Holiday time perfect for Porterhouse steak
Sometimes all I need is a stroll through our cool little town of Berlin to realize what a quaint and wonderful place it is. Not having been able to snap into the holiday spirit yet, I decided with the kids to do a 12 Days of Christmas gift giving crusade for my wife, and Berlin seemed like the perfect place for ideas.
Heading downtown to pick up said gift as well as gift cards for bus drivers, teachers et al, I stopped in to see Pete at SiCuli, the latter one of our favorite Italian eateries. After eating a Fiery Soppressata pizza in three bites, a record if memory serves, I went to Ta-Da and then to JJ Fish where I found the perfect gift for Day 3.
On the wall was a shelf of knitted socks that were mismatched with the slogan Life’s too short to wear matching socks! I chortled inwardly as I recalled my exhausted wife exclaiming earlier in the day as she sorted the kids’ socks, “Grrr. Two damn mismatched socks. Every load!”
The socks were well-received, and I am finally getting into the groove. It was the nice day that I needed to get the Christmas spirit alive and kicking again and I went home with a little more spring in my step.
As it is once again a warmer day wedged in between the frigid ones, it seemed only fitting to grill the steak that I procured in Delaware. We are steak lovers but the steak needs to be cooked correctly. Below is a simple recipe with some important steps that will help you to achieve steak mastery.
When I go to a decent butcher and the porterhouses are looking good, I tend to ask for a hand cut 2-inch or bigger steak. I also ask for the cut to come from the Top Loin so that there is a sizable Filet Mignon adjacent to the beautiful New York Strip on the other side of the t-bone.
I am still trying to best the 2-pound Porterhouse that I ate in Arizona at Pinnacle Peak Steakhouse years ago. As they owned the steakhouse, the railroad and the cattle, the formidable ‘arterial dream come true’ was a mere $12.95 with all the fixins.
Today when I finished the steak, I was glad to have the opportunity to bring a smile to my wife, a steak to our table and a bit of the holiday spirit to get us happy and healthy through the season.
Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas.
1 each 1-2 lb. Porterhouse
Seasoning Blend, as needed (Recipe follows)
1 stick whole, unsalted butter melted
Compound butter of your choice
One seriously hot grill
Let steak ‘slack’ on counter (guard from hungry dogs and/or cats) until it warms up a touch. No I do not teach this in ServSafe but the steak will be cooked within the hour which puts it well within the 4-hour danger zone cutoff so you’ll be fine.
Turn on the grill and get it toasty
Coat steak liberally with steak seasoning and allow to sit for 10 minutes while you melt the butter and wait for the grill to come up to heat
Season grill using some oil and wipe it clean. If you repeat this a few times it will keep your proteins from sticking to the grill as fastidiously as they tend
Lay steak on the grill at a 45° angle to the bars and grill for 5 minutes, or until you have nice lines
Turn steak over to the other side. Some chefs like to finish one side and then go to the next for the last two turns. I prefer not to do that since the meat will curl as it contracts under the heat. Turning it from top to bottom helps to keep it more balanced as it cooks
On your third turn, place steak on the grill so that you will have the famous hash marks and cook for another 4 or 5 minutes
Finish steak on the fourth side and do one of two things; either finish on grill if it is a thinner steak or pop it in the oven to finish if it is a 2-pounder like I prefer
Cook the steak to an internal temperature of 135° F / medium rare and pull from the heat
Allow to rest for another 10 minutes if you have the patience and serve with compound butter or brush with melted butter, whichever works for you
Seasoning Blendmake as you need, but not much more
3 parts sea salt, coarse
2 parts granulated garlic, not powder
1 part onion powder
1 part blackening seasoning
1 part black pepper, coarse
Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl and whisk vigorously, making sure that you don’t breathe it in as it will make you cough like crazy
Store in an airtight container until ready to use, but use it within a week. Ever wonder how much flavor is left in your spice blends that you bought in the antebellum era? Just get rid of them and buy new. Or even better, if you are a hoarder who just can’t seem to let go of your old spices, donate them to someone who can use them. You’ll feel better.