French Pepper Steak

Recipe courtesy of Chef Justin Persons

Yields 4 servings

4 New York steaks, 16 to 20 ounces each

2 cups soy sauce

¼ cup lemon juice

2 cups flour

¾ cup coarse black pepper

2 cups Brown (Burgundy) Sauce (see recipe below)

Corn oil

Brown (Burgundy) Sauce Stock

4 cups beef stock (see recipe below)

Dash of burgundy wine

Beef base (or beef bouillon) to taste

Roux

3/4 pound butter/margarine blend

Flour as needed to thicken roux

Beef Stock

5 pounds beef trimmings with or without the bone

2 gallons water

1 medium carrot, chopped

1/3 bunch celery, approximately

4 stalks chopped

1 onion, chopped

2 bay leaves

1 tablespoon black pepper

This is the steak that makes the Double Musky famous. Select well-marbled steaks that are at least 1 ½ inches thick and trim off any excess fat.

Mix together soy sauce and lemon juice. Mix together flour and ½ cup of coarse black pepper. Mix together Brown (Burgundy) Sauce with ¼ cup of coarse black pepper. Heat about ¼ inch of corn oil in cast-iron skillet until the oil pops when a drop of water is dropped in it. Using tongs, dip the steak into the soy-lemon mixture, then into the flour mixture, coating it on all sides. Place the steak in the skillet. Turn the steak frequently, and if it’s large, fry the sides too (hold the steak upright with the tongs to cook the sides). For a medium-rare steak, fry for about 10 to 12 minutes. After the first minute of cooking, raise the steak so that the hot oil runs underneath it. You want the pepper-flour crust to turn a golden brown on all sides. When the steak is cooked to your satisfaction, remove it from the pan and pat the excess oil off gently with paper towels. Place the cooked steak on a plate and pour the peppered Brown (Burgundy) Sauce over it. Beef Stock 5 pounds beef trimmings with or without the bone 2 gallons water 1 medium carrot, chopped 1/3 bunch celery, approximately 4 stalks chopped 1 onion, chopped 2 bay leaves 1 tablespoon black pepper Put all of the stock ingredients into a large pot and simmer on low heat for 4 hours. Add water as needed to keep the beef scraps covered. Pour the stock through a fine strainer and refrigerate it overnight. The fat in the stock will rise to the top and solidify, and can be easily removed at that point. Makes approximately 1 gallon.

Stock:

Combine beef stock, wine and beef base in a pot at least twice the size of the sauce you are making, and bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the temperature to low and simmer for 30 minutes to an hour.

Roux:

As the stock is heating up, make a brown roux with the butter/margarine blend and flour. (Don’t use whole butter as it will taste scorched in a brown roux.) Whisk the roux, adding more flour until it reaches the consistency of cooked oatmeal. Continue to whisk the roux as it cooks, so that no roux has a chance to burn. (If you burn the roux even a little, start over.) The roux will start out having the color of buttered flour; continue the process until the roux reaches a reddish chocolate brown. Remove the roux from the heat and let it cool a little, stirring constantly. Add a little of the stock (about 1/4 cup) to the hot roux to cool it down faster, but be careful: it will boil and bubble with a lot of steam.

Preparing the sauce:

Remove stockpot from heat. Stir in the hot roux to the stockpot a little at a time with a whisk until it is all in the stock. Place the sauce back on the burner and bring it to a simmer over low heat, whisking constantly. The sauce should be thick enough to coat the back of a spoon; add more stock or roux to adjust consistency as necessary. Simmer the sauce on low heat for at least 1 hour to fully cook the roux and make a smoother sauce. Makes 4 to 5 cups. Best used fresh.

Put all of the stock ingredients into a large pot and simmer on low heat for 4 hours. Add water as needed to keep the beef scraps covered. Pour the stock through a fine strainer and refrigerate it overnight. The fat in the stock will rise to the top and solidify, and can be easily removed at that point.

Makes approximately 1 gallon.