From easy sandwiches to bistro-quality entrees, there is bound to be a way for steak to show up on your dinner table in a manner that suits your tastes. When buying steak, The Reluctant Gourmet recommends that you learn which cuts will get you the most bang for your buck, to buy the best you can afford, and to learn the signs of quality — like marbling, or other signs to show the beef is good — no matter what the cut. Getting to know your local butcher can also help you pick out the best steaks or find deals. Above all else, though, you need to know what you are looking for before you shop, which is how our eight recipes will help you plan your steak dinner.
1. Seared Steak with Caramelized Onion and Blue Cheese Sauce
Caramelized onions with a blue cheese sauce adds a restaurant quality to this steak dinner from Eating Well. Follow the recipe to a T and your steak and onions will only dirty one pan in the process of preparation; the dish will be ready in about half an hour.
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt, divided
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 1-1¼ pounds boneless strip steak (about 1 inch thick), trimmed
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 2 cups thinly sliced onion
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar
- ¼ cup crumbled blue cheese
Directions: Pat steaks dry and cut into 4 equal portions. Sprinkle with ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until very hot but not smoking. Add the steaks and cook until browned on the bottom, 2-4 minutes. Turn over, reduce heat to medium-low and cook to desired doneness, 3 to 5 minutes for medium-rare. Remove the steaks from the pan and set aside, covered with foil.
Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil to the pan and increase the heat to medium. Stir in onion, water, and brown sugar, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is golden brown and the liquid has evaporated, 8-10 minutes. If your onions appear to be browning too quickly, add more water, 1 tablespoon at a time. Remove from heat. Stir in blue cheese and the remaining ¼ teaspoon salt. Serve the steaks with about 2 tablespoons sauce each.
2. Flank Steak with Red Wine and Oven Fries
For a second restaurant-worthy meal, turn to Good Housekeeping‘s version of steak frites. Fries and steak has long been a popular meal in France and America, and it is easy to make at home by roasting potato wedges and quickly cooking the steak on the stove-top. This recipe will serve four.
- 3 medium (8 ounces each) russet (baking) potatoes
- 3 teaspoons olive oil
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
- 1¼ pounds beef flank steak, trimmed of fat
- ½ teaspoon dried tarragon
- 1 medium shallot, minced
- ¾ cup dry red wine
Directions: Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Cut each unpeeled potato crosswise in half, then cut each half lengthwise into 8 wedges. Spray a 15.5-by-10.5-inch jelly-roll pan with nonstick cooking spray. Place potatoes in pan and toss with 2 teaspoons oil, ¼ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper. Roast potatoes in oven for 25 minutes or until fork-tender and beginning to brown, stirring once halfway through roasting.
Meanwhile, rub steak with tarragon and remaining ¼ teaspoon salt to season both sides. Heat 12-inch cast-iron or other heavy skillet on medium-high. Add 1 teaspoon oil and steak; cook 12 minutes for medium, or until desired doneness, turning over once. Transfer steak to cutting board. To same skillet, add shallot and cook 1 minute, stirring. Add wine and heat to boiling; boil 2 minutes or until reduced to ⅓ cup. Thinly slice steak and serve with wine sauce, and potato wedges.
3. Garlic Bread Steak Sandwich
You’ll have a quick and easy sandwich on your hands when you use Kraft’s recipe, along with your new favorite way of flavoring bread. If you cannot find bolillos — traditional Mexican bread rolls — substitute another crusty bread for the sandwiches, like French baguettes.
- 2 onions, sliced
- 1½ pound beef sirloin steak, thinly sliced
- 2 serrano chiles, stemmed and sliced
- ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
- ⅓ cup mayonnaise
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 6 bolillos, split
- 6 slices cheese
Directions: Cook onions in large nonstick skillet on medium heat for 10 minutes or until caramelized. Remove from skillet; cover to keep warm. Add meat to skillet in batches; cook 2-3 minutes or until done, turning occasionally and adding chiles to skillet with the last batch of meat. Combine all meat, onions, and cilantro in bowl; cover to keep warm.
Mix mayonnaise and garlic powder; spread onto cut sides of bolillos. Cook in skillet 2 minutes on each side or until golden brown on both sides. Fill with meat mixture and cheese.
4. Sicilian Steak
With French-inspired cuisine behind us, we’ve got Italy on the horizon — specifically, Sicily. The Williams-Sonoma Kitchen has created an herb paste that will make this dinner for four sensational.
- 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
- 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh thyme
- 1½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ⅛ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1½ teaspoons minced garlic
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 boneless rib-eye steaks, each about 12 ounces
Directions: In a small bowl, stir together the rosemary, thyme, salt, black pepper, red pepper flakes, garlic, and olive oil. Reserve 2 teaspoons of the herb paste. Rub the remaining herb paste onto both sides of the steaks. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.
Preheat a cast-iron fry pan over medium-high heat for 5 minutes. Place the steaks in the hot pan and cook, turning once, for 2-3 minutes per side for medium-rare. Transfer to a cutting board and brush the tops of the steaks with the reserved herb paste. Cover loosely with aluminum foil and let rest for 5 minutes. Slice the steaks thinly across the grain and serve immediately.
5. Sesame-Ginger Beef and Asparagus Stir-Fry
Another one-pan recipe comes from Bon Appétit. Your dinner for four can be rounded out with rice or by adding more fresh vegetables to the dish. You should be able to find fish sauce in the Asian or international aisle of your grocery store.
- 1 pound lean top sirloin, sliced into thin strips
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 4 tablespoons peanut oil or vegetable oil, divided
- 1 teaspoon oriental sesame oil
- 1 pound thin asparagus, trimmed, cut on diagonal into 1½-inch pieces
- 1 small bunch green onions, cut on diagonal into 1½-inch pieces
- 1½ tablespoons minced peeled fresh ginger
- ⅔ cup beef broth
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce (nam pla)
- 1 teaspoon sugar
Directions: Combine beef and cornstarch in large bowl. Using hands, rub to coat well. Heat 2 tablespoons peanut oil in large skillet over high heat. Working in batches, add beef in single layer and cook, undisturbed, until meat begins to blacken on bottom, about 1½ minutes. Turn over and cook until second side browns, about 1 minute. Transfer beef to large plate.
Heat remaining 2 tablespoons peanut oil and 1 teaspoon sesame oil in same skillet over medium-high heat. Add asparagus, green onions, and ginger; sauté until vegetables are tinged brown and crisp-tender, about 2 minutes. Add broth, fish sauce, and sugar; bring to boil. Return beef to skillet and cook until sauce is slightly thickened, about 1 minute. Transfer to platter and serve.
6. Marinated Grilled Hanger Steak
For a grilled steak that you can eat as is, toss in a salad, or throw on some sandwiches, try Anne Burrell’s marinated hanger steak from the Food Network. Depending on what your final dish with the steak involves, it will serve anywhere from four to six people.
- 4 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 3 cloves garlic, smashed and finely chopped
- pinch crushed red pepper
- 2 sprigs rosemary, picked and finely chopped
- juice and zest of 1 lemon
- 2 (1½ pounds each) hanger steaks, trimmed, membrane removed and cut in half lengthwise
- kosher salt
- extra-virgin olive oil
Directions: In a small bowl, combine the Dijon, garlic, rosemary, lemon juice and zest, and crushed red pepper. Spread the marinade on the steaks and let them sit out in the fridge anywhere from 2 hours to overnight. Preheat the grill. Season the steaks with salt.
When the grill is hot, brush and oil the grill. When the flames have dissipated, place the steaks on a hot spot on the grill. Brush with the excess marinade and move the steaks out of the flame if there is a flare-up. Grill the steak for 4-5 minutes on each side for medium rare. Remove the steaks from the grill and let them rest for 5-10 minutes before slicing. Serve immediately after slicing.
Braciole looks difficult to make, but Giada de Laurentiis’ recipe from the Cooking Channel couldn’t be easier to follow. You can make a homemade tomato sauce to serve with the rolled-up steaks or use your favorite ready-made brand.
- ½ cup dried Italian-style bread crumbs
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- ⅔ cup grated Pecorino Romano
- ⅓ cup grated provolone
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 (1½-pound) flank steak
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 3¼ cups marinara sauce
Directions: Stir the first five ingredients in a medium bowl to blend. Stir in 2 tablespoons of the oil. Season mixture with salt and pepper and set aside. Lay the flank steak flat on the work surface. Sprinkle the bread crumb mixture evenly over the steak to cover the top evenly. Starting at one short end, roll up the steak as for a jelly roll to enclose the filling completely. Using butcher’s twine, tie the steak roll to secure. Sprinkle the braciole with salt and pepper.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil in a heavy large ovenproof skillet over medium heat. Add the braciole and cook until browned on all sides, about 8 minutes. Add the wine to the pan and bring to a boil. Stir in the marinara sauce. Cover partially with foil and bake until the meat is almost tender, turning the braciole and basting with the sauce every 30 minutes. After 1 hour, uncover and continue baking until the meat is tender, about 30 minutes longer. The total cooking time should be about 1½ hours.
Remove the braciole from the sauce. Using a large sharp knife, cut the braciole crosswise and diagonally into ½-inch-thick slices. Transfer the slices to plates. Spoon the sauce over and serve.
8. Steak and Eggs Hash
Make this Chow recipe whenever the craving hits you for a sizzling steak served with simply prepared, rich eggs and potatoes. With plenty of protein and some vegetables tossed in, you won’t be hungry when you eat this breakfast for dinner.
- 2 tablespoons vegetable or olive oil
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter (¼ stick)
- 2 (10-ounce, ¾-inch-thick) boneless New York steaks, trimmed of fat and cut into medium dice
- 1 pound medium russet potatoes, peeled and cut into medium dice
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
- ½ medium yellow onion, medium dice
- 4 large eggs
Directions: Heat oil and butter in a large nonstick frying pan with a secure lid over medium-high heat until oil is shimmering and butter is melted. Add half of the steak, season generously with salt and freshly ground black pepper, and cook, stirring rarely, until steak is browned and crusty, about 3 minutes. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon and set aside. Repeat with remaining steak. Add potatoes and 1 teaspoon kosher salt to the pan, season with freshly ground black pepper, and stir to coat. Pat potatoes down into a single layer with a spatula, reduce the heat to medium, and cook, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are golden brown on the bottom, about 4 to 5 minutes.
Add onion and stir to combine. Cook, stirring rarely, until potatoes are golden brown all over and just give way when pierced with a knife and onion is just softened, about 5 minutes. Add reserved steak and any accumulated juices to potato-onion mixture and stir to combine. Create four indentations, crack 1 egg into each indentation, and season eggs with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Cover the pan and cook until egg whites are set and yolks have reached desired doneness.