I grew up an insanely picky eater. Much to my parents’ dismay, I attempted to limit my meals to cheesy pasta, mac and cheese, and the occasional chicken nugget. Since then I have widely expanded my taste buds. I would happily indulge in oysters, escargot, and even tripe sandwiches.

Given this varied range, my all time favorite meal is a simple steak dinner. I’m not sure how vegans do it, but I could never even imagine giving up meat let alone a medium-rare filet.       

So I sat down with my all time favorite chef, my dad, and asked him all the secrets to an amazing home cooked steak. And this was his response:

Go to a reputable butcher, which can be found at most local owned markets,and buy the highest quality of meat. Depending on the number of people you are hosting, my dad suggests a top sirloin, ribeye, or filet as the preferred cut. When you get home, salt the meat as a dry brine and leave uncovered in the fridge.  

After 24 hours, remove the steak from the refrigerator at least one hour before cooking. Grill the meat to the preferred amount while maintaining as much color as possible. The rule of thumb of a well tasting steak is that color equals flavor while grill marks limit that flavor to a certain bite or two. 

As you pull the meat off the grill, let the steak rest 10 minutes before cutting to allow the juices to absorb back into the meat. To finish your meal top with a generous amount of good olive oil and maldon salt. 

While the steak itself should stand alone and be the star, you are free to add on some sides. My dad always incorporates a starch which is usually potatoes and usually fried, along with a healthy pinch of high-quality salt. To finish the meal, serving a salad with a high acidic dressing to balance the fatty meat is a perfect finale. You are welcome to include any form of additional vegetables to make you feel less guilty about the potatoes, be my guest but my family usually opts out on that.        

Plate strategically, as eyes (or phone) always eat first, and enjoy.

Photo Credit: Avery Krusiewicz