April 22nd, 2015

The Best Way to Grill a Steak

Filet Mignon on Grill

When you learned how to grill steak, no doubt you just covered the basics.

That’s what we all do in the beginning.

But now that you’re a bona fide steak aficionado, we’ve got to step up our technique a bit.

People are counting on you.

Grilling steaks is an artform. But like all art, there are some guidelines to follow, then you can put your own artistic flair on it.

Watch this steak grilling video for some great chef advice on the best way to grill a steak.

Then, use this handy dandy steak grilling chart for guidelines on how to achieve the doneness you desire for the cut you choose.

Check these steak cooking tips out for cut-specific tips. Yes, each cut has its own set of rules.

See? There’s so much to consider. It’s more than just flipping meat on a grill! But follow advice from chefs who know and you’ll have the greatest tasting steaks around!

 


April 8th, 2015

How To Clean a Grill Checklist

Filets Strips Ribeyes on Grill

So maybe your awesome Uncle Fred taught you how to grill a steak when you were a youngster. But did anyone ever tell you how to clean that grill?

Truly, the first rule of grilling great steaks is to start with a clean grill.

Here’s a checklist for spring cleaning your grill:

  1. Make sure burners are off.
  2. Use a wire brush to scrape off last season’s remnants.
  3. If your grates are removable, you can wash them in the dishwasher. Just remember to reseason them once you put them back on the grill.
  4. Check your burners for debris and brush off as necessary.
  5. Check the fuel line for cracks or loose connections.
  6. If propane, check fuel levels.
  7. Clean the exterior of the grill with soap and warm water.

Grilling steaks is an artform, but you’ve got to start with a clean canvas! Happy spring grilling, everybody!


March 4th, 2015

The Best Way to Cook a Steak Indoors

Filet Mignon and Crabcakes

I’ve been known to pull out my George Foreman Grill when I’m too cold to even think about going outside. I like the feeling of grilling my steaks even though I’m inside the house.

But grilling isn’t the only way to get the results we want from the comfort of our homes. True chefs prefer the pan searing method. And I can respect that. A good pan and the right love and care can bring out a beautiful flavor in a steak. You can read more about how to properly pan sear a steak here: http://www.kansascitysteaks.com/Recipe-Pan-Searing/Index.htm

And don’t forget you can always bake a steak in the oven. It’ll do the trick but you’ve got to watch them closely or they’ll come out dry.

Or, why not broil your steaks? I particularly like this method when I’m having filet mignons. So tasty!

Need some guidance on how to broil a steak? I KNOW I do. Check out this wonderful indoor cooking chart for all the steps including temperature and timing.

Don’t let your fear of the mountain of snow in your backyard deter you from cooking the steaks you crave this time of year. Just cook ‘em indoors!


February 27th, 2015

How To Cook a Fabulous Steak

Ribeyes on Grill

How did you learn to cook a steak? Did your parents teach you? Did a buddy in college show you the ropes?

Maybe, just maybe, they had a limited knowledge to share with you. Want to up your game a little bit?

Try using this grilling chart to customize the grilling experience depending on doneness and cut of steak. Yes, the cut makes a difference in grilling time as well.

Want to try broiling your steaks? Consult this indoor cooking chart according to type of meat and your desired doneness.

See? It’s not just a matter of eyeballing it and flipping occasionally. That’s what I used to think. But a few crispy, burned steaks later and I’m singing a different tune.

Just like anything, a little education and forethought go a long way toward cooking a fabulous steak versus a mediocre one.

Happy cooking!


February 23rd, 2015

Steak Doneness – Yep, It’s a Word!

Kansas City Strips on Grill

We all have our own opinions about how well done our steaks should be.

Like a lot of pink? Lots of people do. The rarer, the better.

But not everyone likes it that way. So…when you’re learning how to grill steaks, one element you MUST master is how to cook to doneness.

What if you’re hosting a barbecue and one guest likes her steak medium well? Do you know how to get it just right?

Do you know how to broil steaks and control the doneness? It’s all in the details, for sure.

Check out these cooking tips for instructions on how to master the art of doneness.

Your guests – and your steaks – will thank you for it!


January 5th, 2015

New Year’s Resolution Ideas for Foodies

By

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The new year is here!

Time to make some resolutions. And if you’re a foodie (and I know you are) at least one of them must involve food.

How about trying steak tartare in the new year?

Cooking beef bourguignon?

Maybe resolve to host more dinner parties?

For me, I’d like to teach my almost-teenage son how to grill a steak.

It’s a lesson every man or woman needs.

What are your foodie New Year’s resolutions? Happy cooking and eating in 2015!

Photo courtesy of KansasCitySteaks.com.


December 31st, 2014

New Year’s Meal Pairing Ideas

By

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I like meal ideas that are quick, but don’t cut corners. These full meal pairings help to get the dinner on the table fast without sacrificing quality and flavor. Plus, they’re not the same old same old.

Try ‘em in the new year!

  1. 3 Cheese Arancini (can be an appetizer or a side), Chicken Spiedini and Lemon Coconut Cake.
  2. Crabcakes, Filet Mignon and Red Velvet Cake.
  3. Lobster Flatbread, Veal Cutlets and Hand-Dipped Chocolate Macaroons.

Want more full meal ideas? Create your own customized meals here!

Happy (tasty) New Year!

Photo courtesy of KansasCitySteaks.com.


December 29th, 2014

14 Favorite Things From 2014

By

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What I should really call this post is “14 Things That Made Me Happy in 2014.”

A bit wordy. But more accurate.

The nightly news was filled with dramatically terrible things that happened this year – devastating weather events, shootings, etc.

For me, in light of all that can and will go wrong in the world, it’s been the day-to-day simple pleasures that brought a smile to my face. 2014 was filled with them. But you have to stop and look for them. These are mine, so here goes:

  1. Giggling through the movie Big Hero 6 with my youngest son. Animated. Silly. Perfection.
  2. A visit to the beach. Brief, but very necessary.
  3. Prince George’s Christmas photographs.
  4. That one time I had five minutes to myself in the bathroom. Moms and dads, you know what I’m talking about.
  5. Grilled steak on the patio, my husband pouring me a glass of wine and Garth Brooks on the radio.
  6. The love my dogs showed me every day.
  7. My husband’s silly texts. He’s got a way with emojis.
  8. My boys hitting the baseball over the fence. Exhilarating.
  9. Finding “Friends” reruns when I couldn’t sleep.
  10. Summer. Just the whole thing.
  11. “The Voice.” It’s a show my kids actually watched with me.
  12. Good friends coming to my rescue when I needed it most.
  13. Lupita Nyong’o. Don’t know who she is? Check her out.
  14. Gathering around the dinner table and seeing faces I adore.

This is my personal list for 2014. What’s yours?


December 26th, 2014

Those Glorious Christmas Leftovers

By

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It’s that time!

Leftover time!

The holiday dishes have all been put away, but there’s a delicious reminder in the fridge of all that merriment and cheer.

It’s turkey and Chateaubriand and prime rib roast and spiral ham all tucked in their Tupperware beds. Just waiting to be called upon for the Leftover Parade.

There are two ways to go about this.

One: Reheat and serve.

I’m partial to this one because I’m usually exhausted.

-OR-

Two: Repurpose those leftovers into equally dazzling second meals.

My sister-in-law Chef Sandy is a master at this.

Roast turkey becomes turkey soup, turkey stew, turkey enchiladas.

Spiral ham becomes ham omelettes and ham soup.

Chateaubriand? Why, beef sliders, of course!

What are your favorite leftover ideas? Time to whip them up!

Photo courtesy of KansasCitySteaks.com.


December 24th, 2014

Holiday Table Ideas

By

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Everyone has their own ideas of what makes a great holiday table.

Some cannot veer from the classic turkey, spiral ham and sides combo.

And I understand that. I’m in touch with that.

Sometimes, holiday time is the only time of year you serve those dishes.

But, for some, the holiday table allows you to try something out of the ordinary and special like Chateaubriand or prime rib.

The most important thing is that your holiday table makes YOU happy.

Have you ever served a nice salmon or lobster on your holiday table?

How about lasagna?

Tell me, what are you serving on your holiday table this year?

Photo courtesy of KansasCitySteaks.com.


December 22nd, 2014

Recipe for a Happy Life This Holiday Season

By

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What really makes you happy?

For me, it’s good food, good people and gratefulness.

Here’s my RECIPE for a happy life during the holidays (and all year ‘round):

 

Add equal parts juicy steak and potatoes

Place happy, smiling people around my table

Sprinkle liberally a good dose of humility and thankfulness

 

That’s it.

It’s simple, really.

If we all focus on the truly wonderful things we have in this life, there’s no room for the negative.

I did mention steak, though, too, right? Make sure there’s steak.

Hungry people tend to be grumpy.

The taste of a perfectly grilled steak with its hearty, yet tender, flavor makes everything right in my world. The happiness recipe definitely calls for steak.

Enjoy the holidays with this recipe, friends! And be sure to share it!

Photo courtesy of KansasCitySteaks.com.


December 16th, 2014

Delicious Holiday Desserts!

By

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We spend so much time during the holidays focusing on the mealsturkeys, hams, green beans – but let’s not forget the all-important dessert!

I love to have a variety of desserts to offer, not only because I will eat EVERY ONE of them, but because they are beautiful and everyone likes something different.

Some of my favorites are little holiday cheesecake bites (eat one or five – I won’t tell!), beautiful Buche de Noel (a timeless classic), and decadent chocolate macaroons.

What a gorgeous array these make! Seriously, just looking at these delicious desserts is almost as fun as eating them.

Almost.

What are YOUR favorite holiday desserts?

Photo courtesy of KansasCitySteaks.com.


December 12th, 2014

Easy Appetizers for a Stressless Holiday

By

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Remember how we’re going to cut down on the stress this holiday season?

Well, that extends to the appetizers, too.

Appetizers serve a few purposes:

  1. They give growling bellies something to do while the main entrée is finishing cooking.
  2. They create anticipation for the gorgeous meal ahead.
  3. They sometimes substitute for a main entrée for picky eaters.

So they’ve got to be good, right?

But GOOD doesn’t have to mean HARD.

Why not try some made-ahead appetizers that you just heat up or simply serve? Some of my favorites are baby brie bites, crabcakes, bacon and cheddar sliders and jumbo shrimp.

With a great variety like that, everybody is sure to be covered. And NO ONE will go hungry.

Here’s to a stress-free holiday!

Photo courtesy of KansasCitySteaks.com.


December 10th, 2014

Holiday De-Stressing Tips: Made-Ahead Sides

By

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With so much going on when you’re hosting a holiday dinner, it’s helpful to cut down on the last-minute scrambling by serving made-ahead side dishes.

Delicious options like twice-baked potatoes you just pop in the oven and steak butters to enhance the flavor of just about anything – from those steaks you have on hand to mashed potatoes with porcini mushrooms you simply heat in the oven.

Creamed corn that just requires heating up is also a great option that just about everybody loves. Don’t labor over EVERY side dish AND the main entree. Save your energy for the showstoppers!

Delicious AND easy is the way to go to keep stress at a minimum. Don’t let the food get you worked up. Remember, Aunt Susie will be there with her advice about your love life. Again.

THAT will be quite enough stress, thank you.

Photo courtesy of KansasCitySteaks.com.


December 8th, 2014

Tips for Making Your Holiday Less Stressful

By

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People are coming! People are coming!

Do those words strike fear in your soul?

Don’t fret. Plan!

Holiday time, while joyous, brings an enormous amount of stress. Especially if YOU are the host.

That’s why planning ahead is so important.

  1. Plan a menu now, taking into account who is coming, their dietary needs and preferences, and the time you’ll have to commit to cooking.
  2. Appetizers are important. I like to offer little bacon and cheddar sliders or lobster flatbread to satisfy appetites while I’m finishing up the main course. Nothing worse than grumpy, waiting guests. Plus, if for some reason a guest doesn’t dig the turkey you’re cooking there are other options to fill them up if needed.
  3. Grill or broil a few steaks to have on hand. Why? See #2. There may be guests who are too shy to share their taste preferences with you. You won’t know until you see them fake-nibbling off a virtually empty plate at dinnertime. If no one partakes of the gorgeous steaks, they WILL be eaten. Think of the bazillion mealtimes ahead with overnight guests.

What are YOUR favorite plan-ahead strategies to reduce stress during the holidays?

Photo courtesy of KansasCitySteaks.com.


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About Me

Hi! My name is Dena P., and I love steak. In fact, I’ve been on a quest for the perfect steak for a few years now.

I love experimenting with food and I like to get my family, friends and neighbors involved. They add a lot to my cooking experience by helping me perfect techniques and sharing recipes.

Read More About Me »

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