Steak Bordelaise: Molecular Gastronomy Style

Here’s a fun fact about me: Before now, I had never cooked steak before in my life. So maybe I am not, how-you-say, “the perfect housewife.”  Sorry hubs, but I’m not really that sorry.

Second fact about me: I don’t typically enjoy steak. =o Exception goes for filet mignon, cuz it’s like butta. I think I choked on beef too many times as a little kid, so it ruined it for me (if you turn that into a joke, you are, my dear, disgusting).  So you may wonder, why the heck are you blogging about steak then, Jen?? Well, I believe that people should know how to prepare foods that they may not love to eat typically. For knowledge sake. There is also the hope that maybe I will come to like a food because I prepared it with my own two hands (<- Also a great trick for five year olds who are still picky eaters…..) Final thoughts: I was SOO happy with how these steaks came out. Brilliant. Especially with the bordelaise sauce and the scalloped potatoes. Will make again, as possibly a steak staple.

While I had never made steak before, I decided to go with an atypical preparation because that’s the kind of gal I am. My friend told me about this modernist technique, and I was like, okay, let’s get to it then! The preparation involves first freezing the steak and then immediately searing it and finally baking it on low heat for an hour. Maybe counter-intuitive, but not if you’ve never cooked steak before! Huzzah!


Tenderloin Cut


Skirt Steak

Serious Eats Tip on Cooking Steak: If you’ve got the time, salt your meat for at least 40 minutes and up to overnight before cooking. If you haven’t got 40 minutes, it’s better to season immediately before cooking. Cooking the steak anywhere between three and 40 minutes after salting is the worst way to do it.

Below are directions for cooking a steak the molecular gastronomy way – courtesy of Nathan Myhrvold. I used a beef tenderloin and two smaller skirt steak. Takes around an hour to freeze. Freezing the steak in advance will ensure that you don’t overcook the meat while you achieve that perfect sear. Afterwards, see the recipe at the bottom for how I used the prepared steaks..P.S. Working with hot oil almost made me crap my pants. Don’t judge me.

I served my steak with a side of Cheddar Scalloped Potatoes (YES DO IT), recipe found here.

The core temperature of the steak will increase at a faster rate as time goes on. Once the thermometer indicates that the core temperature is within 10 °C / 18 °F from your target, check the steak every minute or so to avoid overcooking.

The steak will continue to cook a few more degrees after it comes out of the oven.

  • 131 °F for a medium-rare finish.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Steak Bordelaise

2-3 steaks (I used two skirt steaks and a filet)

6 tbsp butter

2 shallots
1/2 cup wine
1 cup beef stock
2 tbsp chopped parsley

salt and pepper

Clean out pan of excess oil. Cook the shallots in a little bit of butter over medium heat. Stir from time to time until they are soft and starting to turn golden, around 5 mins.

Deglaze the pan with red wine; give it a good stir.

Now, add the debeef stock to the pan and stir until everything is blended, then leave it to simmer for 5 minutes or until reduced.



Cut the remaining butter into small pieces and add them to the sauce one at a time, mixing so that they melt into the mixture: this will give the sauce a rich flavour and give it a glossy finish.

Plate the dish. Cut the meat across the grain into thick slices and arrange them on a plate.
Add some chopped parsley to the sauce, then pour little of the sauce over each steak. Serve with potatoes or vegetables.