Classic Steak Dinner
I love nothing more than a nice, steakhouse dinner. But balling on a student budget doesn't allow that often. Good sales at grocery stores though? I'll take it! You can easily recreate a steakhouse dinner at home by knowing how to properly cook a steak. And honestly, once you learn how to do this at home, you won't want to spend all that extra cash on a steak when you're out at a restaurant anyway.
To start, you'll need a quality steak. I prefer a thinner-cut ribeye. It's delicious, tender, and has just the right amount of fat to keep the steak juicy after searing in a pan. Getting a thinner cut allows for a quick dinner and reduces food waste; I'd rather fully enjoy a nice meal than worry about spending too much money on something that won't be that great after reheating it the next day.
The longest part of the meal was baking the potatoes, which took about an hour and a half. I didn't cook the steaks until after the potatoes were out of the oven and cooling since they take less than 10 minutes to sear. Recreating this steakhouse dinner was easy to do and resulted in this gorgeous meal for my mom's birthday (or any other special occasion)!
Reina's Go-To Steak Dinner
Cook time: 20 minutes, including resting time
2-3 tbsp salted butter
2 thin-cut ribeye steaks, patted dry
Freshly cracked black pepper
Over medium heat, let your cast iron skillet come to temperature. If you don't have a cast iron skillet, you can also do this in a stainless steel frying pan. Either way, I prefer cast iron for my steaks because it allows the steak to get a great sear and crust.
While the pan is heating, pat dry the steaks with a paper towel to remove any excess moisture. You want the steak nice and dry before putting it in the pan. Once the pan is hot, add the butter and let it melt. Here is when you'll liberally season the steaks with kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper. Waiting until just before cooking to add the salt will avoid excess moisture getting drawn out of the meat.
I prefer allowing my butter to get slightly brown and toasty; this helps develop a deep, nutty flavor with tons of punch. If you choose to do this, just be mindful about browning the butter because there's a fine line to toe before the butter burns (peep a quick rundown about brown butter here).
Next, put the steaks in the pan and leave them alone. Here is where they'll sizzle and go crazy searing but you don't want to move them. I prefer medium-rare steaks, so I cook them for 3-4 minutes on each side, only flipping once. Essentially, put the steak in the pan. Wait 4 minutes, flip, cook for 3 minutes on the other side. Remove the steaks from the pan and put them on a plate and let them rest for at least 10 minutes. This allows the juices to redistribute.
Serve each steak with a fluffy and crispy baked potato topped with your favorite toppings. I went with a little pat of butter, herbed Greek yogurt, and fresh chives. Simple and filling!