I set the fire alarm off at least 10 times last night. I was just trying to cook a steak.
I swear it's not my fault. Nothing burned, nothing bubbled over, and nothing caught on fire. I think our sensors are just too sensitive. Now I'm almost scared to cook another steak.
That being said, it was a pretty damn good steak--worth the scrambling around trying to deactivate the alarms. I found some Prime New York steaks from Ralph's that were absolutely amazing. The even marbling on these bright red steaks were beautiful--and at such a reasonable price. Only $6 per steak! You can't beat that.
To go with the steaks, I made a tasty red wine, mushroom reduction. I'll be honest, I used a Two Buck Chuck Merlot from Trader Joe's for this, but trust me, it worked out just fine. The wine turned the mushrooms into an intense purple color. They bore a striking resemblance to kalamata olives...
Red Wine Mushrooms
1 clove of garlic
1 cup crimini mushrooms
1/2 cup red wine
1 tablespoon butter
1. Melt 1/2 tablespoon butter in saucepan
2. Add minced shallots, garlic, and sliced crimini mushrooms
3. Salt and pepper the mushrooms
4. Add red wine and let it reduce
5. Finish the sauce with the other 1/2 tablespoon of butter
Medium Rare New York Steak
1-inch thick New York steaks, at room temperature
coarse sea salt
freshly-cracked black pepper
1. Salt and pepper both sides of the steak
2. Sear in a nonstick skillet without any oil for 5 minutes on each side, 10 minutes total
3. Remove from pan and let rest for 5 minutes to allow juices to redistribute
4. Slice and marvel at the gorgeous medium rare pink color
*This is now my fool-proof method for medium rare steaks. I surprised myself with how well they turned out. The 5 minute rule is great! Trust me.
I have to confess: I am currently having a shameless affair with fennel--and I mean the bulbous kind of fennel. I may or may not have made a trek to Ralph's today just for a single bulb of fennel. I've been making this simple apple fennel slaw with just thinly sliced fennel, apples, lemon juice, salt, and pepper and going through a bulb a day. Today, I added it to my leftover-steak sandwich on deliciously toasty ciabatta bread from the BreadBar in Century City with some sliced Campari tomatoes on the vine and crumbly French sheep's milk feta. It was ridiculously good for being leftovers.