in search of a the perfect bourbon peppercorn sauce. This sauce of perfection would also go with a side dish of garlic mashed baby red potatoes.
But to make the perfect Bourbon peppercorn sauce one must understand that both of these ingredients individually are intense and strong in flavor, so you want to make sure to use the right amount of both to create a balance in flavor that you will be able to taste both in your sauce.
So what kind of peppercorns do you use? White, black and green peppercorns all grow in bunches from the same vine, and picked in various stages of growth. Green peppercorns are young when picked and are either dehydrated or preserved, resulting in a mild flavor. The black peppercorns are left to fully mature and develop a strong flavor profile. White peppercorns are black peppercorns that have been soaked to remove the outer casing. This gives the white peppercorns a more intense flavor, with a slightly fermented taste and smell from the soaking process.
Pink peppercorns and Sichuan peppercorns are not true peppercorns. Pink peppercorns are soft, fragile berries with a sweet-sharp flavor. Sichuan pepper is the berry of the mountain ash tree, with a pungent, cold flavor instead of the usual heat of a peppercorn.
So I decided to use them all except the Sichuan.
Moving onto Bourbon.
Bourbon is finding its way into more and more of our recipes. Similar to brandy in flavor, a good well-aged bourbon can replace brandy in most recipes. Traditionally used to flavor confections and desserts, it is also often used in barbecue sauces and turning up in many dishes, including a bourbon burger as well as many sauces. Bourbon is one ingredient you really do not want to skimp on, I am not suggesting buying an expensive bottle, but you don’t want to pick up a generic brand either. I spend between 15-20 on a bottle. Also you will want to burn off most of the alcohol before using to tone down the alcohol leaving a nice aged bourbon flavor that will put your dish over the top.
I like to cook my steaks using a cast iron skillet on both the stove top to create the sear and then finish in the oven. If you missed my post last month, I am including the post for you to refer back to.
Cooking A Steak In A Cast Iron Skillet
4 boneless beef top sirloin steaks
1 cup bourbon
1/2 stick unsalted butter, chilled cut into pieces
1/4 cup finely chopped shallots
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 cup beef stock or canned beef broth
Salt to taste as the beef broth has sodium in it.
1/4 cup half-and-half cream
2-3 Tbsp olive oil
Using a spice mill/coffee grinder or mortar and pestle crush the peppercorn to a course texture. Take steaks out and rub both sides with olive oil, then rub both sides with the crushed peppercorns, cover steaks with paper towel and bring up to room temperature; about 45 min to an hour.
Mince the garlic and finely chop the shallots and place aside.
Using a small sauce heat bourbon over medium heat until warm, then remove from heat. Carefully light with match. Let the bourbon burn for 30 seconds, then cover with a lid to extinguish flame.
Once your steaks are done remove from the skillet and lightly cover with foil, while you make the sauce.
Next add 2 tablespoon butter, shallots and garlic to drippings in skillet; sauté 2 minutes.
Add stock and bourbon; boil until reduced by half, about 3 minutes.
Remove from heat. Add remaining 2 tablespoons butter whisking until melted. Add cream to the skillet; cook and stir until smooth.
Spoon sauce over steaks and serve.
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