There are all kinds of theories as to why a mound of finely chopped uncooked beef mixed with raw egg yolk was ever put on a plate for the first time. At the end of this article there are links to sites that offer extensive information to the possible origins of steak tartare, but we will provide just a quick history of the dish in France.
Steak tartare (once referred to as “steak a l’Americaine”) was first officially acknowledged in France in the 1911 Oxford English Dictionary. Because words would have taken some time to be incorporated into recorded vernacular, the dish most likely began to be served around 1900. This coincided with the expansive growth of urban areas across the country where brasserie restaurants would add this newly popular dish to their menus. To this day steak tartare remains an established and expected dish on the brasserie menu.
Today’s “raw food movement” includes uncooked meat products for the same reason it recommends uncooked plants, arguing the act of cooking changes many of the healthful benefits of most foods. If fresh cut meat is handled and prepared properly there is very little chance of illness from food-borne bacteria, and Brasserie L’Oustau’s steak tartare is one of our most trusted and popular dishes.
Our Chef is very careful with the preparation of his steak tartare beginning with the choice of farm that provides our beef. By using the regional purveyor Northeast Family Farms, we are able to work quickly and directly with the fresh meat to protect it against bacterial exposure. We use the tender and mildly-flavored top butt cut of beef and immediately portions it into pieces large enough for 4-5 servings. Wrapped tightly and frozen until needed, it is then partially thawed and hand chopped into a fine texture.
To flavor our steak tartare, raw egg yolk and various flavorings are added to the chopped beef right before serving. The combination of ingredients – yolk, mustard, capers, parsley, Tabasco, Worcestershire, brandy, salt and freshly ground pepper – is a signature recipe that results in a light and multi-leveled flavor.
We are pleased and proud to offer Brasserie L’Oustau’s steak tartare on our menu with a lightly poached quail egg, greens, toasted thinly sliced baguette and olive tapenade. You can choose an appetizer portion as well as a larger entrée portion served with pommes frites. This is steak tartare done well.