Yield: 2-4 servings
2 (12 ounce) Ribeye or NY Strip Steaks, 1.5 inches thick
- 1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- A few sprigs of rosemary and thyme
- 4 cloves of garlic, lightly crushed but still in their skin
- 1 shallot, quartered
- 1-2 tablespoons avocado or grapeseed oil
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
Red Wine Sauce:
1 medium shallot, finely diced
2 tablespoons cognac
1/3 cup dry red wine
1/3 cup beef or roasted chicken stock
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold
1-2 tablespoons chopped chives
Flaky sea salt
Preheat a cast iron skillet on the stove over low heat for 5-10 minutes. Season steak, generously, with salt and pepper while the skillet is heating. Turn the skillet up to medium high heat and add 1-2 tablespoons of oil in the pan, enough to evenly coat the bottom of the pan. Carefully lay steaks into the pan. Sear on one side for about 5 minutes. Check to see if an even golden crust has formed. If so, flip the steak. Add garlic, quartered shallots, rosemary, thyme, and room temperature butter into the pan. When butter is melted, tip pan so the butter runs to one side. Use a spoon to scoop up butter and baste the steak. Continue to cook until steak hits desired internal temperature, remove from pan and allow to rest while making the sauce.
For the sauce, pour out butter, herbs, garlic, and shallots. Place the pan back on the stove with the heat turned off. Add the diced shallots and stir. The residual heat in the pan will cook them. Once the shallots have softened, turn heat back on to medium high. When the pan is hot, turn the heat off, stir in cognac and scrape the bottom of the pan. (Note: You can light the cognac if you want, but it is not necessary. Use a long match or lighter. Be careful and don’t look over the pan when you do) Once the cognac cooks down buy about half, turn heat back up to medium high and add in red wine. Cook wine until it becomes syrupy in consistency then add in the stock. Reduce the stock buy about half, turn the heat to low. Add in the cold butter in one tablespoon chunks. Continue to stir butter as it melts into the sauce. When butter has completely melted, turn heat up to medium. Cook the sauce until it is thick enough to coat a spoon. Season with salt and pepper.
To serve, Carve the the steak into 1/2 inch slices and place on a platter. Spoon sauce over the steak. Sprinkle with chopped chives and flaky sea salt.
- Best method to check the temperature is using a thermometer. But if you don’t have one here is a non-scientific cheat. On your off hand, place your index finger and thumb together. Use your other hand to poke the meaty part of your thumb. That is what rare steak feels like. Middle finger and thumb is a medium rare steak. Ring finger and thumb is medium. Please don’t get to the pinky and thumb.
- Always undercook the steak by about ten degrees. When the steak rests it will continue to cook and increase the internal temperature by about 10 degrees. The resting period also allows the juices to redistribute through the steak. If you cut into the steak without resting, all the juices will run out leaving a dry piece of meat.
- To build a better side crust, sear the fatty side of the steak first. Place the steak fat cap side down in the preheated pan, with no oil. Press down on the steak to make sure the whole side of the steak is in contact with the pan. Sear the side for 1-2 minutes, then lay the steak flat and continue the cooking process.
- Butter: Room temperature butter for basting so the milk solids in the butter don’t burn right away in the hot pan. Cold butter for the sauce so the milk solids and the fat don’t separate too quickly, creating an oil slick on the sauce.
- If you are using store bought stock, try to find the lowest sodium option. Because the sauce gets reduced down the sodium content will intensify. Hold off on seasoning the sauce with salt and pepper so it does not become overly salty. Taste and adjust the season. A couple drops of lemon juice can also brighten the sauce.