Reaching into our monthly meat CSA from Victorian Farmstead Chop Shop I found a puzzling steak: Bavette. I guess I'd heard the term before but I am sure I have never eaten it and certain I have never cooked it. How exciting. It turns out bavette, in the US more commonly called -- however unappetizing it certainly is -- flap meat is the meat that covers the animal's diaphragm, more commonly and deliciously known as skirt steak. The butcher counter darlings of the last couple years skirt (and the similar but more rare -- there is only one per steer -- hangar steak are super flavorful if a bit more chewy. I love their super meaty flavor, James delicately prefers filet.
I figured if this bavette came from near the skirt it might also carry that wonderfully rich flavor and set out to cook this little steak up for dinner. I seasoned the meat generously with salt and pepper and then seared the steak on each side in a hot pan with olive oil. I popped the meat into the oven at 425º -- where I was already roasting potatoes -- for almost 8 minutes.
Earlier, somewhat following a recipe I found online I cooked down red wine, bay leaf, garlic and onions into a thick reduction. As the steak rested I whisked cold butter into the warm, cooked wine for a beurre rouge.
As it turns out bavette has all the flavor and none of the chewy texture James dislikes. It's a low cost cut that dresses up easily. French steak, French sauce, great dinner.