Cast-Iron Seared New York Strip Steak

“This dish embodies the meat and potatoes prerequisite for American cooking,” says Jonathan Adams, chef of The Diving Horse in Avalon. “But it has a decidedly ‘restaurant edge’ to it. It remains one of my favorite meals, and is worth all the effort that goes into it.”

Cast-iron seared New York strip steak.
Photo by Jason Varney.

“We use Creekstone Farms Certified Black Angus beef from Pat LaFrieda Meats in New Jersey. Pat cuts the steak at 14 ounces for us with most of the extra gristle and fat removed. You can ask your butcher to “denude” it for you, or you can get the steaks cut a little larger and trim off any fat you don’t want.  On the other end of the spectrum (and my preference), substitute a well-marbled bone-in ribeye. Just make sure it’s big.

“Timing is essential for this recipe. Sear and baste the meat, then allow 45 minutes for the sauce. Finishing the steak in the oven will get the meat hot again. The long rest time is good for the meat. However, since summer is upon us, I couldn’t help but recommend grilling these steaks. Using some hardwood like white birch or cedar on top of the coals will lend an unforgettable flavor.”

Cast-Iron Seared New York Strip Steak with Confit Potatoes, Asparagus, Glazed Shallots, Red Wine Jus

Serves: 4

Glazed Shallots

12              whole peeled shallots
4 oz         soy sauce
4 oz        Worcestershire sauce
4 oz        beef broth
2 oz         unsalted butter
2 sprigs    fresh thyme

1.    Melt the butter in a heavy pan and add the shallots. Roast them over low heat until they start to lightly brown.
2.    Increase the heat to high, add the thyme and deglaze with the soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce and beef broth.
3.    Cook uncovered until the shallots are soft and yielding to the touch and the liquid is thick and syrupy.
4.    Set aside. This can be done up to two days in advance, which actually allows the shallots to develop a deeper flavor.

Fingerling Potato Confit

3 lbs         scrubbed fingerling potatoes
5 lbs        rendered duck fat*

1.    In a deep casserole dish, place the potatoes covered with the duck fat.
2.    Cover with foil and place in a 325 F degree oven for 1 and a half hours.
3.    The fat should never boil and the potatoes are done when a skewer inserted comes out clean, with no resistance.
4.    Let the potatoes and fat cool to room temp, then strain the fat through a pasta colander. Cut the potatoes lengthwise and set aside.
5.    Reserve the fat for future use. It will last a month in the fridge, several months in the freezer.


2 lbs         standard green asparagus, washed

1.    On a bias, slice the first 2-inch tip of the asparagus.
2.    Continue cutting the rest of the stalk at half-inch intervals, making sure to stop when the stem gets tough and woody.
3.    If you are using very fresh asparagus, it does not need to be peeled. The vegetable will be ripe and tender, and the skin will not be tough.

New York Strip Steaks

4        12 oz New York Strip steaks, denuded
to taste    kosher salt and coarsely ground black pepper
2 oz        grapeseed oil
4 oz        unsalted butter
2         crushed garlic cloves
2          fresh thyme sprigs

1.    Let the steaks come to room temperature and season with salt and pepper. THIS STEP IS VERY IMPORTANT AS IT ALLOWS FOR A PROPERLY COOKED PIECE OF BEEF.
2.    Preheat a heavy cast iron fry pan over medium flame. Add the oil and let warm. Grapeseed oil has a neutral flavor and high smoke point, which makes it perfect for high temperature cooking.
3.    When the oil begins to shimmer and moves about fluidly in the pan, add the steaks and cook 4 minutes on one side.
4.    Flip the steaks and cook 2 more minutes.
5.    Add the butter, garlic and thyme. As the butter melts and starts to brown, spoon it over the steak repeatedly for 2-3 minutes. Turn the heat down to low. This is called basting.
6.    Remove the steaks and let rest on a wire rack. Cover the meat with foil. THIS STEP IS CALLED “RESTING” AND ALLOWS THE MEAT TO RELAX WITHOUT BLEEDING OUT ALL ITS JUICES.
7.    Do not wash or wipe out the pan. You will need it for the sauce.

Red Wine Jus

1 bottle (750ml) dry red wine
12 oz         low sodium beef broth
8 oz        prepared veal demiglace *
1         whole carrot, peeled, large dice
2 ribs        celery, large dice
1         medium onion, large dice
2         crushed garlic cloves
1          fresh bay leaf
4         fresh thyme sprigs

1.    Pour off the excess oil and butter from the cast-iron pan used to sear the beef. Reheat the pan on medium high.
2.    Add the celery, carrots, onions and garlic and sauté until they just start to caramelize.
3.    Add the red wine and reduce rapidly over high heat until ¾ of the wine has evaporated.
4.    Add the beef stock, demi-glace and herbs. Bring to a boil and transfer to a wide sauce pot.
5.    Simmer the sauce, uncovered for 30-40 minutes. Skim off any fat or foam that gathers on the surface. Let it reduce.
6.    When the sauce has developed good viscosity or “body,” pour it off through a fine mesh kitchen strainer.
7.    Discard the remnants.

To Assemble:

Sauté the potatoes and asparagus together and add the shallots. Arrange them on a plate.

Re-warm the steaks in the oven, slice and place next to the vegetables. Spoon the sauce over the top. Garnish with flaky sea salt such as Maldon*.

*rendered duck fat, veal demi glace and Maldon sea salt are all available at Di Bruno Brothers or any high quality, gourmet food service website.

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