Low Fat, Atkins-Friendly Steak & Rapini

Steak and Rapini are a great combination.  I was in the mood for a striploin today but didn’t want to feel super heavy and bloated after dinner (like I usually do).  So I stayed away from carbs and filled up on good old meaty protein.

I simply pan-fried (yes, grilling would have been even healthier) my steak in a tablespoon of vegetable oil (high smoke point i.e. it gets really hot) with sea salt and cracked black pepper, for about 2 minutes per side until it was perfectly rare. I prefer frying steaks in a cast iron skillet, as you get the nicest crust, but thick stainless steel will also do the trick.

The trick to cooking a great steak is in the heat of the pan and letting it be.  It is so important to let your pan heat up until it’s almost too hot and the oil is just about the smoke.  This way, when you add your steak to the pan, the heat won’t drop too much, and your steak will fry up nicely.  The ONLY way to get a nice, even, caramelized crust through what they call the Maillard Reaction is to place the steak in the pan and leave it.  Whatever you do, DO NOT FUSS WITH IT.  To develop the crust, it needs constant contact with the hot surface, so the more times you move it around, the less of a crust you will end up with. Also, throwing a little bit of butter in there about 30 seconds before you take it out will definitely help!

Meanwhile, I trimmed and washed my rapini and heated my wok.  Once heated, with about a teaspoon of olive oil, I threw the rapini into the wok.  I sliced some garlic into rather large pieces and added those as well.  I seasoned with salt and pepper and covered it so that it would slightly steam, to get the crunch out of the thick stems.

And, voila! Easy, tasty, satisfying, and low-fat! It is even Atkins-friendly!

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Published in: on November 4, 2010 at 7:58 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Steak Frites

Nothing is better than Steak Frites done right.

The secrets you need to know:

1.  Always sear your steak in REALLY HOT pan.  Let the pan heat up for a minute or two and add the oil – if it starts to smoke, it’s hot enough.

2.  DON’T OVERCROWD THE PAN.  If your pan isn’t big enough, sear your steaks separately.  The last thing you want is an overcrowded pan.  The hot pan will cool down substantially if it is overcrowded with meat, and steaks that are too close to each other with cause steam to form.  This will essentially mean you are steaming your steaks and you will never get a nice crust – eww.

3.  Get a thick cut – at least 1 1/2 inches thick.

4.  Have your oven preheated to 450 (throw your thick steak in once you have a nice caramelized crust, until its to your desired doneness)

5.  Blanch your fries before you crisp them up! Fry your potatoes at a low temperature (325-350) until they are soft and cooked through, but not browned.  Then, increase the temperature of your oil (to 375-395) and let them get crispy.  Also, make sure to salt your fries as soon as they come out of the fryer to ensure the salt sticks!

Published in: on October 15, 2010 at 4:38 pm  Leave a Comment  
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