Grey Poupon Steak with Garlic Mashed Potatoes

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Grey Poupon Steak with Garlic Mashed Potatoes
Story and Photos by Kirk Dunlap

On a lazy, Sunday afternoon in September, Gregory Valdez arrives to his fraternity brother’s kitchen with a parcel of freshly butchered steak in his hands and a smile on his face.

He considers this to be a perfect time to prepare a hearty, home-cooked meal of steak and potatoes.

As a junior double-majoring in English and Philosophy, he regards English as his favorite, “with philosophy coming in at a close second,” he says.
As an on-campus resident, Valdez jumps at a chance to cook a meal. “Cooking just isn’t something I can do every day,” says Valdez. “Cafeteria food just isn’t the same.”

Valdez feels that it isn’t about the place, but with the relationships he has made that define his experience at St. Mary’s. “I don’t feel connected to the university in terms of location,” he says. “Rather, I find that my connection with the university comes from the people who surround me here.” Valdez notes that this feeling of community comes from his close friends and his fraternity brothers.

“Sigma Phi Epsilon has given me great experiences that I know will last forever,” Valdez reveals. “Without Sigma Phi Epsilon, I would not have been able to progress this far as a person and as a student. Sigma Phi Epsilon’s cardinal principles of virtue, diligence, and brotherly love, are the values which I live by.”

What Valdez likes most about St. Mary’s is that his close network of relationships maintains his connection with others. “St. Mary’s not only keeps me on my toes with school work, but the personal size [of classes] also helps allow me to overcome the problems that are bound to arise in such a close community.”

Valdez is particular about his favorite foods. “I love to eat medium-rare steak more than anything else,” Valdez says. “But even more than steak, I like fried duck.” Pizza used to be high on his list of favorite foods, but because he has worked as a pizza delivery driver for the past two summers, pizza has lost the charm it once had.

“I still order it often though,” Valdez admits.

When first selecting a dish to prepare, he had chosen to make salmon with mango chutney, but Valdez, a spontaneous college student, had a last-minute change of heart.

“I decided that I wanted to make a meal that was much more personal to me, and thus, a lot manlier—and there’s nothing manlier than steak and potatoes.”

This particular dish is inspired by a recipe that he once saw on a cooking show. “I got the idea for this recipe from Paula Deen on the Food Network,” Greg says. “The major difference is that I pan fry the steak in butter, rather than grilling it. It is a simple, delicious, recipe that is easy to make and is beyond delicious.”

“Usually I like to use a 16 ounce ribeye steak, but I thought it would be nice to try the recipe with a 16 oz Texas t-bone, because they were on sale.”

Greg’s Grey Poupon Steak:

  • 2 16 oz steaks, 1 inch thick.
  • Grey Poupon (or Similar) Brown Dijon Mustard
  • 1 clove garlic finely minced
  • Ground black pepper
  • Salt

Garlic Mashed Potatoes:

  • 6 c Water
  • 4 large baking potatoes
  • 2-3 large cloves garlic, crushed and minced.
  • 1 1/2 sticks, butter
  • 1/2 c milk
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • Salt to taste


In a medium saucepan, prepare water to boil. After washing, cut potatoes into medium-sized chunks about one inch thick, leaving on the skin. As the water begins to boil, add loosely minced garlic, salt, and pepper to boiling water. Boil the potatoes on high heat for 20-25 minutes, or until tender. When done, strain water from potatoes and return them to the pan. Add 1/2 cup of milk and butter to the potatoes then mash to medium thickness. Next, prepare steak by applying liberal amounts of Dijon mustard, rubbing it into the surface. Next, rub in about 1/2 tsp ground black pepper, 1/2 clove minced garlic and a pinch of salt to each side of steak, making sure that the seasoning is rubbed evenly around the surface of the steak. Prepare the frying pan by heating 1 T butter on medium heat. Fry the steaks in butter for about 3-5 minutes per side, or until medium rare. Dish is best when hot. Makes 2 servings.

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