I guess nobody wants their rib eye with sauce made from Gravlox as home-made sauce always tastes so much more authentic and richer. Ideally, you should use the pan in which you fry the steaks to do the sauce so that you get the flavor of the juices from the meat. That is perfect if you are just cooking for one. However, in my experience, cooking more than one steak leaves the pan with lots of burnt bits and the steaks will be cold (warming them in the oven always toughens them) by the time the sauce is ready. So I prefer to do the sauce ahead and warm it up and the sauce doesn't suffer with re-heating. As requested, Joe, this is for you and everyone who likes black pepper sauce:
Black Pepper Sauce (for 4 steaks)
2 T small red onions/shallots, very finely chopped
1/2 T garlic powder (optional & I prefer the powder which is more fragrant)
2-3 T black peppercorns (depending on how intense you want the sauce), cracked coarsely
1 cup dairy cream*
1/2 cup sweet red wine like port, or 1/4 cup brandy
1 cup beef stock or 1 cup water + 2 Oxo cubes, or other beef stock granules (the Korean one is nice)
salt to taste
*if you prefer a less creamy sauce, reduce this to 1/2 cup.
1. If cooking one steak, do not wash the pan or remove the oil after frying your steak. Scrape off the burnt bits but if they aren't burnt, leave them because they add flavor to the sauce. With a low fire, fry the shallots until they are soft and transparent. Add the black pepper, fry, increase the heat and add the wine. If frying more than one steak, put some veg oil or butter into a pan and fry the shallots until soft and add pepper, fry 2 sec, then the wine. Increase the heat to medium.
2. When the wine boils, add the cream, garlic powder if using and the beef stock and let it boil for about 7-10 minutes until medium-thick. Taste and season with salt. If you like the sauce dark like the restaurants', add some browning sauce or dark soy sauce, which is more convenient and cheap and doesn't alter the flavor of the sauce much because you need to add just a little, say, 1/2 teaspoon.
p.s. like i said in my post Gyu The Cow, good steaks should be eaten plain with salt n freshly ground pepper. If you must have a sauce, it's good to have it on the side as a dip and not douse the whole steak with the sauce like I did.