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Saturday, February 15, 2014

Steak Saint Agur

GLUTEN-FREE | DETOX-FRIENDLY



Grass-fed beef is worth going out of your way to find because it's health benefits are huge. (Find grass-fed beef at your local farmer's market.) It contains healthy fats in their natural form and ratio, and it's free of the pesticides and drugs found in conventional beef.

Conventional beef comes from cows who eat grains that are full of inflammatory omega-6 fats and laced with artificial flavors, pesticides, heavy metals, industrial waste, and drugs like antibiotics, anti-inflammatory medications, tranquilizers, cardiac stimulant drugs, anti-parasitic medications, growth-promoting hormones, and sex hormones including estradiol, progesterone, and testosterone.

Here I used a grass-fed strip loin steak but you can use any cut you like, as long as you can cook it on the stove top. Season it 24 to 48 hours in advance if you can. I used blood orange sea salt but regular sea salt works just fine.

To garnish the steak, I made a simple pan sauce with St. Agur cheese, my favorite French bleu. It has a moist and creamy consistency and a stunningly complex flavor.


If you don't have St. Agur, use any blue cheese that you like to finish the sauce. I also used a splash of cognac but you could substitute white wine or even mushroom stock.

I used duck fat to sauté the steak but you can use any saturated fat, like butter, lard, or rendered fat from pasture-raised animals. Unlike the unsaturated fats found in olive oil which are unstable, oxidize very easily, and trigger damaging free radical production in the body, saturated fats are stable and they can withstand the higher cooking temperatures that suit steaks best.

1 pound grass-fed steak(s) at room temperature and seasoned with Blood Orange Sea Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 tsp duck fat or grass-fed butter
1/4 cup cognac
2 ounces St. Agur or other blue cheese (about 1/4 cup packed)

Warm the duck fat in a medium cast iron or stainless steel skillet. Once hot, place the steak in the pan. Cook until it starts to brown and pull away from the pan, about 4 minutes on the first side. Flip it over and finish cooking it to your desired doneness, about 4 more minutes for medium rare if your steak is an inch and a half thick.

Transfer the steak to a plate and cover to keep warm. Allow it to rest for at least 10 minutes.

Reduce the heat to low and add the cognac. Use a whisk to scrape up any brown bits on the bottom of the skillet and cook for 2 minutes. Add the blue cheese, turn off the heat, and cover the skillet until the steak has finished resting.

Once the steak has rested for at least 10 minutes, add any juices that have collected beneath the steak back to the skillet. Whisk the sauce until smooth. Slice the steak if you wish and arrange it on a serving plate, then pour the sauce over the top and serve it immediately.

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