Slow-Baked Steak

Red meat is a welcomed treat here at Chez Gourmess.

We've been trying to eat less meat and more of the healthy stuff, but sometimes all I want is a glass of wine and a medium-rare steak.

Chris and I visited our local farmers market in our new neighborhood and brought home a lovely bunch of asparagus, some dandelion greens, and a 16 oz. strip steak -- all from a local farm. The steak was frozen solid, so I was a little bummed that we probably couldn't eat it for dinner without a bunch of defrosting and waiting -- until Chris reminded me that the new best way to cook a steak is by starting with a FROZEN one. We did a bit of online research, until we found this video from The New York Times, and decided to try it out. We didn't follow it exactly, but the result was a delightfully tender steak with minimal fuss. (Which means more time to drink that wine.)

Chris helped with dinner -- I was a bit nervous about splashing oil and meat juices near our lovely sparkling white marble countertops, so I wanted a partner in crime. But, I got over my fears and promised myself I would clean up the mess as soon as we were done. Which I did, and with no problems. (Gotta love 409 Natural Stone Cleaner!) I carefully seared the steak in oil --make sure it is smoking hot-- in a cast iron pan until the bottom and sides were nicely browned. Then, I flipped the steak so the browned side was facing up and turned off the heat. Once the oil had stopped sputtering and splashing, I sprinkled on a bit of salt/pepper and then Chris moved the cast iron pan into the oven which had been preheated to 200 degrees. The steak was about 1.5 inches thick and frozen solid, so we let it bake, undisturbed for about an hour, then checked the meat's temperature. When it registered 130 in the thickest part, we took it out -- the total time in the oven was about an hour and 10 minutes.

While the steak was cooking, Chris poured some wine and I wilted the dandelion greens in a pan with a wee bit of chicken broth, then tossed them in a sweet/sour/spicy dressing of apple cider vinegar, almond oil, sugar, mustard, herbs, and chili flakes. I also softened up some salted butter and mixed in some horseradish mustard until I had a lovely mustard butter -- a tasty steak and steamed asparagus topper. We didn't need a starch, but you'd have plenty of time to make more sides for your dinner while the steak cooks. Which makes me think this could be a great way to serve steak for a dinner party without having to slave over a stove or grill.

When it was done, we let the meat rest for a few minutes after we took it out of the oven, then sliced it up. It was perfectly cooked. Crispy outside but juicy and tender enough on the inside to cut with a butter knife. Yum!