Saturday, November 16, 2013

Habanero Infused Margarita paired with a NY Strip

If you haven't noticed from my Instagram feed, I deal with stress by cooking.  I also celebrate good things by cooking.  And I cook when I'm bored.  Basically, it's about time I started adding some food pairings into my blog.  This is the first of many cocktails to be paired with food of some variety.

-NY Strip
-Sea Salt
-Black Pepper
-Black Truffle Oil

Make sure you get a steak with marbling.  This is not good marbling, but it's not bad.  Publix kinda let me down.  Note that if you get a grass-fed steak that isn't corn finished, it won't have marbling.  It will be healthier.  It won't taste as good, though.

 Season with sea salt and pepper on both sides.  Be very liberal on the salt.  This does science/magic things to the steak to make it taste better.  Either trust me on thus or check out any of Kenji Alt-Lopez's various columns on steak over at Serious Eats.  He's a fantastic human being.

While this is going down, preheat a skillet on about medium-high.  I prefer a cast iron because it's hardcore (this one is well-worn but well-loved through the generations of my family) but you can use a regular skillet, too.  I don't think the Maillard Reaction* works as well in a non-stick pan, but I have no science to back me up on that.

*The Maillard Reaction is the browning process that happens when meat is cooked at high temperatures and develops that amazing crust/char you want on your steak.

I like to cook the sides of the steak first, particularly the fat.  This produces some fantastic juice to cook the steak in.  Rotate the steak to get a nice sear on all sides.  Once the sear develops, start cooking each of the main sides of the steak.

Contrary to popular belief, it's okay to flip your steak more than once.  You won't lose any flavor or whatever people say happens.  But I don't, because I'm a baller.

Look at that char.  Beautiful.  When cooked to your desired temperature, pull the steak.  I was feeling medium so I went with about a 135F internal temperature.  

Let is rest for about 7 or 8 minutes.  Juices will collect so be sure to have something to catch them, like a piece of aluminum foil folded up around the edges.  While this is happening, work on the cocktail.


I've been watching a lot of Breaking Bad lately so I was in the mood for some Tequila.  This is a habanero pepper infused margarita that I like to call The Heisenberg.  

-1.5 oz tequila reposado
-.5 oz Aperol
-.5 oz ginger syrup
-Juice of a lime
-1 habanero pepper
-2 mint leaves
-1 large ice sphere

Slice and remove the seeds from the pepper.  Add it and the tequila to an ISI whipper.  Charge with 1 NO2 charge.  Shake and release gas after 30 seconds.  This results in a good, medium heat.  The longer you wait to remove the gas the more heat the tequila takes on, so be warned.  If you're not using an ISI whipper, here's a decent guide to doing it the old fashioned way:

After that, add everything but the ice and the mint to the shaker.  Stir with ice. Look at everyone getting friendly in there.  Mmmmmm.

Pour and double strain (Hawthorn and fine mesh) over the ice sphere in an Old Fashioned glass.  Firmly slap both mint leaves in the palm of your hand.  Rub one around the rim of the glass and garnish the drink with the other.


Now back to the steak.  Slice that sucker up.  

Pour the juice that collected in the foil over the top of the steak.

Now anoint the steak with a thin line of black truffle oil across the middle of the steak.

See the beautiful pink center.  Get excited.  Plate it with some sriracha.

Boom.  Get at it.  The heat of the sriracha plays well with the heat of the tequila.  The savory notes the pepper adds to the tequila also has some nice synergy with the truffle oil.  I've done this two nights in a row now, but with a barrel aged Manhattan the other time.  Doesn't work as well with the sriracha but there are few things that can beat a steak and a Manhattan.  If I try that again, I might swap the sriracha for a pepper sauce of some sort.


No comments:

Post a Comment