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In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onions, thyme and bay leaf; season with salt and pepper. Cook, partially covered, stirring occasionally, until the onions are extremely soft and a light caramel color, 20-25 minutes. Add the wine and cook 1 minute. Add the stock and bring to a boil. Cook 1 minute, then remove from the heat and stir in the crème fraîche.
Meanwhile, heat a cast-iron skillet over medium-high. Coat the steaks with 2 tablespoons EVOO, then sprinkle with the herbes de Provence; season with salt and pepper. Using a paper towel, rub the skillet with the remaining tablespoon EVOO. Add the steaks and cook, turning once, about 8 minutes for medium-rare. Let rest 5 minutes.