July 6th, 2015

It’s Grilling Season: Indirect Heat vs. Direct Heat

Grilling Steak

When grilling steak, you’ve got to master the art of using direct heat AND indirect heat. A combination of the two is best when you’re cooking steak.

Direct heat is just that – placing the meat directly above the heat source (the flame on a grill). The lid is open and this method is best used to first sear the steaks. Yum!

After the searing over direct heat is done, you can move to indirect heat. That’s when you use the reflected heat to cook the meat with the lid closed. Use the area of the grill set up for this – many times the center of the cooking grate. The meat is not directly over a flame but is getting cooked good and juicy.

But the more you open the lid the longer it takes when using indirect heat. Keep that in mind.

Really great steaks require both direct and indirect heat to make them truly special. And the extra time it takes makes all the difference in your final product.

So get out there and use that direct and indirect heat to your advantage this grilling season!


July 1st, 2015

What To Bring To a Cookout?

Cookout Combination

It’s cookout season!

Let’s say you’re INVITED to a cookout instead of hosting one.

It could happen.

What do you bring?

Baked Beans

You could start with a side dish like baked beans, macaroni and cheese or a trusty potato salad.

Those are always good contributions.

You could also bring wine. You can never have enough wine at a get-together.

Steak and Wine Pairings

And if you know what the main course is, try a great wine pairing from this guide. It’s always a bonus to bring the PERFECT wine!

Still not satisfied? Just ask the chef! The host may have something in mind and you can make sure what you bring will be eaten and enjoyed.

Simple!


June 8th, 2015

Steak Grilling Times

Steak Grilling Combo

You’ve got your steak marinated, it’s on the grill and your mouth is watering. But wait!

How long does it stay on the grill?

I don’t panic about this question because I use this clever grilling app that comes with a steak timer. It tells you the perfect steak grilling times for all your steaks – filet mignon, ribeye, Porterhouse steak, strip steak and more.

Want it rare? It’ll tell you!

Medium? Follow the instructions and you’ll have the steak you want.

Take it easy this summer and use all the tools at your disposal and you’ll have the perfect steaks every time!


June 5th, 2015

Steak Cuts Guide

Steak Cuts Guide

Do you wonder what’s the difference between a Filet Mignon and a Sirloin steak? A Ribeye or a T-bone steak?

What the heck is Top Sirloin?

This Steak Cuts Guide will show you the way.

Each steak cut comes from a different place on the steer and that means a distinct texture, marbling and taste. When you know what to expect you can adjust your cooking times and your taste buds’ expectations.

Educate yourself on these cuts – everything from origin to cooking tips – and you’ll be an expert in no time!

Impress your friends, family and colleagues! Makes an excellent party trick! Steaks sold separately.


May 13th, 2015

Terrific Tailgate Ideas

Burgers on Board

Okay, I’m competitive.

And when I’m tailgating I want my tailgate experience to be better than the guy next to me.

I want to be the queen of the parking lot.

But you can have the greatest décor, fancy plates, perfect music –if your food doesn’t stand out you don’t stand a chance.

So….

I always have steakburgers and all-beef hot dogs. People love ‘em, kids love ‘em and they’re mainstays. But I like to keep it fresh with maybe some Top Sirloin sandwich steaks. You know, just to keep people on their toes. Expect the unexpected.

Then, I might offer some Wagyu steak. There’s no rule that says tailgating has to be low brow. Give the people what they want!

So while I’m grilling steak I like to glance over at people with their scary sausages and plastic cheese. Maybe they’ll take a page outta my book next time and really get serious.

Hey, a terrific tailgate is all about the food!


April 6th, 2015

Baseball Tailgating Ideas

Burgers and Hot Dogs

We all know that baseball season is just another excuse to tailgate. And that makes me so, so happy!

Watching America’s pastime while eating a steakburger is pure heaven for me. And gathering friends to tailgate together makes it that much sweeter.

Since the weather is starting to warm up, we like to take it outside and throw some steaks on the grill. And burgers, too!

A really nice twist is some delicious sirloin steak sandwiches. Sandwiches are always a hit. But put some steaks inside there and you’ve got fans for life!

What are your favorite baseball tailgating treats?


March 11th, 2015

Primed for USDA Prime

USDA Prime Filet Mignon

Know what time it is?

It’s Prime Time!

I like to treat myself to some really high quality USDA Prime steaks when the mood strikes. And when I do, I know I’ll get steaks that are tender and finely marbled and – most importantly – delicious!

The cold weather has me searching for any way possible to change my mood to a sunnier one. And, well, great food does that for me!

What I really like, especially when my mother comes over, are some Super Trimmed Filet Mignons. She’s a big fan of the petite tenderness of filets. And when they’re USDA Prime – they’re that much tastier.

Good food and good people definitely put me in a better mood. And that’s good for everyone around me.

So what are your cold weather blues solutions? Do they involve Prime steaks, too?


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!


March 2nd, 2015

What is the Best Steak?

Dinner for Two Club

That question is like saying, “Who is your favorite child?”

How can you possibly answer?

There’s no question the QUALITY of a steak is a good measure. And grade – like USDA Prime steaks or even Wagyu Kobe beef – makes a difference.

But what is the best cut? Depends on what you’re after.

Want something tender and juicy? Filet mignons. Hands down.

Hearty and meaty? Ribeye, T-bone steaks and Porterhouse steaks.

Flavorful? Kansas City strip steaks. Definitely.

So… what is the best steak TO YOU?

That answer will probably be different for everyone. And that’s one thing I love about steak!


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 18th, 2015

Steak and Wine Tasting Tips

Steak and Wine Pairings

I’m always confused which wines to serve with which dishes. I need a personal guide (maybe a cheat sheet) to help me navigate this territory.

I know that the right wine can bring out the flavor of a great steak – and vice versa. So I really want to get this right!

This handy chart shows us just what wine to serve with every meal – namely steak.

Want to serve beef tenderloin tips? Pair them with a nice Zinfandel for optimal flavor acceleration.

How about Sirloin steak? A lovely Mendoza will enhance the meal beautifully.

Try it for yourself and you’ll be a steak and wine pairing expert in no time!


January 5th, 2015

New Year’s Resolution Ideas for Foodies

By

combGrill_09_lrgc2

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.


January 2nd, 2015

15 Ways to Beef Up Your 2015

By

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We beef lovers have so many choices when it comes to main courses. And it’s so fun to be able to explore all those options.

This is my list of 15 ways you can BEEF up the new year in style:

  1. Applewood Bacon Wrapped Filet Mignon
  2. Tenderloin Medallions
  3. Chateaubriand
  4. Flat Iron Rubbed Steak
  5. Steakburgers!
  6. Peppercorn and Sea Salt Kansas City Strips
  7. Flank Steak in Sweet BBQ Sauce
  8. Beef Brisket
  9. Caramelized Onion and Gorgonzola Sliders
  10. All Beef Hot Dogs
  11. Wagyu Kobe Beef
  12. Garlic and Herb Prime Rib Roast
  13. BBQ Beef Burnt Ends
  14. Porterhouse Steak
  15. USDA Prime Bone-In Ribeye Steak

So many choices … and only a year to get through them.

Now go get some beef and start working on this list. This’ll be fun!

Photo courtesy of KansasCitySteaks.com.


December 31st, 2014

New Year’s Meal Pairing Ideas

By

ChickenSpedini_lg

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

photo-1

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?


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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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