Wednesday, February 26, 2014

A Gal's Guide to Steak

Steak. You love it, you're kinda meh about it or it grosses you out. I was in the last category up until I met my husband and fell gloriously in love with the deliciousness he would create from steak. (oh and him, yeah I fell gloriously in love with him too!)

So what was it about Ry guy's steaks that converted me? A little love and bacon grease. Doesn't that just solve about everything?
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But don't ask me to grill it for you, I'd rather bake it! Yep, bake it! So here's my guide to all the gals out there looking to make a great steak fo yo man! In less than 15 mins. you'll be the perfect significant other noshing away on your perfect steak! Like her...
Image cred: Gaia Health Blog

Anyways. First, decide on  the type of cut you want, I chose NY Strip (see my "steakpendix" below). No matter what you choose, make sure they're at least an inch and a half thick!

Bring that steak home and don't put it in the fridge! Leave it out to come to room temp. Also heat your oven to 350. While you're at it, prep a cast-iron skillet by putting it over some really low heat. 

After your steak is room temperature, salt and pepper both sides of the cut.

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Now, its bacon time. So guilty confession, we save the grease from bacon in a mason jar that we keep in the fridge at all times. If you have it, great, use it. If you don't, substitute canola oil.

At this time, you can crank the skillet heat up as well.

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Drop 2 tbs. of bacon grease into your hot skillet, it should sizzle and immediately start melting.

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Now, time to lay your steaks into that beautiful sizzling grease. I recommend using long stemmed tongs to do this so that you don't get burned!

You're going to cook these for about 2-3 minutes on each side. These were pretty large steaks, so I cooked them for the good 3 mins on each side.

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Next, pop that whole skillet with the steaks in it in the oven. Leave it well and alone for 5 minutes.
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Remove your steaks and let them rest with a piece of tin foil laid over the top very lightly, don't close it all the way off. Leave them for 10-15 minutes (or as long as your gurgling stomach will let you).
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Ta-da!!!!! You did it! Isn't that easy peasy!?

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Now plate it up and get ready to blow. your. man's. mind. Seriously, screw the wedding chicken, I think a lot more guys will be ready to pop the question after trying this masterpiece.

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  • Steaks of your choice

  • Sea salt to coat each side

  • Pepper to coat each side

  • ~2 Tbs. Bacon Grease (can substitute canola oil)
Let me know if you all ended up trying this method and have any tips for the group!



The "Steakpendix"

aka: My common gal definitions for the three types of steak I would use for this recipe.

Any of these will work for this method, the key is just to make sure it’s at least an inch and a half thick. Here’s the three I would choose from and why:
  • NY Strip – This is my fav cut and what I used for this post. It’s #1 in my book because it’s the perfect combination of fat to meat ratio (aka: it has good marbling) and is usually about middle of the road in $$. It’s also sometimes only a $1 or $2/lb more compared to Ribeye. Again, key is to get a thick piece.

  • Ribeye – The Ribeye is reaching Cher Horowitz status y'all (Clueless, anyone?). Its quickly becoming more popular because people are starting to realize that in this highly marbled steak, fat content = flavor. But beware! Fat can harden if you cook it too fast and be gristley (ew!). It is the least expensive of the three. If you can't find a thick one, you may need to reduce the oven time some.

  • Filet/Filet Mignon/Tenderloin – Obviously, we all love a good filet and know it’s more expensive. Keep in mind a filet is the tenderloin of the beef, you know, like pork tenderloin, but cut into the little thick pieces you see in the store. If you’re up to it, buy the whole tenderloin, cut your own and freeze the rest for later. This one’s always delish, and in one of my favorite steak dishes – Beef Wellington!
(side note, if you slice the steak to plate it, cut against the grain. I didn’t do that this time around, but Ry usually does that when he cooks steak)

Monday, February 17, 2014

Southeastern Salvage Is Where It's At!

We recently ventured to the Eastern Shore for the first time to visit the little town of Cape Charles. It was such a beautiful place and we're super excited Mom may be looking to have a place there and be closer to us!!!!

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While on that side of Virginia, we stopped by a home store that's called Southeastern Salvage in South Carolina, but in Virginia is called by the parent company name, Home Emporium. Mom finds the best things there in SC so we couldn't wait to check out the one nearest us in Chesapeake.

Here's a look into the store, great finds and great prices:
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Not a looker from the outside, but trust me, you'll be happy once you walk inside!

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This was one of my favorite finds! I was so excited that we got to take this beauty home with us that day. I've been eyeing a similar one at Pottery Barn ($799) that's half the size and one at Restoration Hardware ($1795). This one is quality built, 6' long and the perfect price at just $499!

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The store is a little large and overwhelming, so you have to really be in the mood to shop and dig around :).

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I love these cowhide and leather bar stools!

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This couch was ginormous! If only I had a room large enough to fit this in...

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There were lots of pieces that reminded me of Restoration Hardware with all the tufts, metal and leather styles. The one pictured above is $4945 at Restoration Hardware, but only $1599 here.

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Only $169 each!

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I love round dining tables, this one was gorgeous at only $849.

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When it comes time for us to get the backyard summer-ready, I'll be making a trip back! They had great outdoor pieces like this bar set.

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See the white pergola back there? They had great lighting, we got two new fixtures, more to come soon on that!

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Ryan was a really good sport, I think all the cowhide, leather, nail heads (and rolly chairs) helped keep him interested.

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Mom has such an eye! She was great at picking out the best things among all the stuff!

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I was so, so in love with these footstools, I just don't have a place for them (right now anyway).

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Love the new basket/hat Mom!

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Oh the detail!

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These table bases were great and they also had varying styles of glass to go on top.

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Yes, you're reading that right, only $49.

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Here is one of my favorite parts... cowhides for only $188/each!!! They had all different color combos and styles.

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Ryan found them very comfortable as well.

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Speaking of rugs, they just had the best assortment! This one was on sale for $199!

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Oh and they don't have heat, so dress warm... or grab a cowhide as an extra layer!

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When we drove around to pick up our goodies, I spotted all these great garden stools outside. I'll definitely be back when the weather warms up!

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(the pineapples on his little rear are just presh!)

So who's ready to jump in the car and get to the nearest Southeastern Salvage/Home Emporium right this second?! Stay tuned, photos of the finds we brought home to come soon!

Happy home shopping!

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