After plans for a Restaurant Week steak dinner needed to be postponed, the craving for steak still lingered. I quickly decided if I couldn’t go to a steakhouse, the steakhouse would come home to me.
Getting off work at 9 leaves very little time to plan, grocery shop and execute a high level steak dinner. These few tricks and steps will allow you to have an amazing dinner in very little time, for very little cost.
I first ventured to the meat department at Fairway for inspiration. Ultimately, after comparing prices and sizes, and I decided to purchase a medium sized piece of Hanger Steak, for $5.89, which would allow me to have left overs for the next day’s lunch. I then made my way to the produce selection, eying beautiful, plump yukon gold and purple potatoes. I picked up 4 of each, and filling a plastic bag with fresh, peppery arugula, before heading to the bakery. I decided I would make my steak in the form of a sandwich, picking out a fresh onion roll, a game day favorite of mine. Finally, I made my way to the cheese section. I love the combination of blue cheese and steak, and this would be a great addition to my sandwich. I asked for 4oz of Stilton, an English Blue Cheese, which I find to have a milder taste then other blue cheeses, still giving the necessary flavor without being overly pungent.
Finally, I made my way to the check out counter, with all of my ingredients totaling a little over $15. Not too shabby for two days worth of steak dinners.
Once home, I immediately got to work on marinating the steak. I generously coated both sides with kosher salt, which is extremely important for bring out all of the flavor. A little pinch of black pepper made its way on each side, despite my hatred for the spice, you can hardly taste it after marinating. My short-cut for an Asian Marinated Steak in very little time, is Soyaki, which is sold at all Trader Joe’s stores. It’s a combination between a teryaki sauce and a sesame glaze, giving wonderful flavor to any meat or poultry, with very little effort. I placed the steak in the fridge, flipping it over every 5 minutes or so, while I started to prep the potatoes.
I washed my purple and yukon gold potatoes well, and then sliced then into quarters, and sixths for the larger pieces. Then, I placed them into a bowl and added one sliced shallot and loosely minced garlic. Finally, I added 2 tablespoons of olive oil and a generous pinch of kosher salt. In a pre-heated oven, at 375º, I placed the potatoes on a lined baking sheet to roast for about 20-25 minutes, until golden brown. As soon as one side starts to brown, with a spatula, mix up the potatoes to avoid burning.
Next, onto cooking the steak. It’s very important to preheat your grill pan for about 10 minutes before using. You want it to be extremely hot, so the steak immediately sizzles upon contact, giving it that wonderful crust you desire from any steak house. Cook each side of the steak for about 5 minutes to obtain that gorgeous pink, medium rare color.
The most important step in cooking a steak, is to allow the steak to sit for about 5-10 minutes after cooking. I know you’re very anxious to begin eating, but the flavor will be radically different if you slice right after taking the steak off the grill. When you let the steak sit, it retains all of the wonderful juices and flavors.
Finally, it’s time to plate. I quickly whip together an easy lemon vinaigrette to dress the arugula. While the grill is still hot, slice the onion roll and place it onto the grill to achieve a light, brown color and necessary grill marks. Take the Stilton Blue Cheese and crumble it onto the top half of the bread. Put the oven on broil and place the bread inside for about 30 seconds, allowing for the blue cheese to slightly melt to a gooier consistency. Slice the steak carefully against the grain, and place onto the bottom half of the bread. And Voila!
Bon Appetite! This dinner is so much easier to complete then you would image, and hits the spot every single time you are craving that steakhouse quality meal. Of course, there are no white linen table clothes and I definitely missed the delicious creamed spinach, but for a last minute plan, this whole meal came together from start to finish in under an hour. Ideally, if you have all day to marinate your steak, the impact is much more powerful, but the Soyaki does inject flavor very quickly, hitting the spot when you don’t have all day. You will definitely step back after making this meal, feeling as if you accomplished something worthy of any great steakhouse.