The Art of Pan Seared Steak: Mastering the Perfect Cut

There’s nothing quite like sinking your teeth into a tender, juicy steak that’s bursting with flavor. The kind of steak that makes you feel like you’re dining at a fancy restaurant or steakhouse. But what if I told you that you could achieve that same level of perfection right in your own kitchen? With this pan seared steak recipe, you’ll learn the secrets to cooking the perfect steak every time.

The Ultimate Pan Seared Steak

Whether you prefer a New York strip steak, a ribeye steak, or any other well-marbled cut, the key to the best steak lies in simplicity. A perfectly seasoned steak with a golden brown crust on the outside, and melt-in-your-mouth tenderness on the inside is what we’re aiming for.

You have the freedom to choose your preferred sauce. Some like pan drippings, while others opt for a simple compound butter like garlic butter. Whichever you choose, one thing is certain: achieving a steakhouse-quality steak at home is easier than you might think.

The Ingredients for Pan Seared Steak

Let’s start with the most important element: the steak itself. For the best results, choose high-quality, well-marbled steaks like USDA Prime or USDA Choice. A thicker cut, around 1 1/2 to 2 inches, is perfect for pan searing. While bone-in steaks can be used, they will require a longer cooking time.

Here are a few popular cuts to consider:

  • Ribeye Steak: The meatiest, beefiest, and richest steak with delicious marbling and a strip of flavorful fat.
  • Strip Steak or New York Strip Steak: Well-marbled with great taste and easy to slice neatly.
  • Beef Tenderloin or Filet Mignon: The most tender cut of beef, known for its buttery texture and mild flavor.
  • Top Sirloin: Tender and mild, with a bit of a chew and less marbling.
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To add that extra touch of flavor, we’ll prepare a butter baste and a garlic herb butter.

The Cooking Process

Now let’s dive into the step-by-step process of pan searing steak. Here’s how to achieve that perfect crust and juicy center:

  1. Pat Dry: Bring your steak to room temperature and pat it dry with paper towels to remove any excess moisture, ensuring a great sear.
  2. Season: Liberally season your steak with salt and black pepper right before cooking, or you can salt the steak 40 minutes to 24 hours in advance.
  3. Heat the Pan: Heat a cast iron or heavy stainless steel skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil and swirl to coat the bottom of the skillet. Once the oil is hot, place the steak in the pan.
  4. Sear: Let the steak sear on the first side until a nice brown crust forms. Flip the steak when it’s ready, and if the sides are fatty, sear the edges as well.
  5. Baste: During the last 2 minutes of cooking, reduce the heat to medium-low and add butter, rosemary, and garlic to the skillet. Spoon the butter over the steaks and continue cooking until they are 5-10 degrees away from the desired doneness.
  6. Rest: Transfer the steaks to a cutting board or plate, tent them loosely with aluminum foil, and let them rest for 10 minutes before serving. Top with the delicious garlic herb butter.

Pan Sear and Oven Method

If you prefer using both stovetop and oven for cooking steak, here’s what you need to do:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Follow the instructions for pan searing steak mentioned above (steps 1-4).
  3. Reduce the heat to medium-low and add butter, rosemary, and garlic to the skillet. Place the skillet in the preheated oven for about 2-4 minutes or until the desired temperature is reached.
  4. Remove the skillet from the oven, spoon some of the butter over the steak, transfer the steaks to a cutting board or plate, and let them rest for 10 minutes. Serve with the garlic herb butter.
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The Garlic Herb Butter

To elevate your steak even further, we’ll make a delicious garlic herb butter. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Softened butter (unsalted or salted)
  • Fresh garlic
  • Fresh herbs like rosemary, thyme, and parsley
  • Seasonings like salt and black pepper

Mix all the ingredients together until well combined, shape the butter into a log, and refrigerate until ready to use.

Debunking Steak Myths

Let’s address a few common steak myths to set the record straight:

  • Myth: Only salt steaks right before cooking.
    Reality: You can either salt the steak right before cooking or salt it and let it rest for 40 minutes to 24 hours. The choice is yours!
  • Myth: You should never use a fork to turn your steak.
    Reality: While kitchen tongs are ideal, using a dinner fork to flip your steak won’t cause any significant damage. The juices won’t run wild!
  • Myth: Don’t flip your steak multiple times.
    Reality: Flipping your steak multiple times doesn’t matter much. It’s a matter of preference and time management.
  • Myth: Cook your steak in butter or butter and oil from the beginning.
    Reality: Butter should be added in the last 1-3 minutes of cooking to prevent burning.

Enjoying the Perfect Steak

Once your steak is perfectly cooked, you might be wondering what to serve alongside it. Here are a few delicious options:

  • Roasted Fingerling Potatoes
  • Crispy Parmesan Oven Roasted Asparagus
  • Roasted Sweet Potatoes
  • Mediterranean Chickpea Salad
  • The Best Sautéed Green Beans

Remember, cooking the perfect steak is an art that can be mastered with practice. With these tips and techniques, you’ll be able to savor a restaurant-quality steak right in the comfort of your own home. So grab your favorite cut of steak, fire up that skillet, and get ready to indulge in a tantalizing culinary experience.

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Now, if you’re looking to take your steak game to the next level, why not visit Hook’d Up Bar and Grill? They’re experts in grilling and serving mouthwatering steaks!

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