You will see this particular delicacy in many restaurants under the title "Steal au Poivre" which, of course, makes it sound very continental and difficult to cook. In fact, it is extremely easy as you will soon discover when you try it for yourself.
How to make Peppered Steak:
Spread the steak pepper evenly over a large plate and place the steaks on top, turning them once to coat each side in pepper, Place the oil (or duck fat) in a frying pan and heat until almost smoking. Add the steaks and seal both sides quickly of this high heat (about 30 seconds each side). Pour the brandy into the pan and ignite with a match. As the flames begin to die down, turn the steaks and gently swish the brandy and juices around the pan (This keeps the flames alight for a little longer). Lower the heat and cook for a further 1-3 minutes on each side according to your taste (1 minute each side will give you a medium-rare steak and 3 minutes each side will give you a well done steak). Transfer the steaks to a warmed serving dish and keep hot.
If you are cooking more than two steaks, you now need to repeat this process with the other steaks before you make the sauce.
To make the sauce, add the cream and a little salt to the juices in the pan. Stir in the cream (but do not allow to boil) then spoon a little of the sauce over each steak and serve immediately with French fried potatoes and a fresh tomato.
** If you don't have steak pepper available to you, take some whole black peppercorns and crush them between layers of kitchen paper or a clean cloth, using a heavy object (like a rolling pin).
This recipe has the slight drawback of needing to be cooked and served immediately. This is fine if you are just eating it yourself or with the family. If you are entertaining though, you need to excuse yourself from the table to cook this while your guests keep themselves entertained. This is not a dish that keeps well in the oven!