Wednesday is my first "blogiversary," so I've been reading a lot of old entries lately. I finally found my way back to the very first entry, Filet de boeuf au livarot. Since I made this when I was alone in Paris and the Boy had gone off to China, no one every tasted how good it was. So last Friday night, I made it again. I had to adjust a few things as is my way and I liked it even better this time than the last. My steaks, Rib-Eyes instead of Filets de boeuf, were fat and could really stand up to such a strong sauce. I also used a very big, very fat Onion, which cut through the rich Cheese Sauce. And, of course, a healthy dose of Piment d'Espelette. On the side, we had the season's first asparagus which were perfectly tender but still crunchy. And a light Onion-Orange Salad that Mom made. To drink we had a great bottle of Bordeaux. The meat and sauce really called for a full-bodied Wine. Surprisingly, none of this is difficult to make, so, even though it looks fancy, it's pretty simple. Whenever pan-grilling meat, it always needs to rest afterwards so the juices can redistribute. That resting time is just how much time you need to make the Livarot sauce. For those who don't know, Livarot is a washed-rind cow's milk cheese from Normandy. If it's not available, you can substitute any washed-rind or full-flavored "stinky" cheese such as Maroilles, Limburger or Harz.
Rib-Eye steaks au livarot
3 Rib-Eye Steaks
6 cloves Garlic
3 teaspoons Allspice
Salt and Pepper, to taste
2 cloves Garlic, chopped (for sauce)
1 Yellow Onion, chopped
1/4 cup Unsweetened Apple Juice
1/4 cup Water
20 cl Milk
1/4 wheel Livarot, cut into small pieces
Salt and Piment d'Espelette, to taste
3 sprigs Parsley
Mash 6 cloves Garlic with Allspice, Salt and Pepper. Rub mixture over Steaks and let sit for 5-20 minutes. Heat up a skillet over high heat. A cast-iron skillet works really well here. Grease with Canola Oil. Cook Steaks one at a time, 2 minutes per side for rare; 4 minutes for medium-rare. Place Steaks on a plate in the oven to keep warm. Make sure oven is off or else Steaks will continue cooking.
Turn heat down to low and cook Garlic and Onion until Onion is beginning to brown. Turn heat back up to high and de-glaze pan with Apple Juice and Water, scraping up any little burnt peices of Meat, Garlic or Onion. Turn heat back down to low and add Milk and Cheese. Spread cheese around pan until fully liquefied and evenly distributed. aAdd Salt and Piment d'Espelette, to taste.
To serve: Spoon Sauce over Steaks and add 1 sprig of Parsley to each Steak.
Serves 3, though the Sauce could be stretched to serve more.
Update: I made a new variation!
Food and Cooking and Recipe and Beef and Dairy and Meat