British Beef Steak with a Peppercorn Sauce

The other day I posted a blog post about a steak with a peppercorn sauce. One of the reasons I cooked that dish was because a few days earlier we had eaten the Waitrose Easy To Cook version.

The Waitrose version says

British beef steaks with a creamy smooth peppercorn sauce made with roast shallots, brandy and pink peppercorns.

That did sound quite nice when I read the packet and at £4.49 wasn’t a bad price either.

Having cooked the steak according to the instructions I served it with some sautéed mushrooms, steamed vegetables and oven roasted tomatoes on the vine.

The instructions were quite simple, cook the steak, remove from the pan, add the sauce and pour the sauce over the steak.

So what were they like?

Well it certainly wasn’t horrible, it did taste okay.

However at £4.49 you can’t expect the steak to be top quality sirloin, fillet or ribeye, and it wasn’t. It was quite a tough piece of rump I think, maybe even a cheaper cut of steak! The sauce should have had a real kick with the shallots, brandy and peppercorns… but alas it was bland and lacked any depth of flavour.

I always like the ideas behind much of the food and dishes I buy at Waitrose, but looking back over the blog I realise I don’t really enjoy them. Time to rethink my shopping habits.

Oh the tomatoes were fantastic by the way, very simple, take some fresh tomatoes, dribble some olive oil on them, roast them in the oven for 15-20 minutes. Delicious.

Steak with Peppercorns and Pancetta

This is quite a quick meal and can be served with steamed vegetables and crispy potatoes.

I normally prefer ribeye cut of steak these days, with sirloin as second choice, as I prefer the flavour of ribeye. Rump, though cheaper, is often tougher than either ribeye or sirloin. I find fillet, not just more expensive, but often lacks flavour. Though in this dish it would work as the peppercorns and the pancetta add a striking flavour to the dish.

I prepare the steak by rubbing in some olive oil. Then in a plain unoiled hot pan I cook the steak. About half way through cooking I added some black peppercorns.

In order to save time, in a seperate pan I cooked off some pancetta and once they were nearly cooked added the mushrooms.

Removing the steak from the pan, once cooked, I added the pancetta and mushrooms and added half a tub of creme frache, which I let heat through.

I sliced the steak, put on the plate, poured over the sauce and served with steamed vegetables and crispy potatoes. It would also work well with plain rice.

Pink Peppercorn Crusted Beef Steaks

Sometimes time is against you with cooking, especially after a long day in the office, so ranges like Waitrose’s Easy To Cook can be a quick and useful way of making something nice to eat.

I picked Waitrose’s Pink Peppercorn Crusted Beef Steaks from their branch at Gordano Services and they did look quite nice, not just in the packet, but also on the side of the packet.

However cooking them, according to the instructions did not go to plan…

The steak itself cooked fine, but the crust stuck to the pan and separated from the steak. Think it was a combination of the preparation of the steak and my pan.

Anyhow scraping the crust from the pan onto the steaks worked okay, but they didn’t look anything like what it looked like on the packet.

I served it with potato rosti, steamed vegetables and a homemade sauce using the pan I cooked the steak in, some white wine, creme frache and a little parmesan.

Steak with Peppercorn and Mushroom Sauce

A simple but delicious recipe for steak. In this case I used rump steak, but generally I now prefer ribeye.

I seasoned the steak with crushed peppercorns.

I took a heavy based frying pan and placed it on the heat. I put in a splash of olive oil and once this was hot placed the steak in the pan.

Cook the steak to your liking, I cooked mine to medium.

Once the steak is cooked, remove to a warm plate and let it rest.

Add the mushrooms to the frying pan and cook on a high heat. After cooking the mushrooms, remove and then remove the pan from the heat and then add some creme frache or cream.

I sliced (carved) my steak and then added the sauce and mushrooms.