It was "Ranch" night at my house tonight so we went out and butchered one of our prized heifers and fried us up some steaks (too rainy to grill). My Gigi lived on a ranch for years and years so I called her up to get her expert advice on pan fryin' a steak. A good, marbled steak will have a lot of flavor and you can cut the big chunks off afterwards. Note, this isn't a "low fat" dinner. It isn't for you faint of heart women who get all weak in the knees when you're talkin' butcherin' and meat fat!
Start with a nice hot skillet with about a tablespoon of olive oil in it. After it gets nice and bubbly, kick in another tablespoon of butter ("everythin's better with butta"). I don't know why you mix the two, I just do what Gigi tells me to. Gigi knows all things pan frying.
Salt and pepper both sides of your steaks with some good, fresh pepper and sea salt.
A yummy side dish with your pan fried steaks are fried potatoes. Boil a heap of red taters and when they are just a bit softened drain them and let cool. Slice them up and then throw them in a hot pan also oiled up with olive oil. Add a good dose of salt, pepper and either onions or onion seasoning. Get them good and brown and serve them with your steaks and choice of steamed veggies (you gotta get some healthy food in there and we like carrots or green beans).
You want to "sear" them on a good high heat; about 2-3 minutes on each side. Reduce the heat down to a medium low and cover. Cook to your preference. Jeff likes them Medium and I'm a girl who likes it good and done so I have to let mine cook a good 10 minutes longer than his. I would love to give you some cooking times because that's what a really good recipe would do but truthfully it all depends on the thickness of your steaks. If you're going to pin me down on a cooking time I would say to do it the same amount of time you would if you were grilling it. If you are really are clueless, give me a call or shoot me an email and we'll talk thickness and times and I'll give you my best guesstimate.
A few things to remember before you serve those babies up:
1) Searing it locks in the juice
2) The less you mess with it, i.e. flipping it, the better for the steak
3) Always let your steak "rest" a good 5 minutes before serving.
A good red wine, we chose a Merlot, always goes great with Ranch night. Mmm. Go ahead and get started on the bottle even before dinner; its been a long day. Ooh, I almost forgot: what Gigi is famous for...her pan fried steak pan gravy. Get out good! After you pull your steaks off and you're letting them rest, throw a can of evaporated milk in the hot pan. Stir up all those yummy bits, juice and milk until just barely boiling. Pull it off and serve it up (remember if it boils too hot or long it will curdle). The gravy is yummy over the steaks and taters.
So now you can have Ranch night at your house. Even if you're a little squeamish talkin' beef your husband will just love you for Ranch night. Hot Jeff is a carnivore and loves Ranch night; he gives me those sweet bedroom eyes and shouts out a "yeehaw" with his steak knife high in the air; he's an ol' cowpoke at heart.