Steak, smashed potatoes and béarnaise

Steak, smashed potatoes and béarnaise

Ben's Meat Bible
Benito Martin


Quantity Ingredient
500g small potatoes, skin on
2 tablespoons Meat salt
2 tablespoons duck fat
4 bone-in rib-eye steaks, (about 375 g each)
1 tablespoon olive oil
freshly ground black pepper

Béarnaise sauce

Quantity Ingredient
3 tablespoons white-wine vinegar
5 black peppercorns
1 bay leaf
1 shallot, finely chopped
1 tarragon sprig
1 teaspoon chopped tarragon
1 large egg yolk
200g unsalted butter, melted


  1. Place the potatoes in a large saucepan and fill with water. Bring to the boil and simmer for 10–15 minutes, until just tender but still firm. Drain and allow to cool slightly. Use the palm of your hands to squash the potatoes, one by one, and place them in a bowl. Season with the meat salt.
  2. Heat the duck fat in a large non-stick frying pan over high heat until hot and almost smoking. Add the smashed potatoes, turn the heat down to medium and cook, undisturbed, to allow a crust to form on the outside of the potatoes. Try not to stir them, as they will continue to break up as they cook – only turn them over once.
  3. Preheat the barbecue or place a large chargrill pan over medium–high heat.
  4. Rub the steaks with the olive oil and season well with salt and pepper. Cook on the barbecue or chargrill pan over medium–high heat until cooked to your liking (10–12 minutes per side for medium rare). Transfer the steaks to a plate and allow to rest under foil for at least 10 minutes before serving.
  5. Make the béarnaise sauce. Heat the vinegar, peppercorns, bay leaf, shallot and tarragon sprig in a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Simmer for 5 minutes, until reduced to about 1 tablespoon of liquid, then strain the liquid into a small bowl and set aside.
  6. Place a small heatproof bowl over a pan of gently simmering water, making sure the base of the bowl does not touch the water. Add the egg yolk to the bowl with the reserved vinegar reduction and set over a very low heat, whisking until light and fluffy (when you lift the whisk up, the egg should hold its shape). Remove from the heat and gradually whisk in the melted butter, a little at a time, until you have a loose, mayonnaise-like consistency. Mix in the remaining chopped tarragon and season with salt and pepper.
  7. Divide the cooked potatoes between serving plates and arrange the steaks on top. Spoon over the béarnaise sauce and serve immediately.
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