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Steak on a skillet: finish in butter or in oven?


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Steak on a skillet: finish in butter or in oven?

zhirzha | | May 17, 2011 06:20 PM

Hey, this is my first post here even though I've been reading and enjoyed your posts for a couple of years now...

I need your advice on cooking steak at home today, specifically filet mignon. Here is my "story": I used to have only cheap crappy $3 skillets so I was basically heating a mixture of olive oil and butter and fried my meat like that. The result was not as bad as you'd think. Now I finally have a proper cast iron skillet and I've tried Chow's "basic steak" (http://www.chow.com/food-news/54250/t...) a few times only to find out that my steak comes out _worse_ than with my old tried routine. It's always too dry! So I started experimenting a bit and I finally settled on a modified procedure where instead of finishing it in the oven I boil my steak in butter/oil mixture - it comes out very tender then. I've done this at least a dozen times and the results are pretty stable. What do you think?

At the risk of being boring here's my procedure:
I always buy this cut at the same store, I let it seat for about 30 mins at home temperature, cover it with olive oil and salt/pepper, heat my iron skillet in the oven at 500 F for 20 mins, then a few more mins on the stove top, put steaks on the dry skillet and wait 3 mins a side (or basically until it's unstuck), then put it in a mix of butter/olive oil and basically boil it in there for a few more mins (instead of returning the skillet to the oven), then cover it loosely with foil and let it sit there for another 15 mins. You might tell me it's not a "steak" anymore since it's boiled, but... it tastes good.