Ribeye Steak with Pomme Puree & Herbed Carrots

Categories: Main Course, Recipes, West
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Published on: December 13, 2011
 

I love cooking a good steak.  It’s quick and easy but so many seem to get it wrong?  Even restaurants sometimes struggle to get the right level of “done-ness” but I think there are a few key things people miss out when cooking a steak.

First of all, you need some good quality meat – it’s a steak, don’t go buying the supermarket value meat that needs to be beaten to death (a second time) with a meat tenderiser before it is going to be even remotely edible.  Splash the cash, the steak is the main part of any meal so make it a good one.  That said, you don’t have to get Fillet steak (tenderloin), I actually find it’s not as tasty as a Sirloin or Ribeye.

What steak should you buy? 

Pick one that has a good marbling of fat though it, that will melt as you cook it and give the meat more flavour, the reason Fillet steak can be a little bland is because it has so little fat.  Ribeye is ideal because it has a good chunk of fat right in the middle of it!  Sirloin usually has most fat on the edges.  T-Bone is the best of both worlds and Rump is tasty but usually has a fairly large amount of waste and can be a little tough.  Next buy a steak that has been well hung for at least 21 days.  It should have a deep purple colour to it.  Lastly you want a steak that has an even thickness to it, about an inch thick is ideal.  If the steak is thin on one bit and thick on the other it won’t cook evenly and you’ll be forced to choose between underdone and overdone. Which brings me nicely on the next point:

How do you tell when it’s done?

It’s down to personal taste how well done you like your steak.  Personally I think welldone is overdone and basically ruins the steak.  If it’s grey and cooked through it’s overdone because you’ve taken out all the juices and flavour, you could do that with a cheaper bit of meat.  The easiest way to tell how done your steak is, is by pressing on the steak.  If it is soft and fleshy it’s rare, if it’s soft but gives a little resistance it’s medium and if it is firm to touch it is well done.  That’s a good general rule and if you are really good you can tell how done it is just by looking at it and by the smell of it.  There are other ways to do it of course, and if you have a good way to judge it, use it.  I like to time it, a steak that is about an inch thick, cooked for 2 mins each side on a high heat in a grill pan is rare, 3mins is usually medium rare, 4mins medium and anything over 5mins is well done.  Remember you can’t just cut into your steak to see how done it is, you have to let it rest for 5-10mins.  It can go from rare to medium in that time!

How best to cook it?

Barbecue.  That’s the best way, high heat, flame grilled, bit of smoke – it keeps all the juices in and gives it additional flavour.  Failing that I like to use a grill pan.  That’s about as close to an indoor barbecue you can get.  It will give you the grill lines, it will keep the juices in and it can be cooked with high, direct heat.  Pan frying would be my next choice and lastly grilling as that lets all the juices drip away and I find you end up with a fairly dry steak.  Anyone who suggests sticking the steak in an oven should have their head bashed in with a frying pan.  You don’t do a traditional steak in the oven, that’s beef wellington or rib roast.

 

With all that out-of-the-way, we can get on with the recipe!  Firstly I have to warn you, the pomme puree won’t win you any dieting competitions.  It might win you a coronary heart bypass – but who wants to live forever?

Ingredients (Serves 2):

2x Ribeye Steaks (about 250g each)

500g Potatoes (Maris Piper or other good mashing potatoes)

125g Butter

150ml Whole Milk

2 tbsp Light Soy Sauce

2 tsp Olive Oil

3 Carrots

1 tbsp Honey

Handful of fresh, chopped Basil, Thyme and Tarragon

Sea Salt Flakes

 

Method:

1.  30mins before cooking, remove the steaks from the fridge and let them come to room temp.  In the meantime, prepare the marinade by mixing the olive oil and soy sauce.

2.  About 15mins prior to cooking, brush the steaks with the marinade.

3.  Set the grillpan to a very high heat (max setting on your cooker).

4.  Just before you put the steak on to the grillpan, rub the sea salt into the fatty parts of the steak.

5.  If your grillpan is big enough you can put both steaks on, otherwise cook them one at a time.  Don’t crowd your pan, you want them to fry not steam.

6.  Turn the steak once it is half-cooked, if you have a sirloin steak then you can use some tongs to help cook the fat by holding the steak on its side for a minute before turning.

7.  Let the other side of the steak cook, then allow it to rest for 10mins.

 

For the Veg:

1.  Place all the potatoes in a pan of cold water and bring to the boil (unpeeled).

2.  While the potatoes are being boiled peel and slice the carrots.

3.  The potatoes are cooked when you can stick a fork into the middle of them without any effort – it can take a while, depending on the size of your potatoes.

4.  Drain the potatoes and peel them immediately, don’t worry the skin will almost fall off.

5.  While you are burning your fingers trying to peel the potatoes, you can also cook the carrots in a saute pan.  Add a good 2-3 tbsp of Olive oil to the pan, and bring to a medium heat.

6.  Add in the carrots with some salt and the honey and fry.  Once the carrots start to soften add in your chopped herbs and then cover the pan and allow it all to steam until completely soft.

7.  Bring the milk to a boil and keep it hot.  Mash the potatoes in their pan and return to a medium heat, stirring to make sure it doesn’t burn.  Stop when most of the steam has gone.

8.  Cube up your half block of butter and add to the mashed potatoes while stirring vigorously.

9.  Add the hot milk, again while stirring the mash.  Add some salt to taste.

10.  Now if you want a really smooth and proper pomme puree, pass it all through a sieve (if you can) and serve immediately with the carrots and steak.

Tips:

My wife likes her steak medium-done and I like mine rare so I have to cook her’s first, let it rest and then cook mine.  Always do the most-done first as they take longer and your rarer steak will have gone stone cold in that time.

Warm plates will keep the steaks from going cold but don’t let the steaks rest on them, otherwise they will continue to cook.

Don’t salt the steaks too early, it will draw out the moisture in the meat.

Don’t move the steak once it is on the grillpan, that will give you the nice charred “lines” through the meat.

It helps to buy potatoes of roughly the same size as you will boil them whole, buying small ones and big ones in a bag will result in uneven cooking and you need them to be completely soft.



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