Green Peppercorn Sauce

Peppercorn SauceA while back, I introduced you to the nouvelle cuisine of my father-in-law and his famous Chicken Marsala.  I have cooked that one over and over by now, adapted it for Veal with a couple of my own touches, and eaten the original chez Chip numerous times.  But I have not, until now, had the opportunity to taste the just-as-famous but considerably more elusive Green Peppercorn Sauce.

And wow, did this ever live up to its reputation!  A blanket of thick, rich, slightly tangy sauce, draped over a perfectly cooked filet mignon – I drool just writing about it.  Chip allowed me to photograph his process last night, but made me swear that I would give the recipe full credit to Williams-Sonoma, who included it on the tag that came with his jar of beef demi-glace.  This recipe is also a great way to use up some more of the green peppercorns called for in my last post!

Green Peppercorn and Cognac Sauce, from Williams-Sonoma recipe developers and product marketers

2 tablespoons clarified butterimg_0297
4 filet mignon, each 6 oz., 1 1/2 inches thick
1 shallot, minced
¼ cup cognac
 cup heavy cream
 cup beef demi-glace
1 tablespoon green peppercorns, well rinsed
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temp, cut into small pieces

In a large saute pan over medium heat, warm the clarified butter until nearly smoking. Place the filets in the pan and sear until nicely browned underneath, about 5 minutes. Turn the filets over and continue cooking until nicely browned on the other side, about 5 minutes more for medium-rare, or until done to your liking. Transfer the filets to a warmed platter, season lightly with salt and pepper, and cover loosely with aluminum foil.

img_0313Pour off all but 1 Tbs. fat from the pan. Set the pan over medium heat, add the shallot and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 3 minutes. Off the heat, add the cognac. Return the pan to medium heat, bring to boil and cook until the cognac is almost evaporated, about 3 minutes. The cognac may ignite, but it will burn off. Add the demi-glace, cream and peppercorns and whisk to combine. Cook until the mixture is slightly thickened, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the butter and whisk until incorporated. Season with salt and pepper, and pass the sauce alongside the filets or pour over them just before serving. Serve immediately. Serves 4.

Filet with Peppercorn Sauce

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