Wednesday, April 21, 2010

But of course

I had this flank steak burning a hole in my fridge today, and beef sounded like a good bet, so I decided to give steak au poivre a shot. I know that it's traditionally made with beef tenderloin, but I'll be damned if I'm going to ruin $10/lb meat with a first pass at a recipe. Besides, I like flank steak, and I didn't want Asian or Mexican, which is the direction I usually go with a flank steak.

I loosely followed this Epicurious recipe except I grilled the steaks instead of pan-frying them. I had a ton of dishes from the night before to deal with, and I didn't want to dirty up another pan. Seriously -- I don't remember those dishes all being there last night, so I'm forced to believe that either the dishes are somehow reproducing or AJ is taking Ambien and engaging in very couth, flatware-intensive sleep-eating, and also maybe some sleep-souffle-making. Also, I wanted to try roasting some potato wedges in garlic and olive oil on the grill rather than in the oven -- I try to forget the oven exists in the spring and summer.

Anyway. I was mixing up the ingredients for the sauce when I realized we're out of dijon mustard, so I had to sub in spicy brown. (Ever try asking a dude in a limo for spicy brown? Very different from the commercials, let me just say that.) Then, Hannah asked me to help her read Are You My Mother? so I decided to dump the sauce on the steaks to let them soak a bit while we read. There's a word for that, isn't there? Soaking food in a flavored liquid? Whatever, I'm not a brainiac chef. I threw the prepped potatoes on the grill for a nice slow roast and we read about the adventures of a lost baby bird and his borderline negligent mother. We finished up (spoiler: he finds his mother) and I tossed the steaks on the grill and put the salads together.

A word about making salads in my household: it gets a little stupid. Peter doesn't like cucumbers or hardboiled eggs; AJ doesn't like tomatoes, olives, or mushrooms. Neither likes onions. I will eat whatever. Isn't that what salads are about? Throw all that shit in there, it's all good. There's no point to this; I just wanted to make a stand for the garbage salad lovers out there.

When Peter walked in the door, the steaks were resting comfortably and I was working on the sauce -- boiled up what became the marinade and added the cream. While it thickened I sliced up the steaks. Mine: nice and rare. Theirs: medium. The sauce was a little funky tasting in the pan, so I served it on the side rather than risk it on the meat. But when I tried it with the potatoes and the meat, it was much, much better -- especially on the potatoes. Peppery and beefy and yum. I imagine it'd be even better with, you know, good meat. And real dijon mustard.

A note: I have no idea why the photo keeps rotating 90 degrees, but you get the gist.

I don't know how Peter felt about it -- he ate it, so I guess he liked it -- but AJ wasn't a fan. I'm thinking he's not enjoying this week much because he was far from a member of the clean plate club with yesterday's chicken, too. I guess I'll try to find something he might like for tomorrow's dinner, lest he waste away. Or lest he sneak-eat a frozen pizza.

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