Pan-Seared New York Strip Steaks with Green Peppercorn Sauce

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
4 (8-ounce) boneless strip steaks (1 to 1-1/4-inch thick, thoroughly dried with paper towels)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

For Brandy and Green-Peppercorn Sauce:
1 small shallot, minced (about 1 tablespoon)
½ cup brandy
¼ cup reconstituted Beef/Veal demi-glace concentrate (see note below *)
¼ teaspoon red wine vinegar
¼ cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons green peppercorns, rinsed
¼ teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Note* Demi-glace concentrate available at specialty food shops.

Heat the oil in a 12-inch skillet over high heat until just smoking. Meanwhile, season both sides of the steaks with salt and pepper.

Lay the steaks in the pan, leaving ¼-inch space between them. Reduce the heat to medium-high and cook, not moving the steaks until well-browned, about 3-4 minutes. Using tongs, flip the steaks; cook until the center of the steaks registers 125 degrees for medium-rare (about 4-5 minutes). Transfer the steaks to a large plate, tent with foil, and let rest for 5 minutes while preparing the sauce.

For: Brandy and Green-Peppercorn Sauce

After transferring the steaks to a plate to rest, return the now-empty skillet to medium-low heat; add the shallot and cook, stirring constantly, until lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Add the brandy and bring to a simmer, scraping the bottom of the skillet with a wooden spoon to loosen any browned bits. Add the beef/veal demi-glace sauce, vinegar, heavy cream, peppercorns, thyme, and any accumulated juices from the steaks; return to a simmer and cook until slightly reduced, about 1 minute. Off the heat, season with salt and pepper to taste. Spoon the sauce over the steaks and serve.


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