In the old days of France, wine grapes were traditionally pressed by feet. The winemakers nicknamed ‘bar rosi’, or pink bottomed, due to the pink color of their feet when they were done squishing the grapes. There is a lovely sculpture by sculptor Noël-Jules Girard in the center of Dijon of a bar rosi, or bareuzai in the traditional dialect of Dijon, treading grapes.
Steak Bareuzai is the true product of the Burgundy region; local Charolais beef cut into thick steaks, spicy mustard grown in nearby fields and milled in Beaune, wild mushrooms hunted for in the damp woods and great red wine that seemingly flows from every winepress of the region. I love the fact that this is so quickly prepared, with no advanced planning other than having the ingredients on hand and perhaps a bottle of wine open. The only controversy seems to be whether or not you finish the sauce with a healthy spoonful of Dijon mustard; some recipes add it and others shun it. I personally add a big spoonful and like the creamy punch good mustard provides.
Anyone who grew up watching the sitcom ‘I Love Lucy’, will chuckle remembering the episode when Lucy and Ricky visit Italy, and Lucy gets offered a bit part in a movie called ‘Bitter Grapes’. She travels to Turo where she is given the job of crushing grapes due to the size of her abnormally large feet, which the Italians joke are the size of pizzas. She reluctantly hops into a vat filled with just picked grapes and an Italian woman who is already busy stomping grapes. I won’t give away what happens in case you have never seen it, or perhaps are in the early stages of dementia and may have long forgotten this episode. Suffice to say, the scene unfolds into one of the most hilarious episodes ever filmed.
This June, we are taking a group of culinary adventurers to visit Lyon and Burgundy. While we probably won’t get invited to stomp grapes for a movie, I can assure you that plenty of local juice will flow in our glasses as we discover the hidden gems only the locals know about. For more information visit our experiences page, or click here.
In the meantime, you don’t need to travel to Burgundy to give this easy to prepare, traditional French method for cooking a steak a try. Hashtag us at #PistouAndPastis so we can see your creations and share them!
A delicious and incredibly easy way to cook steaks in the style of Burgundy, France.
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 16 ounce steaks - bone in rib eye, strip or whatever you enjoy
- 1 tablespoon Maldon flake sea salt
- 1 tablespoon cracked black peppercorns
- 2 tablespoons butter unsalted
- 1 each red onion diced finely
- 1/2 bottle a great red wine
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 8 ounces mushrooms, wild or cultivated sliced
Heat two tablespoons of butter in a saute pan till slightly brown.
Season beef liberally with flake sea salt and cracked black peppercorns, and put in pan.
Cook for 8 to 10 minutes on each side, you are striving for a nice hard char, cook to desired temperature. I like mine medium rare and it took about 20 minutes in total.
In the meantime, melt the second butter in another pan. When it is foamy, add the red onion and saute for five minutes. The goal is to cook the onion with no color and have in tender and soft.
Add 1/2 a bottle of red wine and turn heat on high to reduce by fifty percent. The other half of wine will be what you are drinking with the steak.
Saute with mushrooms in butter, season and reserve.
Plate your steak, spoon over sauce and put a small mound of mushrooms on top. Enjoy!