26 School House

Here are some great recipes that utilize ingredients available around Mystic, CT. We have designed these recipes so that they are interesting, easy to replicate, and generate a minimal amount of mess.

Cooking in Reverse - the Guide to perfect Steaks

This time it is Strip steaks. It is best to get them on the thick side, although good results can be achieved with thinner offerings. We have digital thermometers with a cable in the drawer opposite to the range.

1. Start off with a generous amount of salt and pepper on both sides. I avoid rubs with paprika, onion and garlic because these will burn and taste bitter when you sear the steaks. Rest them on aluminum foil twisted into a snake. This keeps them from touching metal and overcooking at the point of contact. Air can also circulate in order to heat evenly and to dry the surface.

strip steaks salted

2. Put them in the oven set to 200-225F, with a temp probe inserted horizontally as close as possible to the center of the meat. Convection oven mode works best because it heats more evenly. By using a temp probe with a wire, you don't have to keep opening the oven door to check temps. There are many offered on Amazon. Thermpro seems to be pretty good. One model has a separate alarm unit that is wireless so you can keep near your if you walk away from the oven; There is nothing worse than getting distracted and then coming back into the kitchen only to realize the temp alarm has been going off for quite awhile

steaks on foil

Cook until the temp is 130F for med rare; This will take about an hour maybe more depending on the starting temp and the thickness. Thinner steaks should be cooked a little less.

3. When steaks are up to temp, take them out and cover them. They can sit at room temp for an hour or more without any problem. This can be done well before guests arrive.

cooked steaks

4. Finish the steaks when you are ready to serve them. Use either a skillet or on a hot grill. Natural lump charcoal is the best since it add flavor and gets really hot. If using a skillet, cast iron works very well because it heats evenly and is not damaged by heat. I use Ghee(clarified butter) because it has good flavor and a very high smoke point. Heat it up to about 425F and put the steaks in. It is easy to check pan temperature using an infrared thermometer; I use one all the time.

Since the steak surface has been dried by the oven, the browning reaction will occur very quickly. A minute on each side, maybe a little less for thin steaks, will give a gorgeous brown crust

searing steaks

finished steak