Sunday, October 4, 2009

Sunday Dinner Week #13: Naughty Steak

I've been watching The Naughty Kitchen on Oxygen about Chef Blythe Beck, an executive chef in Texas who keeps touting the idea that her food is naughty because she uses lots of butter and other bad for you ingredients that are so good. She's obnoxious, and her food doesn't really look that special, but for Ken's birthday, we are being a little naughty by bathing our steaks (bone-in NY steaks on sale at Safeway this week for $4.99/lb. plus the $2 off coupon) in real butter. It doesn't count as naughty steak if you don't use real butter.

What made the steak extra good was that the butter actually made the outside of the steak crispy, or butter crunchy. I think, as always, that the secret is in the pan. We used a well-seasoned large cast iron pan that holds the heat and browns the butter. Nice!

Go alongs: sweet onion carmelized tart and garlic and butter mushrooms.
Dessert: Double chocolate glazed red velvet cupcakes (Ken's on a cupcake kick).

Sweet Onion Carmelized Tart
1 sheet puff pastry
poke holes, crimp edges to create a crust, put into 400 degree oven until golden brown

slice onions, carmelize in olive oil and thyme
put on baked puff pastry and put into oven for about 5 minutes.

When we make this again, we will divide the pastry into thirds so each strip will have crust, because the edge of this tart with the crust is so much better than the middle. The onions are also good on the steak, even with the puff pastry.

Ken's Double Chocolate Glazed Red Velvet Cupcakes
Frosting on velvet cakes are normally vanilla frosting, but I like chocolate even though chocolate is my enemy (melting chocolate fiasco from week #4). The directions for the chocolate frosting calls for melting chocolate in the microwave for 5 minutes at 50% power, mixing halfway through. Nowhere did it say add fat, add dairy, add butter.

Again, FAILURE with the chocolate! My chocolate, half way through, turned into semi smooth, semi sticky, goopy mess. By the end of the 5 minutes, I had dusty, burnt crap. Attempt #2, scrap the microwave method. I cannot melt chocolate in my 23 year old microwave. I admit defeat and I'm moving on. The double boiler method wasn't working either until Ken added butter. Success.

Easy red velvet cupcakes
1 box German chocolate cake mix (it's cheating, but it's premeasured)
1 1/4 cup water
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 eggs
1 T baking cocoa
1 bottle of red food coloring (1 oz.) - I got it on sale, otherwise, this one ingredient makes this recipe expensive

Mix. The red food coloring turns the batter into a bright red, Halloween, fake blood color. Cool! Put into a 350 oven for 19-23 minutes for cupcakes (I lower it to 325 because I use dark, non-stick cupcake pans.) Cool.

Melt chocolate and mix in with some ready made chocolate frosting (this frosting cuts the sickening sweetness of the store bought frosting). Frost, enjoy.

Have a great week and happy grinding!

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