May 29, 2004

I made steak

And it was deeeelicious. It was a center cut ranch steak that was on sale for $2.99 a pound a few weeks ago at Lowe's Foods. It's a pretty lean piece of meat, which definitely is right up my alley, and it's not super thick. I went for a two phase cooking method, based on the advice of Alton Brown. First, I seared each side for 45 seconds on a super hot pan. Then I moved it onto a baking sheet that had heated up to 500 degrees in the oven. I cooked it for 2 minutes on each side in the oven, and then let it rest for a few minutes to let the juices settle down. It was just about perfect. A nice brown crust on the outside and a warm pink middle. Let me tell you, it was medium rare done right. For Janet, I cooked it a little longer. Hers was probably more toward medium. Much less pink, which she prefers. She liked it, though, which was the shock. She spent the first 22 years of her life eating steak cooked the Joanne Kraft (her mom) way: for so long that there is no moisture left and the texture resembles patent leather shoes. It's no wonder she thought she didn't like steak. Maybe when we go to Vermont, I'll cook dinner once or twice to see if I can teach them anything. All said and done, it was a smashing success of a meal, and I'm glad I was able to pull it off. I'd never cooked a steak that way before, so I was a litle nervous, but not too much. I'd done it on the grill, and I'd done it on the George Foreman grill, but never on the stove and in the oven. Let me tell you, it was nearly as good as the grill, and way better than the George. Everything cooked on the George tastes a little bit funny to me. I don't know what it is, but steaks, chicken, and burgers don't quite have the same flavor when they've been fat reduced by George. Salmon is the exception. Salmon is good eats on the George, but everything else seems subpar, so I'm glad I am now a searing fiend.

The real kicker is the fact that I seasoned it with nothing more than salt and pepper and it tasted just fine. I may try some seasoning next time to perfect the dish, but it's not necessary.

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