Thanksgiving planning is in full swing, and if you are anything like me, a lot of your cooking time between now and next Thursday is dedicated to Thanksgiving prep; however, a girl’s gotta eat well to fuel all that chopping, baking, pureeing, and dish scrubbing. Enter the pan-seared, peppercorn crusted steak, a dish that is at once easy, quick, and luxurious. It is equally welcome as a weeknight meal for one and something to serve company.
Peppercorn Crusted New York Strip Steak
(2) 3/4 to 1 lb New York strip steaks, cut in half
Kosher salt, to taste
1/4 cup assorted peppercorns, crushed with a heavy skillet, or coarsely ground in a spice mill or coffee grinder (I use a mix of tellicherry black, pink, and sichuan peppercorns, but use what you like)
2 Tablespoons of butter
1. Place the steaks on a plate and season generously on both sides with salt. Liberally sprinkle the peppercorns onto both sides of the steaks and press them into the meat to help them stick. Use all the peppercorns.
2. Heat a cast iron skillet or other heavy skillet on medium high heat and melt the butter in the skillet.
3. Once the butter has melted and the pan is quite hot, place the steaks in the skillet and sear for two minutes. Flip the steaks and repeat on the other side. From here, you can flip the steaks and cook, then flip again and cook until desired doneness is achieved. Steak cooked this way is best enjoyed cooked no more than medium, but medium-rare is ideal. Keep in mind that the steak will continue to cook for a couple of minutes when you remove it from the heat, so cook it to just below where you want it to end up. Also be aware that this method of cooking will likely create a lot of smoke, so a good exhaust fan and an open window are a nice touch.
4. Remove the steaks to a plate and let stand for five to ten minutes before serving. Slice against the grain and serve with any pan juices that remain.