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Meals with Family and Friends Part 4 – Pan-Seared Rib Eye Steaks with Red Wine Sauce

One of my favorite meals to eat is just a simple steak dinner. Of all the cuts, I have to say that I think my favorite of all is the rib eye. it has a little more fat than some other cuts, but this does help to give it tremendous flavor and when it is cooked just right it melts when you cut it. Serve it with a nice pan sauce and a couple of good sides and you can have an elegant meal any night of the week. I made some steaks last night when we had a friend visiting and chose to make some nice rib eye steaks I had picked up at. I just followed this simple recipe from Cook’s Illustrated and made a nice pan sauce to go on the side.

Simple Pan-Seared Steaks

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

4 (8 to 10-ounce) boneless strip steaks or rib eye steaks, 1 to 1 1/4 inches thick

Salt and pepper

1 pan sauce recipe (to follow)

Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking. Meanwhile, pat the steaks dry with paper towels and season both sides of the steaks with salt and pepper.

Lay the steaks in the pan, leaving 1/4 inch between them. Cook, without moving the steaks, until they are well browned, about 4 minutes. Using tongs, flip the steaks and continue to cook until the meat registers 115  to 120 degrees (for rare) or 120 to 125 degrees (for medium-rare), about 3 to 7 minutes. Transfer the steaks to a serving platter and tent them loosely with aluminum foil to rest while you prepare the pan sauce, if using.

Very, very simple. My preference is always to cook the steaks to about medium so they are still nice and pink inside. Letting them rest while you make the pan sauce will help them come up to just the right temperature and doneness. This particular sauce I made does require a little preparation beforehand, so you can make the wine reduction earlier before you cook the steaks.

Red Wine Pan Sauce

Wine Reduction:

1 small carrot, peeled and chopped fine (about 2 tablespoons)

1 small shallot, minced (about 2 tablespoons)

2 medium white mushrooms, chopped fine (about 3 tablespoons)

1 bay leaf

1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

1 cup red wine

Sauce:

1 medium shallot, minced (about 2 tablespoons)

1/2 cup chicken broth

1/2 cup beef broth

3 tablespoons butter, cut into 6 pieces

1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves

Ground black pepper

Salt

For the red wine reduction, heat the carrot, shallot, mushrooms, bay leaf, parsley and wine in a large nonstick skillet over low heat; cook, without simmering (the liquid should be steaming but not bubbling) until the entire mixture is reduces to 1 cup, about 15 to 20 minutes. Strain the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer and return the liquid (about 1/2 cup) to a clean skillet. Continue to cook the liquid over low heat, without simmering, until the liquid is reduced to 2 tablespoons, about 15 to 20 minutes longer. Transfer the reduction to a bowl.

For the sauce, follow the recipe for the Pan-Seared Steaks, transferring the plate with the steaks to a 200 degree oven to keep them warm. To the same skillet used to make the steaks (do not clean the skillet or discard any accumulated fat), add the shallot and cook over low heat until softened, about 1 minute. Turn the heat to high; add the chicken and beef broths. Bring the mixture to a boil, scraping up any browned bits on the pan bottom with a wooden spoon until the liquid is reduced to about 2 tablespoons, about 6 minutes. Turn the heat to medium-low, gently whisk in the reserved wine reduction and any accumulated juices from the plate with the steaks. Whisk in the butter, one piece at a time, until it is melted and the sauce is thickened and glossy; add the thyme and season with salt and pepper to taste. Spoon the sauce over the steaks and serve.

The red wine sauce for the steaks turned out very nice and adds some great flavor to the steaks. Of course, you can always skip the sauce completely and just go with the steaks, but I think it added something quite nice to the meal. I served the steaks with the fall vegetable risotto recipe I posted last week and some pan roasted asparagus and sautéed spinach,  a recipe I will post later this week. For dessert that night, we also had the fallen chocolate cake that we have made before to completely round out the meal.

That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for some more recipes. I raided the freezer this weekend and took some things out to make this week, so look for recipes using wild salmon, pizza dough, Italian sausages, boneless chicken breasts and some spare ribs, among others. Until next time, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!

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Posted by on October 21, 2013 in Beef, Cooking, Dinner, Sauce

 

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An Anniversary Dinner: Pan Seared Rib Eye Steak, Port Wine Sauce and Bacon Wrapped Shrimp

Okay, so I probably want a little overboard with dinner for our anniversary last night, but it was certainly worth it. It was a lot of work to get everything prepared and it was an awful lot of food for just the three of us (of course Sean joined us for dinner), but everything tasted great so I had nothing to complain about. I went to the store yesterday morning and picked out some nice-looking rib-eye steaks to make and with a little help from Denise Landis of The New York Times I was able to put together a quick port wine pan sauce to go with the steaks. Both were pretty easy to do.

Pan Seared Rib-eye Steaks

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
4 (8-to 10-ounce) rib-eye steaks, 1 to 1 1/4 inches thick
Salt and pepper
1 recipe Port Wine Pan Sauce (to follow)

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking. Meanwhile, pat the steaks dry with paper towels and season both sides generously with salt and pepper. Lay the steaks in the pan, leaving 1/4 inch between the steaks. Cook, without moving the steaks, until well browned, about 4 minutes. Using tongs, flip the steaks and continue to cook until the meat registers 115 to 120° (for rare) or 120 to 125° (for medium-rare), 3 to 7 minutes. Transfer the steaks to a serving platter and tent loosely with aluminum foil to rest or while preparing the pan sauce, then serve.

Port Wine Pan Sauce

1 small shallot, minced
1 small onion, minced
8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup ruby port
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme

In the same skillet that the steaks were seared in, add the shallot, onion and mushrooms. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions begin to soften, about 3 to 4 minutes. Remove the vegetables from the pan. Deglaze the pan with the ruby port, stirring to loosen any browned bits. Add the butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, and gently swirl into the sauce until well blended, about 1 to 2 minutes. Add the vegetables back into the pan, season with salt and pepper to taste, and stir in till slightly thickened about 1 to 2 minutes more. Off the heat, add in the fresh thyme and gently mix. Serve the sauce on the side with the steaks.

The steaks were cooked perfectly and have great flavor to them even though the only spices I added were salt-and-pepper. I actually cooked them for about 2 minutes longer so they were closer to medium, but you want to make them to your own personal preference. The pan sauce was just right for the steaks. I love the taste that the port wine adds to the sauce on it blended well with the shallots, onion and mushrooms. It also tasted great on the mashed potatoes that I made to go along on the side.

And the other dish that I made to go along with the meal was a very simple bacon wrapped shrimp. This doesn’t have to be a messy project or a big production; there are really only three ingredients to the entire recipe and most of the work goes into the preparation and not the cooking itself.

Bacon Wrapped Shrimp

24 large uncooked shrimp, shelled and deveined
6 slices bacon, cut into quarters
1 tablespoon Montreal Steak seasoning

Preheat the oven to 450°. Cover the bottom of a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil. Insert a wire rack into the baking sheet. Spray the baking sheet with nonstick vegetable spray. Wrap each shrimp in a 1/4 slice of bacon, being sure to wrap the bacon tightly. Secure the bacon with toothpicks if necessary. Place the shrimp on the wire rack in the baking sheet. Sprinkle the shrimp with the steak seasoning on both sides.

When the oven has come up to temperature, place the baking sheet inside the oven and bake the shrimp until opaque and the bacon has begun to crisp, approximately 10 to 15 minutes.

It doesn’t get much easier than this one. There are a couple of notes to take into mind when making this for yourself. First, make sure that you using large shrimp for this particular recipe. The size of the shrimp will take just about as long to roast in the oven as the bacon will to crisp so you won’t end up with any rubbery shrimp. If you are using smaller shrimp such as a medium-sized shrimp, you may want to think about cooking the bacon slightly before you wrap the shrimp to make sure that the bacon will be crisp at the same time the shrimp is done. You don’t have to use the steak seasoning if you don’t want to, although I think it added a nice flavor to the shrimp and the bacon. You could also use a barbecue sauce instead of the seasoning if you wanted to try something a little different. Having the shrimp up on the wire rack in the pan allows the air to get underneath and the heat to get underneath so that the bacon and the shrimp both cook on both sides. You could also put the shrimp on a skewer if you didn’t want to use toothpicks, or if you wrap the bacon tight enough, as I tried to do, you don’t really need any toothpicks at all.

I also served a side dish of roasted asparagus for the vegetable. Overall, I think it was a pretty good meal and we all seem to enjoy it. There were some leftovers of course but will be able to re-purpose them for another meal.

That’s all there is for today. Check back next time this see the recipes I use for dinner tonight. I’m hoping to get to the Ethiopian stir-fry tonight; I’m curious as to how well that one will turn out. Check back and see how it goes. Until then, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!

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Posted by on May 23, 2013 in Beef, Cooking, Dinner, Sauce, Seafood

 

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Serving Up Sicilian Steak

It was a very simple meal tonight which was great since we are in the middle of a thunderstorm and didn’t quite know if the power would hold out long enough to cook (thankfully it did). This is an easy recipe that I picked up from Williams-Sonoma and makes great use of some fresh herbs to add some great flavor to the steak. The recipe calls for rib-eye steaks, but I had bought a porterhouse on sale a few days ago and used that just fine. I am pretty sure any cut will work, so use what you like best. I served it with some corn on the cob, brown rice and some of the leftover pistachio salsa from the weekend (which is still quite yummy by the way).

Sicilian Steak

2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary

2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh thyme

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 boneless rib-eye steaks, each about 12 ounces

In a small bowl, stir together the rosemary, thyme, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, garlic and olive oil. Reserve 2 teaspoons of the herb paste.

Rub the remaining herb paste over both sides of the steaks. Let the steaks stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Preheat a cast iron fry pan over medium-high heat for 5 minutes. Place the steaks in the hot pan and cook, turning once, for 2 to 3 minutes per side for medium-rare. Transfer the steaks to a cutting board and brush the tops of the steaks with the reserved herb paste. Cover the steaks loosely with aluminum foil and let rest for 5 minutes. Slice the steaks thinly across the grain and serve immediately. Serves 4.

It’s a quick and easy dinner for a weeknight, which we love! We were also able to make use of some leftovers, which is always a good thing too. Tomorrow is Wednesday, which is my busiest day of the week, so I can’t guarantee a post tomorrow, but I’ll give it a shot :). I have a choice of things to cook, between pork chops, shrimp, ribs and burgers, so I am not sure which way I am going to go with it yet. Burgers would be the easy way out; the ribs may take more time than I have to devote on a Wednesday. We’ll see how it goes. Until then, enjoy your evening and enjoy your meal!

 
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Posted by on May 29, 2012 in Beef, Cooking, Dinner

 

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