Friday, May 15, 2009

What's in that...Friday part II

Once in awhile the urge for beef overwhelms me and I, with not much of a push, succumb. It helps that I know the guys behind the meat counter at Milka's. They know what size steak I want, and how I don't like a lot of fat on it.They pick accordingly and we're both happy.

photo credit: Andy Clark

What can you do with a steak? Lots of things. What do I usually do? Put garlic and pepper on it and toss it on the grill or under the broiler, where it stays a very short time before it lands on my plate. I grew up with my Dad's cooking and that meant using the method for cooking steaks he called Flip Flop Moo, otherwise known as bloody rare. I've written about this before, so I won't again, but for new readers, in case it's been keeping you awake nights wondering how I like my steak, its rare rare rare rare. And just so you know, if you want a steak or hamburger rare in a restaurant in the islands? It's best to say, rare rare rare rare, then add the word bloody. That will get you anything from medium well done to medium not quite so well done unless you know the cook. Trust me on this.

But today, for two reasons, I decided to do a little bit more, though not much. One reason, hey, it's what's in that Friday! The other reason is that I have all of this stuff in the garden and it seemed to me it would taste really good on a steak. Now, why I don't grow mushrooms, don't ask. Lack of caves? Lack of...spores? Who knows. I should definitely have mushrooms for this and had I gone to the Friday Veggie Guys I'd have some. But I didn't. And it's raining again so I won't. I could go to Genesis and get canned mushrooms but I'm not that desperate.

So here we are. And here is how I made what I'm eating later on.

2 teaspoons olive oil
1 teaspoon butter
1 splash of white wine/sherry (optional)
1 hot pepper of unknown name growing in my garden (that means, choose what you like but use o hot pepper), minced
1 rehydrated dried serrano pepper (put pepper in water, it's ready when it has plumped up)

Dried serrano pepper put in enough water to *plump*

A good shake of dried chipotle pepper (or if you have fresh, lucky you, use a whole one, minced)
1/2 medium sized onion, sliced thin
3 leaves racao or 1/4 of a *bunch* of supermarket cilantro, minced
3 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced (a bulb of garlic is the whole round thing, a clove is a section of the bulb)

1 steak, 1 inch thick (approximately, don't bother with a ruler)

In a medium size skillet, add olive oil, butter and wine, heat on medium high until butter melts

Add all ingredients (except the steak) in heated oil and butter and wine, saute until garlic is slightly soft

Put one half of above mixture in a container big enough to put the steak in (a plate is fine, I just used the pan). Spread out the mixture so it the size of the steak - it doesn't have to be perfect. Place the steak on top of this. Use the rest of the mixture on top of the steak. Cover with plastic wrap or waxed paper (or, if like me you used the pan - it will still be hot - use foil) and let sit until mixture is room temperature (basically you are marinating the meat, you could put it in the fridge and leave it overnight, or use it in the next 30 minutes)

~~~At this point, normally I'd put everything on the grill with a pierced piece of foil underneath. But it's raining and I'm going to do it inside instead. I could do this under the broiler or on the stove. Today, for some reason, I'm choosing the stove. But the broiler would be fine. Your call.~~~~

Put 1/2 mixture under steak and 1/2 on top in whatever you use to cook the steak, stove or oven broiler or grill. After 5 minutes (or longer if you like your meat more well done) flip to the other side. Well, flip gently (I used a fork) or you will have a big mess. Cook the same amount of time. And it's done!

This is great with any green or yellow vegetable and/or a potato. A salad is works too.


  1. That recipe begs for a glass of Altos de la Hoya monastrell from Jumilla, Spain. I loves me some Spanish wine, these days. BTW, ever heard of Pittsburg rare? Evidently, steelworkers would take a frozen steak to work and at lunchtime, toss it on the outside surface of the blast furnaces, heated super-hot by oxygen stoked coke inside. The result was a blood-rare inside surrounded by a crusty outside.

    One last...did you ever go to Bern's Steakhouse in Tampa? They offer four different degrees of rare on their menu. Also their wine list resembles a phone book from a medium sized city. Wifey won $120 at the dog track once (pooch's name was Vibrator ?!?), and we made a bee-line for Bern's. m-m-m-m-m.

  2. I've got to meet your wife one of these days! Luckily, it's only 8 something in the morning so my wine & steak taste buds only got slightly excited reading your comment (except for tea or rarely, coffee, the thought of food (wine is a food, right?) before 10 or 11 in the morning doesn't thrill me.

    I knew there was something about steelworker's I liked beside the obvious...

    I've heard of Bern's but the only place I remember eating in Tampa was is Columbia, a fabulous Cuban place I go to anytime I'm on that coast.