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Preheat the grill to high.
In a shallow bowl or Ziploc bag, combine the white balsamic vinegar, honey, peppercorns, and black pepper. Place the steaks of watermelon in the mixture and let sit for at least 10 minutes or until you are ready to grill.
In a small saucepot, place grapefruit rinds in cold water and bring to a boil. When the grapefruit rinds come to a boil, strain the rinds and repeat 3 times, reserve, and cool the rinds. In a blender, purée the blanched grapefruit rinds and slowly add in the olive oil, mustard, and salt until thickened; if it becomes too thick, add some of the grapefruit juice from the segments. Set the grapefruit essence aside.
Lightly oil the watermelon steaks and place them on the grill to slightly caramelize the steak. Cook for 4 minutes or until the grill marks stand out.
In a large bowl, mix the jicama, radish, tarragon sprigs, cherry tomatoes, asparagus, and grapefruit segments. Toss with some of the grapefruit essence and season to taste.
Serve the grilled watermelon on top of the Jicama Slaw and finish by drizzling the grapefruit essence around the watermelon steak.
Pork Chop au Poivre
Pepper's been around for about 2,000 years, but it doesn't look a day over 250, if you ask us. It still looks good and it still tastes great, especially covering these pork chops with their coarse offerings. The pepper is augmented by a classic demi-and-wine sauce, with butter swirled in for extra richness. And if pepper is as familiar as the sun and the stars, slightly unique sides may, in fact, steal the show: soft and inviting acorn squash and fresh Swiss chard. Old, new, peppery, and blue (nothing is blue in this meal), this dinner is an all-encompassing classic.
TAJ CAPE TOWN’S HISTORIC CITY CENTER BUILDINGS CELEBRATED IN STYLE
Taj Hotels, Resorts and Palaces Creates a Contemporary Luxury Hotel While Preserving the Past
A year ago, few people could have imagined that two historic buildings in the Cape Town city center would host international investors, local business leaders and celebrities at the grand opening of a five-star Taj hotel.
Ratan Tata, chairman of Tata Sons, RK Krishnakumar, executive director of Tata Sons and vice chairman Indian Hotels Company Limited, and Raymond Bickson, managing director and chief executive of Indian Hotels, officially inaugurated the Taj Cape Town at a red-carpet event on Saturday, August 28, 2010.
"We are delighted to announce our foray into South Africa with Taj Cape Town," said Raymond Bickson, speaking at the ceremony. "This is in sync with our strategy to continue our vision of growth in key international destinations. Cape Town is an increasingly popular tourist and business destination and this is yet another step towards establishing a significant presence for brand Taj across the globe with its exemplary combination of product and service."
Joint venture partners Tata’s Taj Hotels Resorts & Palaces and city center developers Eurocape spent two years and over R500 million (US$69 million) restoring the original South African Reserve Bank and Temple Chambers buildings.
Eurocape successfully developed the neighboring Mandela Rhodes Place and is actively pursuing a project to create a multi-billion rand mixed-use development in the inner-city. Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces has considerable experience in marking and operating iconic city center hotels. Its portfolio includes The Pierre in New York, 51 Buckingham Gate in London and its flagship property, the Taj Mahal Palace in Mumbai.
Maxim Cookbook: 15 Boozy Meat Recipes
1. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over a medium high flame. Add the garlic, cumin, onion, red pepper, and salt and cook, stirring frequently, until the onions and garlic are soft and translucent (about 15 minutes). Do not allow the garlic to brown add a few tablespoons of water if necessary.
2. Add the espresso, vinegar, and whiskey and bring to a boil.
3. Transfer to a blender and blend on high until smooth (be careful when blending hot liquids).
4. Add the blended mix back into the pot and whisk in the brown sugar and ketchup until fully incorporated and smooth. Refrigerate until needed.
1 small onion, finely diced
1 cup bourbon barbecue sauce, recipe below
2 tablespoons Maker’s Mark® Bourbon
1. Preheat the oven to 450ଏ. Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a medium frying pan over a high heat. When it begins to smoke add the onions and sauté over a high flame, stirring frequently until they are soft and well browned (about 10 minutes). Remove to a tray and cool in the fridge.
2. Combine all of the ingredients except for the rest of the olive oil in a large mixing bowl and mix by hand until thoroughly incorporated.
3. Drizzle the olive oil into a large baking dish (9” x 13”), making sure to evenly coat the entire surface (use your hand to help spread the oil).
4. Roll the mixture into round, golf ball-sized meatballs making sure to pack the meat firmly.
5. Place the balls into the oiled baking dish such that all of the meatballs are lined up evenly in rows and are touching each of their four neighbors in a grid.
6. Roast until firm and cooked through (about 20 minutes).
7. Allow the meatballs to cool for five minutes before removing from the tray.
BOURBON MARINATED HANGAR STEAK
Prep Time: 12 hours before eating
1/2 cup Maker’s Mark® Bourbon
6 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
1 teaspoon fresh ginger, finely grated or minced
1 teaspoon garlic, pressed or minced
1 tablespoon shallots, minced
1 pound hangar or skirt steak, trimmed
1/4 cup heavy cream or veal stock (optional)
1. To make the marinade, combine ingredients in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and simmer for 1 minute. Pour the marinade into a shallow dish large enough to hold the meat and set aside to cool.
2. Add the beef to the cooled marinade, stir to evenly coat, and refrigerate overnight for no more than 12 hours.
3. Dry the beef with paper towels. Heat a large pan/skillet over high heat. Sear the beef 3 minutes on each side for medium rare, remove from the pan, and rest meat. Cook down excess marinade as a pan sauce whisking a little cream or veal stock in at the end. Slice and serve.
BLACK CHERRY & JÄGERMEISTER BABY BACK RIBS
By Chris Santos, Owner and Executive Chef of The Stanton Social
4 racks of baby back ribs
2 red onions, peeled, thinly sliced
4 cups bbq sauce (see pulled pork recipe)
1/2 cup smokedlack pepper
1 cup Sriracha (or favorite hot sauce)
1. For the rub: Combine all of the ingredients.
Rub the ribs thoroughly so that all surfaces are covered.
2. Preheat oven to 300ꃞgrees and heat a grill tohigh. Grill the ribs on both sides to create a nice charਊnd smoky flavor.
3. In a hotel pan slice the oranges and layer the orange slices and mint leaves on top of the ribs. Stack the ribs on top of one another.
4. Combine the BBQ sauce, orange juice, and Jägermeister and pour over the ribs.
5. Scatter the sliced onions over the ribs and then fill the hotel pan with blackherry cola until the ribs are nearly covered.
6. Place the hotel pan on the stove over low/medium heat until the liquid comes to a simmer. Cover with parchment paper and tinfoil and simmer in the-degree oven for aboutਂ𠄳 hours. Ribs should be tender and almost fall off of the bone.
7. Remove ribs from the liquidਊnd place on a cooling rack.
8. Serve with additional Jägermeister BBQ Sauce.
12 each "mini" pork shanks (about 3-4 oz each)
salt and pepper as needed
8-10 cups soybean oil for frying
1/2 cup whole grain mustard
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon favorite hot sauce
In large skillet, add 2-3 tablespoons olive oil. Season mini pork shanks with salt and pepper, add pork shanks to skillet and brown on all sides. Once brown, transfer to casserole dish or shallow roasting dish. Add onions, carrots, celery, and garlic to skillet, cook until softened about 5 minutes. Add wine, bring to boil and reduce, add chicken stock and simmer, season liquid. Pour chicken stock mixture over pork shanks, slightly submerging pork in liquid. Add bay leaf and thyme to dish and cover with foil. Braise in oven at 325 degrees for about 45 minutes or until pork is very tender. Allow pork to rest in liquid and cool completely. Once chilled remove shanks from liquid and clean shanks of any liquid, slightly pat dry. Strain pork liquid, and save for soup or gravy base.
In large dutch oven, or heavy bottomed pan, add soybean oil for frying. Heat oil to 350 degrees. Add pork shanks in batches, turning on all sides until brown and slightly crispy. Remove crispy "pig wings" from oil and season with salt and pepper while hot. In mixing bowl, add mustard glaze, toss to coat "pig wings" evenly. Serve immediately with favorite dipping sauces and crudité.
BURGER WITH KNOB CREEK® CARAMELIZED ONIONS, GRUYERE & HORSERADISH
Recipe by Celebrity Chef Michael Symon
4 slices of Gruyere cheese
4 tablespoons freshly grated horseradish
1.Season burgers liberally with salt and pepper
2.Place burger on grill and cook to the preferred doneness
3.Top with onions then cheese
4.Once cheese is melted place on toasted bun and top with fresh horseradish and serve
Knob Creek® Bourbon Caramelized Onions
1 Yellow onion, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons whole unsalted butter
1.In a 12 inch sauté pan heat 2 tablespoons butter until melted over medium heat.
2.Add onions and a pinch of salt and slowly cook for 10-15 minutes until onions become golden.
3.Turn up heat to medium high and add Knob Creek® Bourbon.
4.Simmer for 2-3 minutes and set aside.
KNOB CREEK® BOURBON SMOKEY, SALTY & SPICY GRILLED CHICKEN THIGHS
Recipe by Celebrity Chef Michael Symon
8 Chicken thighs (bone-in and skin-on)
2 Tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 Limes cut into wedges for garnish
1 Bunch cilantro for garnish
1.Whisk together mustard, soy sauce, honey, Knob Creek® Bourbon, Sriracha and olive oil.
2.Place chicken thighs in a zip lock bag and pour in marinade. Give it a good shake and let marinate for one to two hours.
3.Place on grill and cook until you reach 160 degrees internal temperature.
4.Remove from grill and garnish plate with lime wedges and cilantro.
[pagebreak]GRILLED SKIRT STEAK WITH A BALSAMIC, CHERRY & KNOB CREEK® BOURBON STEAK SAUCE
Recipe by Celebrity Chef Michael Symon
1.Let the steak come to room temperature by removing them from the fridge a half an hour to an hour prior to cooking
2.Season steaks liberally with oil, salt & pepper and set aside
3.Place steaks on grill and cook to desired level
4.Slice against the grain and top with steak sauce and arugula
Balsamic, Cherry, & Knob Creek® Steak Sauce
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
4 oz. of Knob Creek® Bourbon
1.In a non-reactive pan add balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, Knob Creek® Bourbon, dried cherries and a pinch of salt.
2.Reduce by half over high heat.
3.Remove from heat, and let chill to serve on steak.
MAKER’S MARK® BOURBON KOBE BEEF BURGER
By Hiassam and Ali Beydoun, Owners and Chefs, Frites N’Meats
4 six-ounce Kobe beef hamburger patties (regular ground beef can be substituted)
1/2 cup plus 2 teaspoons Maker’s Mark® Bourbon
4 cloves garlic, finely minced
4 pieces plum tomatoes, cut in half lengthwise
2 teaspoons fresh thyme, minced
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 large onions, cut in half and thinly sliced with the grain
4 soft hamburger buns, preferablybrioche
1. Marinate the burger patties Place them in a shallow baking dish and pour a 1/2 cup of Maker’s Mark® Bourbon over the burgers. Sprinkle the patties with 1/4 of the minced garlic. Refrigerate for two hours, then flip the patties sprinkle with another 1/4 of the garlic. Refrigerate another two hours.
2. While the burgers are marinating, preheat the oven to 300ଏ. Place the cut tomato halves on a parchment lined sheet tray, cut side up. Brush the tomatoes lightly with olive oil and season with salt, pepper, the minced thyme, and the remaining minced garlic. Place in the oven and allow the tomatoes to slow roast for about 1 1/2-2 hours until they are slightly dehydrated and begin to color. Once the tomatoes have cooled, sprinkle 1 teaspoon of Maker’s Mark® Bourbon over the tomatoes. Refrigerate until needed.
3. While the tomatoes are cooking, caramelize the onions. Heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat and add the vegetable oil and onions to the pan. Season the onions with salt and cook until they begin to soften, stirring often, about 10 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium and cook for 15 minutes more until they begin to break down more and color slightly. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook the onions, stirring occasionally, for roughly 2 hours, or until the onions caramelize deep golden brown. Add water to the pan as necessary if the onions begin to stick to the pan. Once the onions are cooked, transfer to a small container and stir in 1 teaspoon of Maker’s Mark® Bourbon. Refrigerate until needed.
4. Heat the grill, grill pan, or griddle to high heat. Remove the burgers from the marinade, lightly brush both sides with olive oil, and season well with salt and pepper. Cook your burgers to desired doneness.
5. To assemble, lightly toast bun if desired. Add the burger patty and top with caramelized onions and two pieces of tomatoes. Enjoy!
[pagebreak]JÄGERMEISTER-CARAMEL GLAZED & GRILLED PORK TENDERLOIN WITH VIDALIA CRISPS
By Chris Santos, Owner and Executive Chef of The Stanton Social
1/2 cup ancho chili powder
2 Vidalia onions, thinly sliced
1. In a tall-rimmed dish, dissolve sugar and salt in hot water. Add the ancho chili powder, cold water and ice. Pour over the pork and brine, and then cover in refrigerator for 2 hours. Rinse the tenderloin after brining and trim the fat.
2. For the caramel sauce: Put sugar in a saucepan over medium heat and add justnough water for the sugar toissolve. Caramelize the sugarਊnd then shock with the creamਊnd Jägermeister. Bring toਊ boil. Take off the heat and season with the ancho powder.
3. Preheat oven to 350 degreesਊnd heat a grill to high. Grill the pork on each side until you have a nicely charred exterior.rush evenly with the caramel sauce and finish cooking for about 8 minutes in the oven until medium rare or meat thermometer reads an internal temperature of 135 degrees.ਊllow carry-over heat to bring to 145 degrees. Let rest for 5 minutes before slicing.
4. For the Vidalia crisps: Season the onions with salt and pepper.redge the onions in the flour. Heat the vegetable oil until 350ꃞgrees. Deep fry the onion strings until they are goldenrown. Remove onto a vented surface and immediately season with salt.
5. Serve sliced pork. Garnish with Vidalia crisps, microilantro, and sea salt.
JÄGERMEISTERꂻQ𠆝 PULLED PORK SLIDERS
By Chris Santos, Owner and Executive Chef of The Stanton Social
12 slider buns (brioche or potato)
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. adobo sauce (can ofhipotles, use sauce theyਊre packed in)
1/2 cup red pepper, julienned
1/2 cup yellow pepper, julienned
1. In a large mixing bowl combine all of the dry rub ingredients and mix well. Score the porkutt. In a separate bowl, pour the olive oil/Jägermeister mix over the butt and rub it to coat. the entire dry rub and rub aggressively. Refrigerate covered overnight.
2. For the bbq sauce: Sauté the onions in olive oil until translucent. Add the honey and therown sugar. Allow the honey, brown sugarਊnd onions to come to a boil and simmer for
about 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and add the Jägermeister, ketchup, molasses, Worcestershire sauce, Dijon mustard and cider vinegar. Stir wellਊnd bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and allow to cook for 2 hours. Add coffee and coffee grinds. Simmer for 4 hours, stirring continuously. Add thehipotle and the adobo sauce. In a blender, blend the sauce and season with salt and pepper. Strain through a china cap and allow to cool.
3. For the jicama slaw: Use the lime juice to first preserve the color of the avocado. Then, combine of all of the ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
4. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees and heat grill to high. Char the pork on the grill on both sides. Then, slather the pork in 2 cups of the bbq sauceਊnd place in a deep half-hotel pan. Fill the hotel pan with chicken stock until the butt is mostlyovered. Bring the liquid to a simmer on the stove-top over medium/high heat. Cover with parchment paper and tinfoil and finish cooking in the oven for 2.5𠄳 hours or until the pork meatꃊn be loosened with a gentle tug of a fork.
5. Allow the pork to cool in the braising liquid. Pull the pork and place into a separate bowl. Mix with the remaining bbq sauce until the pork is moist and saturated.
6. Portion approximately 4 ounces of pulled porkਏor each slider bun and top with the jicama slaw.
JÄGERMEISTER GRILLED STEAK
By Chris Santos, Owner and Executive Chef of The Stanton Social
2 lbs. Boneless Ribeye steaks
1 cup Worcestershire sauce
2 tbsp. ground black pepper
1 1/4 cup blended oil (store bought)
1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
Mix together and hold at room temperature to brush onto steaks on the grill.
Jägermeister Grilled Steak Procedure
1. For the marinade: In aਏood processor, combine all of the marinade ingredients. Slowly add the oil until the marinade is emulsified. Marinate your Ribeye steaksਏor up to 24 hours.
2. For the glaze: Combine the balsamic vinegar and Jägermeister in a sauce pot. Simmer on low heat until the mixture is reduce by 3/4 (1/2 cup of glaze should be remaining).
3. Heat grill to medium/high, grill your steaks on both sides,rushing often with softened Jägermeister butter, 4𠄵 minutes total on each side until cooked toꃞsired temperature.
4. When the steaks are cooked,ਊllow them to cool. When cooled, slice the steaks against the grainਏor serving. There should beꂫout 8 oz. per serving. Drizzleoth Jägermeister butter and Jägermeister glaze over the steaks and sprinkle.
5# beef flat iron ( medium diced)
In a hot pan roast the beef until golden brown. Add the carrot celery and onion and cook until tender. Add the red wine and reduce by half. Finally add the veal stock and cook until the sauce has reached a thick sauce like consistency. Strain the sauce through a fine sieve and reserve.
Season the steak heavily with salt and pepper and then using a hot grill, cook both sides of the steak for about 4-5 minutes, until the steak has reached a temperature of medium rare. When the steak is cooked let it rest for five minutes before serving.
GRILLED PORK BELLY WITH RAZOR CLAMS, BLACK GARLIC & ROASTED CHILIES
By Matthew Jennings, Chef/Owner of Farmstead
One three-pound slab of fresh pork belly, cleaned & trimmed by your butcher, skin-on if available
1 can Narragansett beer or other lager
A pinch of white peppercorns
1 leek, halved, top trimmed off
1 small white onion, peeled, cut in half
2 carrots, peeled, cut in half
1 ½ cups chicken stock (pork or vegetable works too)
Black Garlic Vinaigrette Ingredients
1 cup plus 1 tablespoon canola oil
5 cloves of black garlic (can be purchased at Asian markets- use roasted garlic if you can’t find it)
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
Pinch of chopped fresh herbs- use thyme, rosemary, sage
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon squid ink (can be purchased from local fishmonger)
Cracked white or black pepper to taste
1 dozen fresh, living razor clams (you can of course substitute a different clam)
Roasted Fresno chilies for garnish
The night before, brine the pork. In one pot, add the cold water, brown sugar, salt, juniper berries, rosemary, beer, bay leaf and peppercorns. Bring to a boil and then immediately turn off. Allow the brine to cool completely – this is very important. Brine must be cool to the touch.
Once the brine is cool, submerge the three pound chunk of pork belly, in a Tupper ware container or large bowl, allowing it to be completely submerged. Place a small plate or bowl on top of it to weigh it down if necessary. Place in your refrigerator. Your job for today is done.
The next morning, pre-set the oven to 300 degrees F and remove the pork from the brine. Rinse it, pat it dry and set it aside. Discard the brine. If the belly still has the skin on, at this time you can very carefully score the skin – but don’t cut your fingers off.
Next, in a casserole dish or deep baking dish, place the leeks, onion and carrots on the bottom of the pan. Pour in the stock so that it comes about 1/3 of the way up the sides of the pan. If you need to add more, do so.
Gently nestle the pork belly on top of the ‘mirepoix’ vegetables (leek, onion and carrot). Cover the roasting pan in a layer of plastic wrap and then a layer of aluminum foil. Place the roasting pan into the oven and cook slowly at 300 degrees until fork tender (1-½ hours). Don’t worry – the plastic won’t melt.
While the pork is cooking, make your vinaigrette:
Into a food processor, add the black garlic, mustard, sherry vinegar, fresh herbs, freshly squeezed lemon juice, squid ink, teaspoon kosher salt and cracked white or black pepper. Turn on the processor to high. Slowly drizzle in the cup of blended or canola oil to emulsify and make a thick vinaigrette. Set aside.
When tender, remove from oven and unwrap carefully as to not give yourself a steam burn! Tenderly remove belly from pan using two spatulas, rest on a cookie sheet, cover with a fresh piece of plastic wrap and press under the weight of another pan. Allow to cool this way. Light the grill, medium heat.
Once cool, drizzle the 1 tablespoon of canola oil over the pork, transfer the pork belly slab to the grill and gently grill over medium heat to mark and char the outside. Simultaneously, place the razor clams or other clams directly on the grill so they start to open up. As they open, move them to cooler spot of the grill so you don’t overcook them.
Remove the charred belly from the grill to rest and place the cooked clams in a non-reactive bowl. Slice the pork belly into thick cut, 4-6 ounce portions. Place on a platter. Drizzle the black garlic vinaigrette over the clams, pour this mixture over the pork belly and garnish with small roasted Fresno chilies & fried garlic if desired.
My Best Fillet Steak Recipe – Steak Au Poivre (Peppercorn Steak)
Firstly…Apologies if Steak Au Poivre sounds pompous, I’m a big fan of Adam Reed’s animated comedy series Archer And I couldn’t bring myself to call it anything else, other fans will know what I’m talking about. Anyway this classic French dish dates back a lot longer than my taste in cartoons and will be my last in a series of four steak recipes. If you haven’t been following along you can find Rump, Sirloin and Rib-Eye here. This recipe shouldn’t be too difficult for anybody who spends time in the kitchen, Perfect for date night!
Get Your Favourite Cut.
The three main cuts of beef are sirloin, rib-eye and rump. The rump has the beefiest flavour followed by the sirloin and then the rib-eye. The rib-eye is the most tender, followed by the sirloin and then the rump. I’ll mention fillet steak as well, this super lean steak is very mild in flavour but very tender. It’s also by far the most expensive cut, a bit of a con if you ask me. It’s also important to bear in mind how you liked your steak cooked, sirloin is quite flexible where-as rib-eye is better cooked medium. Rump only needs to be flash fried otherwise it risks becoming too tough.
Get A Good Quality Steak.
Start with a good piece of meat, sounds obvious right? A lot of people, restaurant owners & buyers get suckered in to spending £4 on a bargain bit of leather, instead of treating themselves to a £5 slice of quality. That said, you don’t need to pay over the odds for steak either, I’ve seen supermarket steaks for £10! I use a butcher in the midlands who won England’s best sirloin prize in 2015 and they sell them for £5.60ish. Find a decent butcher in your area and trust them, they’ll be happy to help you hand pick the best steak and be grateful for your business. When picking your steak, you’re looking for a good ratio of fat to meat. Try and find a piece with 5-10mm of fat down one side and a fair amount of marbling (intramuscular fat).
Temperature And Seasoning.
Your steak wants to be at room temperature before you cook it. I take my steak out the fridge before I go to work and cook it when I get home. An hour or two out of the fridge will be fine, this is to help the steak cook evenly. To season your steak just a good quality salt and pepper will do. We’re looking to amplify the flavour of the steak not change it. As a rule of thumb use more salt than you think necessary and less pepper. Dry your steak with kitchen paper and season both sides 40 minutes to an hour before cooking. It’s very important you leave the steak for at least 40 minutes, otherwise, the steak hasn’t had enough time to reabsorb the moisture that the seasoning has dragged out. If you don’t have 40 minutes to spare, then you’re better seasoning immediately before cooking. If you want to add flavours like garlic and rosemary, then add these to the fat not the steak itself. I’ll go over this more in the recipe.
Cooking And Cooking With Fat
Different cuts of steak require a different method of cooking, again sounds obvious right? I’ll write an in-depth recipe for each steak but… cook sirloin and rump on a griddle pan, rib-eye in a frying pan then finished in the oven, and fillet in a frying pan. What this means for fat is
that you want to rub your sirloin and rump with olive oil before seasoning. while rib eye and fillets are better cooked in a pan of butter.
The fattier the cut of beef, the hotter you’ll need your pan. We want the fat to render down and flavour the meat throughout the rest of the cooking process. Your pan needs to be very hot for rump and sirloin. For rib-eye and fillet a more medium heat will do.
Cooking Your Steak How You Like It
Hopefully you’ve chosen a piece of steak that reflects how you liked it cooked – as we mentioned earlier. To get your steak cooked perfectly I recommend using an instant read thermometer, removing your steak from the heat 2-3 degrees before it hits the desired temperature, as it’ll carry on cooking for a few seconds after you remove it.
• For rare your steak needs to be 56 C 130 F
• For medium rare 63 C 145 F
• For medium 71 C 160F
• And for well done 77 C 170 F
Alternatively, if you want to time your cook:
• For rare cook for 2 minutes either side
• For medium rare cook for 3 minutes either side
• For medium cook for 4 minutes either side
• For well done cook for 5 minutes either side
Rest Your Steak
Once your steak is cooked it’s important to take it away from any heat and leave to rest. This is because the meat is ‘tense’ at the minute from the heat and cutting into it would release all the juices, resulting in dry steak. Resting it for a few minutes allows the moisture to redistribute and remain in the steak once cut. Rest a rare steak for 5 minutes and a well-done steak for 2 minutes, a medium steak somewhere in-between.
Pick The Perfect Sides
What you serve your steak with is super important. You’ve just gone to all the effort of getting a hold of the best cut and cooking it perfectly, let’s finish our plate with just as much effort. for me the best way to serve fillet steak is with peppercorn sauce, mustard mash, peas and kale.
A coworker recently shared an online article from the Wall Street Journal called “Grills Gone Wild“. The article was about the new trend of grilling, well, just about anything. It talks about how chefs are trying to top one another by choosing the most unusual things to grill (strawberries, caesar salads, rice balls?!). One that I found particularly interesting, tasty and applicable to Florida’s season is grilled watermelon. Yes, you heard me right. Grilled watermelon.
Here’s the somewhat fancy but very delicious-sounding recipe, created by Chef Phil Deffina of Highpoint Bistro & Bar in New York.
Grilled Watermelon au Poivre
Carve a 1½-inch-thick slice from the center of a seedless watermelon and marinate in 3 tablespoons of white balsamic vinegar for at least 4 hours, or overnight.
Before grilling, season with 1 teaspoon sugar and a generous amount of ground black pepper (the chef uses a massive amount—a teaspoon each of ground black pepper, pink peppercorns and grains of paradise).
Grill over direct high heat for about 3 minutes on one side. The watermelon should turn bright red and become caramelized on the grilled side.
The chef serves the steak on a salad of shaved jicama, blanched asparagus tips, radishes, tarragon, chervil and olive oil, salt and pepper
Fresh figs and grapes cooked in balsamic vinegar and honey make an addictively sweet and sour sauce for pork chops in this seasonal dinner.
What's the fastest way possible to roast a turkey for Thanksgiving? Skip the whole turkey: instead, roast bone-in breasts and legs. (If you don't want to butcher a turkey yourself, you can buy them in individual pieces or have your butcher break a whole bird down for you.) Once you put the pieces in the oven, they cook in about 1 hour and 15 minutes, and are so much faster and easier to carve and serve.
If using chicken breasts, follow same instructions as pork chops in Steps 1 and 3, cooking until chicken reaches minimum internal temperature, 5-7 minutes per side.
If using sirloin steaks, follow same instructions as pork chops in Steps 1 and 3, cooking until steak reaches minimum internal temperature, 5-7 minutes per side.
If using NY strip steak, follow same instructions as pork chops in Steps 1 and 3, cooking until steak reaches a minimum internal temperature of 145 degrees, 7-10 minutes per side. Halve to serve.
Prepare the Ingredients
Stem Swiss chard. Coarsely chop leaves. Cut stems into ¼" slices. Keep leaves and stems separate. Swiss chard may be rainbow (multi-color) or entirely green. Both are delicious! Slice garlic. Pat pork chops dry, and season both sides with ¼ tsp. salt and coarse black pepper.
Roast the Butternut Squash
Place butternut squash on prepared baking sheet and toss with 2 tsp. olive oil and ¼ tsp. salt. Massage oil and seasoning into squash. Spread into a single layer and roast in hot oven until browned, 15-20 minutes. While butternut squash roasts, cook pork chops.
Cook the Pork Chops
Place a large non-stick pan over medium heat and add 2 tsp. olive oil. Place pork chops in hot pan and cook until golden brown and chops reach a minimum internal temperature of 145 degrees, 5-7 minutes per side. Remove pork chops to a plate and tent with foil. Reserve pan no need to wipe clean.
Cook the Swiss Chard
Place a medium non-stick pan over medium heat and add 2 tsp olive oil. Add Swiss chard stems to hot pan and cook until softened, 1-2 minutes. Add Swiss chard leaves, garlic, and a pinch of salt. Stir often until leaves are wilted, 2-3 minutes. Remove from burner. Transfer Swiss chard and garlic to a large mixing bowl. Add roasted butternut squash and toss or gently stir to combine.
Make Sauce and Finish Dish
Return pan used to cook pork chops to medium-high heat. Add wine and demi-glace to hot pan. Bring to a simmer. Once simmering, cook until liquid is reduced by half, 1-2 minutes. Don't be afraid of a little steam reducing requires heat! Remove from burner and swirl in butter. Plate dish as pictured on front of card, placing pork chops on sauce. Bon appétit!
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Le Bilboquet *****
[food coma (n): the feeling of listlessness, bordering on sleep, that one feels after eating a large meal, often caused by a rush of blood to the stomach and intestines during food digestion.]
Ohh Le Bilboquet…There is just so much to say about this tiny French Bistro, which is packed with a big French attitude. We all know that a certain level of animosity exists between the French and, as they would say, “Filthy Americans,” but Le Bilboquet proves that you don’t have to be in France to experience it! The wait staff (all French…of course) are a group of beautiful (and arrogant) young men, who seem inconvenienced that they even have to take your order. Essentially, you have to call them over for everything and this past time my boyfriend even caught himself saying, “Excuse me sir, can we place our order?” That’s right, the customer asking the waiter if they can be served. A little backwards, no? Of course the supermodel looking man then put down his Sunday paper and came out from behind the bar to take our order, but it just feels weird. Ohh and if you have questions about the menu, which of course is all in French, don’t expect much help from the wait staff…I asked if they had tuna tartar and he was like “of course, don’t you see it right here on the menu?!” (pointing to something in French, while making me feel uncultured at the same time).
At this point, you’re probably thinking that I messed up my star rating because all that I have done is complain…but Le Bilboquet does in fact deserve five stars because the FOOD IS INCREDIBLE! The reality is that this place would not be packed with American patrons if it did not serve delicious food. I always order the Cajun Chicken, which is actually orgasmic. It is served in a delicious peppery butter sauce and is sliced down into small pieces, making it easy to eat. Ohh and there are no bones, which is a major plus in my opinion. It is served with a small mixed green salad dressed with balsamic vinaigrette and some of the most amazing french fries I have ever tasted. The fries at the bottom of the pile soak up some of the buttery Cajun sauce and WOW, eating those is an experience! I have also had the ceasar salad, which is very delicious. However, the Cajun Chicken is a must have and even better, it is a huge portion!!
So, if you walk into this place and find yourself annoyed by the arrogant wait staff and the difficult to read menu, DON’T LEAVE!! Just order the Poulet Cajun and I promise you won’t even be able to put down your fork to complain. When the food comes at Le Bilboquet, the table (no matter what size) goes quiet until everyone has finished their plates. Then to pull yourself out of the inevitable food coma, order a cappuccino or espresso (the cappuccino is amazing!!) and resume your table talk.
The prices are high (Cajun Chicken is $27), but the food quality can demand such a price in my opinion.
I have only ever been to Le Bilboquet for lunch, and the crowd ranges from youthful to elderly. Lots of people getting dropped off in character town cars and as New York Magazine says, tons of “trust fund women with their little dogs.” However, I have heard that the dinner scene is quite different and much more youthful because the restaurant plays loud “club music,” which makes conversations difficult. I’m young and that doesn’t appeal to me, so I will probably stick to lunches there!
Steak au poivre with portabello sauce
MAYBE it’s the corks popping, or the televised countdown, or the anticipation of all those fireworks lighting up the skies as the year ends by increments all over the world. Whatever the reason, we seem to want something a little flashier than usual for New Year’s Eve. Something dramatic. Something sparkly. So when you’re planning what to serve your guests as you wait for the year to click down, consider using actual fire. A fire in a saute pan, to be exact, or the largely forgotten art of the flambe.
Flambeing food is a spectacular, showy event -- a crowd pleaser for all ages. Adults remember campfire games or an aunt’s recipe for steak Diane kids think Mom’s secretly been moonlighting with the circus.
But the fireworks aren’t just visual: Flambeing actually benefits the food, adding complexity to a dish and altering the flavor profile in wonderful ways.
So get out the party hats, pass the Mumm’s and usher everyone to the table for the final dinner of the year with some added pyrotechnics. Dim the lights, and over thinly sliced filet mignon, ignite a pan of caramelized portabello mushrooms. Pour flaming cherries over individual molten chocolate cakes. Sprinkle cinnamon over a pan of blazing apples and watch it sparkle as you ladle them over a waiting plate of crepes. Forget Times Square. You’ve just invented your own fireworks -- with flavor that sparkles as much as the light show.
The igniting of food for show can be traced to the 14th century, when it arrived in Europe courtesy of the Moors, who had -- not coincidentally -- also reintroduced the art of distillation. Of course you can probably date the original flambe a lot further back than that: 50,000 years or so, to the origins of domestic fire and cooking itself, which probably involved a convenient bolt of lightning or a handy forest fire.
More recently, people flambeed things in Parisian restaurants at the turn of the century and at Brennan’s in New Orleans in the 1950s. They still love to light food on fire in the long banquet halls of cruise ships and in glitzy Las Vegas restaurants. Historically it was done for dramatic purposes, often at tableside by Gallic waiters in immaculate dress, the dish ignited for suitably impressed diners who enjoyed the skill, the perceived danger, and most of all the showmanship of it all. The waiters retreated to their kitchens, their eyebrows intact. The guests tucked in to their cherries jubilee. Nothing burned down.
AS with most great inventions, modern flambeing was discovered by accident. In 1895, at the Cafe de Paris in Monte Carlo, a teenage waiter named Henri Carpentier was preparing crepes for the future Edward VII of England when he set fire to the pan of cordials he was heating. Worried about serving his guest promptly, he presented the sauce anyway, finding that the burning brought the flavors together in a way he hadn’t anticipated. The prince loved the dish, which was promptly named “crepes Suzette” for his dinner companion. Thus began a long tradition of formalized lighting-things-on-fire: hence bananas Foster, baked Alaska, steak Diane.
It was a terrific party trick because not only did it look fabulous, it also looked difficult. But as any magician can tell you, most of the technique is in the illusion, the smoke and mirrors -- not in the trick itself. In flambeing, all you’re doing is igniting the flammable material -- the alcohol -- in the pan with a match. It burns off in less than a minute, taking a lot of the alcohol with it. A very simple process, but one that looks spectacular, especially if you dim the lights first and do it in front of your guests. You can further heighten the effect if you serve the sauce while it’s still burning or add cinnamon, which, since it’s ground from bark, ignites just like tiny bits of firewood.
But flambeing doesn’t mean simply lighting a dish on fire. Igniting a cup of Cognac and pouring it over a dish looks very pretty, but that’s not flambeing. Add the alcohol to the sauce, however, and ignite it inside the pan, and you’re changing the chemistry of the food, not simply pouring your grandfather’s good VSOP over an already finished dish. The flavors meld, making them deeper and richer, sweeter and less harsh.
This makes sense, if you consider the properties of sugar and alcohol and heat. Alcohol boils at 175 degrees Fahrenheit, while the boiling point of water is 212. Sugar, in turn, caramelizes at 320. Igniting a pan that has all of these ingredients makes for a complex chemical reaction, one that has a number of very specific effects on what it is you are cooking, especially as the surface temperature of the burning alcohol reaches temperatures above 500 degrees. The water evaporates, the alcohol burns off, the sugar caramelizes in the intense heat, and the flavors recombine and intensify in ways that would not happen otherwise. When you add other ingredients, such as protein, even more complex reactions occur.
Because the alcohol reacts with the other ingredients, explains Harold McGee, author of of “On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen,” “it not only burns, it participates in the transformation and gives a different spectrum of products.” This alters the flavor the alcohol gives to the dish, transforming it from what he diplomatically calls “slightly medicinal” to something smoother and less bitter. In other words, you want the bourbon or Calvados or Armagnac in your caramel sauce to bring out the hint of cloves, of late fall apples, of black pepper -- not leave the whole thing smelling like a whisky bar.
JUST how much alcohol is burned off depends on the technique and the duration of the cooking. Simmering dishes for two or more hours burns off as much as 95% of the alcohol, according to McGee, while flambeing usually burns off only 25%, though this percentage also depends on how thoroughly you ignite the alcohol in the pan. The proof of the spirit used is also important. Beers and wines, which have a lower alcohol content, will not flambe (so don’t get any ideas about igniting that glass of bubbly), while spirits above 120 proof are so highly flammable that they are considered too dangerous. The best to flambe with are those that are about 80 proof. Not coincidentally, these are also the spirits and liqueurs that are often the most aromatic and distinctive, the Cointreaus and the aquavits and the Cognacs, and therefore those that elevate the flavor profile of the dish.
So, to get started, take out your saute pan and make your sauce.
Whether you’re caramelizing fruit to flambe or reducing mushrooms and demi-glace to torch, the key is to cook down the ingredients so that you don’t have too much liquid in the pan you’re going to ignite otherwise the alcohol becomes diluted and it won’t properly flambe.
WHEN the sauce is reduced and syrupy and bubbling, it’s time to set the stage. Plate your dishes, seat your guests, find your matches and dim or turn off the lights. Then take the sauce off the heat and pour in the alcohol.
Ignite the pan immediately and, as it burns, gently swirl the contents of the pan around. By swirling the pan you’re allowing all the raw alcohol to burn off -- this gives your audience a good show and allows you time to bring the pan to the plates, but it also caramelizes the entire dish and blends the flavors in the process. If you’re adding cinnamon, this is the time to do it. Sprinkle the shaker directly into the side of the flame and watch as the sparks rise up, swirling and eddying in the air currents as they burn. It’s quite a show, and you can ignite as much cinnamon as you like, but bear in mind that the amount of cinnamon you add will be the amount in your sauce.
As the flames subside, spoon the sauce onto the waiting plates. Take a bow. Oh, and now that the coast is clear, you can let the rabbit out of your hat too.