20 January 2005

a killer dinner

pan-seared ny steaks

10-12 oz ny steak (about 2" thick)
kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper (you want a fairly coarse grind)
olive oil

preheat your oven to 450 degrees and place an 8"x8" pyrex baking dish on the bottom shelf. heat a well-seasoned 10" cast iron pan over med-hi to high heat. after about 5 mins, season both sides of the steak liberally with the salt and pepper. when the pan starts to smoke slightly, back heat off just a bit, and pour about a tablespoon of olive oil into the pan. using tongs and a paper towel, make a thin film of the oil on the bottom of the pan, and immediately drop the steak into the pan. have the tongs handy and watch the steak. after about a minute, take your tongs and try picking up a corner of the steak. if it comes free, flip it. but if it sticks even a little, back off and wait another 30 secs or so and try again. keep a very close eye on the steak though. the searing process is supposed to be very hot and very quick.

it should take less time on the second side. when it pulls away cleanly, pick up with tongs and place in now scorching hot pyrex dish. cook until meat thermometer reads 125 (about 10 mins, depending on the actual thickness of your steak.) for med-rare (or 118 or so for full-on rare... 135 for toast, erm.. well-done.) remove from oven and plate. let rest at least 5 minutes before cutting.

if you'd like, you could try making the...

marsala and shallot cream sauce

4 good-sized shallots, minced
2 T sweet marsala
2 T unsalted butter
3/4 c heavy whipping cream
2 T finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
salt and pepper to taste

when you remove the steak to the oven, add shallots to pan. saute briefly in the accumulated grime and, removing pan from heat (remember to use an oven mitt!) pour in the marsala. carefully place pan back over heat and add the butter. stir till melted and wine has reduced. add heavy cream, and stir frequently over high heat till reduced by one half and thickened. taste to adjust seasonings (if necessary) and add parsley. serve over steak.

sauteed spinach with garlic and prosciutto

3 T olive oil
4 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
1 bag baby spinach
1 oz chopped prosciutto
salt and pepper

heat olive oil in large pan over med-lo heat. add garlic and cook just till the edges start to get golden. add all the spinach and salt and pepper and toss well to coat. kill the heat and toss till wilted. garnish with the chopped prosciutto.

damn... it was good!

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