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Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Make A Great Steak Without A Grill

Since the average temperature in February is around the freezing mark here, the grill is inaccessible. Which is really a shame, because you can make so many great foods on a grill. Steak was one of those things that I would have put in that category. So there was no steak unless it was from a restaurant at my house between November and March. I've tried the broiler route but it smokes and makes my house smell.

Lately, I've seen a few suggestions to sear the steak in an oven-safe pan, then finish cooking in the oven so I thought I would try it. This works best in a stainless steel or cast iron pan (not non-stick) and make sure the pan can go in the oven at a high temperature. You can use a grill pan if you want the grill marks but a regular pan works just as well and is much easier to clean up.

This method is not limited to just steak... it works well for many types of meat, especially thick cuts. I used a strip steak but use whatever you like best. I also added some caramelized onions and mushrooms to finish this off.

Make sure you let your steak sit at room temperature for about 20 minutes before cooking it so you are not putting cold meat into the hot pan which will make it tougher.

New York Strip Steak with Caramelized Onions and Mushrooms

2 steaks, 1 1/2 - 2" thick
Salt and pepper
1 T olive oil
1/2 onion
1/2 cup mushrooms
1 T butter
1/4 cup red wine

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Heat a large, oven safe skillet over medium-high heat until nice and hot. Rub steaks lightly with olive oil and sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper. When pan is hot, add steaks. Do not move the steaks. Cook about 4 minutes on the first side until a nice crust develops, turn once. Cook an additional 4 minutes. Immediately transfer pan to the oven. Cook an additional 5-8 minutes to desired done-ness. (Mine took about 6 minutes to get to medium, pull it out just before its done as it will continue to cook a little as it rests.)

Transfer steaks to a plate and cover with foil. In the same pan over medium low heat, add butter, onions, and mushrooms. Season with salt and pepper and add red wine to deglaze the pan. Use a wooden spoon to scrape up some of the browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Once the liquid is reduced and the onions are browned and softened, about 5 minutes, turn off the heat and pour over steaks.

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