The French Laundry Cookbook
by Thomas Keller with Susie Heller and Michael Ruhlman, 1999, Artisan

Côte de Boeuf
1 double-cut rib steak (about 2 to 2 1/2 pounds)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Canola oil
4 tablespoons (2 ounces) unsalted butter

Bordelaise Sauce
1 cup red wine, such as Cabernet Sauvignon
1/3 cup sliced shallots
1/2 cup sliced carrots
1/4 cup sliced mushrooms
10 sprigs Italian parsley
2 sprigs thyme
1 bay leaf
2 tablespoons sliced garlic
6 black peppercorns
1 cup Veal Stock

Pommes Anna
10 pitted prunes
1 cup Chicken Stock
1 tablespoon minced shallots
Gray salt
2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes
6 tablespoons Clarified Butter, melted
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Chanterelle Mushrooms
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 generous cup (3 ounces) chanterelle mushrooms,
washed, stems peeled, and cut into 1-inch pieces
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Thyme sprigs

Ask the butcher for a double-cut rib steak, or côte de boeuf. Request that it be trimmed of excess fat, that the bone be “frenched”, or scraped clean, and that the meat be tied with string to help it hold its shape during cooking. I season this meat – as I do any large cut of meat to be served rare to
medium-rare – a day before cooking so that the salt has time to penetrate into the flesh and intensify the flavor. Sprinkle all sides of the steak liberally with salt and pepper.

Place on a plate and refrigerate for 1 day to allow the flavors to develop. One hour before cooking, remove the meat from the refrigerator. (It is important that beef or lamb be brought to room temperature before cooking. If the meat is cold, the cooking time will be increased and the outside will be overcooked by the time the inside reaches its proper temperature.)

For the Bordelaise Sauce: In a medium saucepan, bring the wine, vegetables, parsley, thyme, bay leaf, and garlic to a simmer, and simmer until almost all of the liquid has evaporated. Add the peppercorns and veal stock and simmer for another 10 to 15 minutes, or until the stock is reduced to a sauce consistency (about 1/2 cup). Strain the sauce through a fine mesh strainer into a small saucepan. This sauce can be refrigerated for 2 to 3 days.

For the Pommes Anna: Place the prunes and chicken stock in a small saucepan. The prunes should be just covered with liquid. Bring to a simmer and cook for about 20 minutes, or until the liquid has evaporated and the prunes are very soft. Remove the prunes to a cutting board and finely chop them. Add the shallots and gray salt to taste.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Peel the potatoes and trim into cylinders that are 1 1/2 to 2 inches in diameter. Using a mandoline, cut the potatoes into 1/16-inch slices.

Place the slices in a bowl of cold water for a minute to remove some of the starch, then drain and dry the slices on paper towels. Put 2 tablespoons of the clarified butter in an 8-inch ovenproof non-stick skillet. Place a slice of potato in the center of the pan. Lay more potato slices around the edge of the pan, overlapping them by half, until you have completely circled the pan. Continue with another overlapping circle of potatoes inside the first. When the entire bottom of the pan is covered, sprinkle a little kosher salt and pepper over the
potatoes and repeat the process to form a second layer.

Spread half of the prune mixture over the potatoes, leaving a 1/2-inch border all around. Work carefully to avoid moving the potatoes around too much. Make another two layers of potatoes, seasoning the first layer with salt and pepper, and spread the remaining prune mixture over them, again leaving a border. Cover the prunes with a final two layers of seasoned potatoes.

Pour the remaining 1/4 cup clarified butter over the potatoes and place the skillet over medium-low heat. Once the butter begins to bubble, cook for 3 to 4 minutes, shaking the pan occasionally to be sure that the potatoes are not sticking. Use a spoon to gently shape the top and sides of the potato cake, keeping the prune filling from leaking out.

Transfer the pan to the oven and bake for about 30 minutes, or until the potatoes are well browned and crisp. Invert the potato cake onto a board or serving platter. The potato cake can be made a few hours ahead and set aside at room temperature in the skillet. Reheat in a 450-degree F. oven for about 10 minutes, or until sizzling hot.

For the steak: While the potatoes are cooking, pat the meat dry (it won’t sear well if it is wet) and wrap the bone in aluminum foil to prevent it from burning.

Heat 1/8 inch of canola oil in a heavy ovenproof pan over high heat. Add the steak and sear it for 4 to 5 minutes, or until it is dark brown and crusty on the bottom. Flip the steak and brown the second side for 2 to 3 minutes. Pour off most of the oil and add the butter to the pan. Place the pan in
the oven and roast for about 5 minutes. Baste the meat with the butter and pan juice, turn the steak over, and sprinkle with salt.

Continue to cook, basting every 5 minutes, for a total of about 20 to 25 minutes, or until a meat thermometer reads 115 degree F. for rare meat. Another way to determine if the meat is cooked is to pierce the meat in the center with a cold knife or metal skewer and leave it there for 45 seconds. Hold
the tip to your lip; if it is warm, the meat is done. Remove from the oven and let the meat rest in the pan for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, for the chanterelle mushrooms: Heat the butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add the mushrooms, season with salt and pepper, and cook for about 5 minutes, or until the mushrooms are tender and slightly “toasty” around the edges and any liquid has evaporated.

To complete: Rewarm the sauce over low heat. Remove the string from the steak. Slice the meat against the grain into 1/4-inch slices. Overlap the slices on the serving plates and place a wedge of the Potatoes Anna along-side. (There will be enough potatoes for seconds.) Arrange the chanterelle
mushrooms over the steak and spoon some sauce over the top. Garnish with thyme sprigs.
Makes 2 to 3 generous servings.

Wine Pairings
2011 Cabernet Franc