Tag Archives: cast iron

Steak Done Just Right #TuesdayTip

We love steak, but since we can’t have a gas/charcoal BBQ anymore, we’ve had to experiment with how to grill steak just right and have finally found the way!

For starters, you’ll need a nice thick cut of beef – about an inch thick. Whether it’s London Broil or a more expensive cut of meat, this will work for you. When I do London Broil, I generally marinate it, but that’s not a necessary part of this recipe.

What you will need is a pan that you can get really hot. I recommend something like the Lodge Cast Iron Square Grill. This Lodge grill is pre-seasoned which is great although it’s not that tough to season cast iron. Just clean it when you buy, oil it up and let it sit in a low temp oven. Once you’ve got that first coat, be sure not to scrub too hard when washing. Just a little soap and water. Nothing beats cast iron for cooking.

Except maybe black steel or carbon steel. These pans are lighter, but can deal with high heat situations. They need seasoning as well, so a pre-seasoned one is your best bet.

Back to the steak. Preheat your oven to 250 degrees. Once it’s heated, place the steak on an oiled pan and cook for about 30 minutes or until the internal temp is 125 degrees.

Then, remove from the heat and get the cast iron/black steel pan heating. Give it a little spray of cooking oil and once it’s hot enough to be smoking, add the steak. Sear each side for one minute or until the internal temp is about 140 for medium rare or 155 for medium.

How can you tell the temperature? I highly recommend one of the instant read thermometers. They can be pricey, like the Thermoworks, but it is worth it.

Once you’ve seared the steak, set it aside off the heat for 10 to 15 minutes. Why should you let it rest? Heat forces the juices toward the center of the steak and if you cut it immediately, those juices will run out of the center. Letting the meat rest will allow the juices to flow back through all the parts of the steak. For a more scientific explanation about the benefits of resting meat, you can visit the Food Lab!

Use this process for any other meats you might want to grill, like lamb or pork chops!
steak

Kabobs the easy way!

I love the taste of kabobs whether they have lamb, beef, chicken or shellfish. But the last thing I want to do at night after a long day at work is to come home and have to worry about skewering everything. Of course, I could do it the night before, but again, it’s too much effort on a weeknight.

So what can you do if you love that melding of veggies, but don’t want all the work of kabobbing them?

You can make your kabobs in the skillet sans skewering!

Ingredients

  • Protein of your choice (or no protein for that matter)
  • One Red Pepper
  • One Onion
  • One small zucchini aka green squash
  • One small yellow squash
  • 8 or so small to medium mushrooms
  • One large tomato
  • 1/8 cup sherry/balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup tomato sauce/juice/ketchup

Directions

Place a little olive oil in your skillet, preferably a large cast iron one. It’ll hold the heat better and will also give you some dietary iron for your system.

Put the skillet on high heat and get it nice and warm. While you are doing that, wash and slice the mushrooms. Place them in the skillet to cook first on high heat. Mushrooms have a lot of water and you want to evaporate all that water and get the mushrooms starting to brown before you add any other veggies, otherwise you will just be steaming them and not pan broiling them.

Next, cut the red pepper into inch cubes. Add to mushrooms once all the water is gone. Set the heat to medium-high.

Cut the onions into one inch cubes. Once the red peppers are starting to sweat a little, add the onions. Give everything a good stir every now and then.

Prep a second pan with a little oil for your protein or if you have a grill handy, get that warming up.

On a different cutting board, slice your beef/lamb/pork/chicken into thin slices for faster cooking. If you’re using shrimp or scallops there is no need to do anything with them other than cook them.

Chop the yellow and green squash in half and then slice into uniform slices. About 1/4 inch thick since we want it to cook fairly fast. Once the onions are starting to look translucent, toss in the squash.

In the second pan, place your slices of meat or shellfish. Leave them on one side until they are starting to brown and then turn. Keep an eye on the veggies and give them a stir or two.

While the meat/fish is cooking, slice the tomato into eighths and then cut those eighths in half. You want to toss the tomato in at that very last minute. You can also substitute grape or cherry tomatoes, but not very big ones.

Once all the meat is cooked, place it on a plate and let it rest for a second. You are going to slice it into strips and then mix it in with the veggies. Once it is all mixed, add the sherry/balsamic vinegar (not apple vinegar as it is too strong) to the veggie/meat mix and stir. Then add the tomato sauce/juice/ketchup. Not too much. Give it a stir and cook for just a few minutes.

That’s it. Skillet kabobs! Serve them over rice, couscous or rice pilaf.

Hope you enjoyed this Tuesday’s Tip!