25 September 2008

Steak with Peppercorn Gravy, Cheesy Mashed Potatoes and Green Beans

Another of the Sandi Richard recipes, from the new book, the title of which I don't think I mentioned in my last entry. Actually, I don't really remember the title of the book, and it's downstairs, but I'll be making something else from the book fairly soon, so once I get to that, then I'll have to remember to talk a bit more about it. Really, the book is pretty similar to the other one I've got.

Richard's focus is all on how to streamline the dinner making process so that five days out of every week, dinner can't be the most stressful part of your day. This book, and the other (The Dinner Fix) contain 10 weeks of 5 meals each - complete meals, that is. I modified this dinner, but if I'd made it her way, I'd have seared and cooked the steak first, then got started on the gravy, then I'd have put corn on the cob on to boil, and prepared a salad. Once those things were ready, the gravy would also be ready and the steaks rested, and dinner is ready to be served.

I started out with the potatoes, since they had to boil. And I felt like doing something a little bit more interesting than usual, so I added some torn up Havarti and Provolone cheese (since I could buy those by the slice at my work - I bought one 30g slice of each, and used about half of each in the two servings of potatoes that I made). Yum. All stringy and cheesy and delicious.

The beans are just steamed beans. I didn't even spritz them with a bit of lemon or add butter today. I've been having a little love affair with green beans lately. I wish the fresh ones in the stores looked a little nicer, because they always taste so much better than frozen, but these frozen ones are quite nice as well.

And then the steak. It was good, but not spectacular. I think it could have been better, but it was good enough for me to make a second attempt some day. I think next time I'll crack the peppercorns first, because, really, who wants to eat whole peppercorns? And I think the flavour would get into the gravy a lot more if they were cracked.

I think also that the gravy would have come together more easily if I'd made the full six servings, rather than 2 servings of it. It certainly wasn't bad, but I think it's one of those things that don't translate overly well to a reduction in the recipe.

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