October 29, 2006

Cowboy Steak

Saturday night I made a cowboy steak, which essentially is a two inch slice of a standing rib roast. We had green beens and garlic/rosemary mashed potatoes on the side.

Dry age the steak for a day by wrapping it in a towel and putting it on a plate near the top front of the fridge. I set mine on a couple of chopsticks to keep it off of the plate.

Heat up your broiler, and rub the steak with oil, salt, and minced rosemary. Broil it in a cool cast iron skillet for 5 minutes per side. Remove the steak to a plate, to rest, and season it with some pepper. In the skillet, on medium-high heat sauté some green beens and minced shallots in the pan. Remove the green beans with a slotted spoon, and toss with a dash of rice wine vinegar and salt.

Deglaze the pan with some red wine and an equal amount of broth. (I used chicken, I didn't have been handy.) Reduce the liquid by about half, turn the heat down, and stir in some cold butter (about the same amount as the wine).

Since we were splitting the steak and I have no steak knives, I sliced it into 1/2" thick slices, cut out the fatty bits, and plated it with the beans and mashed potatoes, and drizzled some of the sauce on top. I also sprinkled on a bit of grated parmesan.

The steak was good but the mashed potatoes were the star of the show.

Garlic Rosemary Mashed Potatoes
These would go well with Peach/Bourbon pork chops, Roast Chicken, Beef or Lamb steaks, or grilled, herby portobello mushrooms.
5-6 largish red potatoes
1/3 cup heavy cream
4 tbsp butter
1 handful grated parmesan
1/2 handful grated pecorino romano
1 tbsp minced, fresh rosemary
Cut the potatoes into chunks, with the skin on and boil until they are cooked through.

Meanwhile, roast the garlic cloves, skin on, in a dry cast iron skillet for about 10 minutes on high heat. The skin of the garlic should have black spots all over. Let the garlic cool.

Put the rest of the ingredients in a small pan, bring to a gentle simmer, and stir until the cheese and butter melts in. Squeeze the garlic out of the skin, smash it with the side of a knife, and add it to the pan.

Drain the potatoes, put then in a pot, pour in the cream mixture and mash together. I like to leave some chunks of potatoes for texture, so I don't mash too thoroughly. If you need more liquid, you can add some whole milk, cream, or butter.

Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Or pecorino and pepper.)

October 03, 2006


Sunday I did a tagine of lamb. I used a Bobby Flay recipe off of Food Network, probably not the best choice since it's not his area of expertise, but their kitchens tune most of their recipes. It turned out ok, but wasn't my best work. (The harissa doesn't look right either, but I don't know moroccan food.) I think it needed a bit more spice and probably could stand to cook a while longer.

I also made a ersatz papalote salsa that I found on the internet - it also was so-so. It seems to be lacking some depth, and was a bit different from the real thing. For now I think I'll stick with Rick Bayless' recipes techniques, as I've barely begun to explore his books.

We had my fajitas in a wok again last night and had Dan and Carmen over to share them with us. They were good, I used the salsa to season the rice to good effect, and also served it with the rest of the food. I also made guacamole with heirloom tomatoes, unfortunately I'd forgotten to pick up a jalapeño, but it was still good. For dessert, we made sopapillas, which I highly recommend because they are so easy to throw together. Just heat up some oil in a pan on medium high heat, fry a flour tortilla for a minute per side, dust with cinnamon and sugar, let it cool, and drizzle with honey. I usually cut them into quarters.

In other news, we've now passed plumbing and electrical inspections - we only have the final inspection left. Emily is making progress painting the house - the office is almost ready, we'll do our bedroom next.