Cast Iron

Sunday Steak with French Butter

September 25, 2012
Author Notes

When you purchase your steaks you will be looking at two similar cuts. The T-bone and porterhouse look very similar but they are not. Both are cut from the short loin but the porterhouse is going to have a bigger cut of filet (tenderloin) than the t-bone. Look for good marbling, in other words how much fat is distributed in and around the actual red protein. You also want a little fat cap. The other thing I look for is, on the strip loin side of the steak sometimes about halfway down, you will notice a thin line of gristle that extends from the fat cap into the middle of the steak. It is very tough to chew and, while if you like your steak well done this won't affect you, I always try to avoid them. —thirschfeld

  • Prep time 6 hours 10 minutes
  • Cook time 16 minutes
  • Makes 4 servings
  • 2 porterhouse steaks, 1 pound each
  • 1 pinch Kosher salt
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon shallot, minced
  • 1 pinch Freshly ground white pepper
  • 1/2 fresh lemon
  • 1 splash Oil
In This Recipe
  1. At least 6 hours before and up to the day before you plan to cook the steaks place them on a cooling rack set over a tray with edges. You want to catch the drips.
  2. Season both sides of the steaks with salt. Put them back into the fridge uncovered until an hour before you want to cook them.
  3. Allow the butter to soften at room temperature. Meanwhile place the garlic, shallot and parsley into a mortar. Using the pestle bruise, crush, and pulverize the aromatics until they are mushy.
  4. Place the butter into a small mixing bowl and smear it around with a rubber spatula. Add the aromatics, a few drops of lemon juice, a pinch of salt and a few grinds of white pepper. Blend the butter until it is one shade of green with no streaks.
  5. You can either refrigerate the butter as is or you can roll it up in parchment pepper, then foil and twist the ends to form a round log. The foil allows the ends to stay sealed.
  6. When your are ready to cook the steaks, season both sides with fresh ground black pepper. Place a cast iron skillet over medium high heat. Add enough oil to coat the bottom of the pan. When the oil is hot -- you don't want it too hot but you want it to start searing right away -- add the steak. Cook the steak on both sides until it is very brown and caramelized. Remove the steak from the pan when it has reached one temperature below where you like. If you want it cooked medium then cook the steak to medium rare and so on. Remove the steak to a sheet tray.
  7. Cook the second steak in the same fashion. Both steaks can be cooked up to an hour in advance and left to sit at room temperature. Do not refrigerate them.
  8. In your oven place the top rack so it is about 8 to 10 inches from the broiler. Heat the broiler.
  9. Using a filet knife cut the meat from each side of the bone then slice the meat into smaller bit size pieces. Re-assemble the steaks on the sheet tray. Smear each steak with some softened maitre d'butter then place a small glob on each steak.
  10. Place the steaks under the broiler just long enough to melt the butter and heat the steaks through. Serve.

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