Steak Moutarde Flambé
This recipe comes from the Belle Terrasse in Copenhagen’s Tivoli Gardens (alas now closed) which Vincent and Mary included in A Treasury of Great Recipes. Here's Vincent's introduction and what Peter (Vincent Price Legacy curator) thought of the dish.
‘We are inclined to think that nowhere else in the world is there beef the equal of ours. But in Denmark, the beef raised on their rich farm and grazing lands are superlative, their dairy products without peer. In this recipe, rich Danish beef is prepared with a mustard sauce that utilizes the thick, heavy cream-both sweet and sour-for which the country is famous. By flaming the beef with cognac, all of the juices and flavorings are sealed into the meat, and all the wonderful brownings in the pan are loosened to become part of the sauce. At Belle Terrasse, these steaks were served with French fried potatoes and a cool, crisp salad. An unbeatable combination.’
Simply delicious: and I think it’s the herbs that really lift the dish; plus I love mustard so the sauce is a winner. I’ve also tried using just the sour cream, and replaced the cognac with the less expensive French Brandy, and works a treat. Oh, I just love the kitchen theatre igniting the spirit. But watch out you don’t singe anything. There’s also that sense of satisfaction that you have just knocked up a restaurant-quality dish at a fraction of the price – but don’t scrimp on the beef. Get it organic and use the best cut: fillet.
Saute the seasoned fillets for 4-5 minutes on each side.
Pour off the excess fat. Add cognac. Ignite and when the flame burns out remove and set aside.
To the skillet add mustard and paprika, sour cream and cream. Stir for 1 minute.
Pour the sauce over fillets and serve.
How to make
In skillet heat: 1 tablespoon butter, sauté over high heat: 4 fillets of beef, 1/2 inches thick, for 4 minutes. Turn and sprinkle with: salt, coarsely sage ground pepper, 1/4 teaspoon rosemary and 1/2 teaspoon crumbled sage leaves. Cook to the desired degree of doneness (4 to 5 minutes per side for rare).
Pour off excess fat from the pan and sprinkle fillets with 1/4 cup cognac. Ignite the cognac and when the flame burns out, transfer fillets to a warm serving platter and keep warm.
To the skillet add: 4 teaspoons Dijon mustard, 4 teaspoons mild brown or herb-flavoured mustard, and 1/4 teaspoon rose paprika. Combine: 2 tablespoons commercial sour cream and 1/2 cup cream and stir into mustard in skillet. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Pour the sauce over the fillets and serve.