The Perfect Steak

I stringently restrict red meat consumption in my household to no more than once every two weeks. Caleb and I both have family histories of heart disease; in my case, two grandparents dead by age 40 of sudden massive heart attacks. However, this does not mean I don’t enjoy red meat. There aren’t many things in life as sumptuous as a ribeye cooked to perfection or a melt-in-your-mouth medium-rare prime rib with all the juices surrounding it. 

As you may know, I do most of my produce shopping at the local farmers market. I also happen to buy meat there when available. Wishbone Heritage Farms of Ridgeville, SC is a favorite of mine; they grow and sell herbs, produce, duck eggs, quail eggs, duck, goose, pork, beef, whatever they have. I  recently picked up two huge and ever-so-lovely ribeyes from them as a treat for Caleb. I originally planned to save them for a special occasion, like his birthday or our upcoming anniversary but they were just asking to be eaten last night. Happy Monday steak night? – yes! 

I had just one small issue – no grill. How is this possible you ask? As recent college grads, a nice little grill just hasn’t happened yet. It’s such a shame during a beautiful South Carolina summer but we do alright without one. So what do you do when you have beautifully marbled, 1 1/2″ ribeyes and no grill? Well, you can just cook them stove-top or you can bake them. OR you can do a little of both. 

Basically all you have to do is coat the room temperature steak in olive oil, generously salt and pepper them, sear for 30 seconds on each side, then put under the broiler for two-three minutes on each side in a cast iron skillet. Click here for detailed instruction. 

These steaks were cooked to a perfect medium-rare and had a wonderful crust. I served with fennel-garlic mashed potatoes and brussels sprouts for a man-approved meal. Alas, I failed to take pictures. I’ll leave the details to your imagination. 

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Tuna Tacos – Fourth of July Weekend Part I

For a person who likes to spend hours in the kitchen making dinner, quick on the go meals can be challenging. This three day weekend has been full of friends, errands, vet visits and fireworks, leaving little time for cooking. With that said, I wasn’t unsatisfied with what I threw together.

Between running errands on Saturday, I fixed up tuna tacos. I simply seared a couple tuna steaks, pulled apart the cooked tuna and served atop kale, cucumber and sliced avocado, then topped with plain yogurt (I prefer Fage), diced yellow tomatoes, shredded Mexican cheese and salsa. As with anything you eat, the fresher the better; I wouldn’t touch this if it was made with canned tuna.

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Meal Inspo

 

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If you can’t tell, I adore peaches. Peaches encompass all the goodness and sweetness I associate with summertime. I’ll bet you didn’t know that South Carolina is the #1 peach producing state in the country. (If you’re including commercially grown peaches, California tops the list.) Historically, I am not a fan of canned goods of any sort, preserves/jams/jellies included. However I’ve recently had a change of heart and have developed a great appreciation for homemade preserves and I couldn’t resist snatching up these spicy peach preserves from the Waxhaw farmers market. This jar of tantalizing goodness inspired last night’s supper. I cook our supper every night (at least on weekdays, weekends we scrounge or eat out) and I’m not one of those foodies who puts a gourmet meal on the table every night. But what I fix is always well thought out and pretty darn delicious. Last night was one of those unspectacular evenings. I seared and sautéed a few thick, lean pork chops (seasoned with herbes de provençe and salt) in olive oil, roasted carrots and turnips with orange peel and fresh oregano and served up leftover Brussels sprouts and brown rice (garlic and chile powder) on the side. And to top it off, I added the spicy peach preserves to the pork while it rested in a covered pan. Let me tell you, the peach preserves and the pork chops? SO GOOD. The spice in the preserves was perfect with the chile powder and garlic in the rice and the bitterness of the Brussels sprouts balanced it all out so nicely. The carrots were key because pork and root vegetables are classic.

Although it wasn’t an exciting meal full of brilliant culinary innovations, it was balanced and satisfying and isn’t that the goal for every home cooked meal? I’d say it is.