The sizzle of a thick steak searing on a hot grill is one of the best things about dining alfresco, and charred, crisp summer vegetables are the perfect addition to the summertime dinner table. Living in the city, I have no place for a barbeque grill, but I can enjoy the same flavors and textures in my kitchen or out on my balcony with a Staub steamgrill. Its heavy cast iron construction retains the heat needed to sear heavy cuts of steak, and its domed glass lid allows the addition of steam to cook meats and vegetables without drying them out like a gas or charcoal grill can. I’ve used it many times on the stovetop but my favorite way to use it is outdoors on a portable induction burner, the combination being so compact that I can place it in the middle of the table like a hibachi and cook as we eat, fondue style!
I like to marinate chunks of chicken and use skewers to put them on the grill a few at a time, alongside asparagus spears, quartered onions, wedges of fresh tomato, and green onions for a fresh and flavorful outdoor meal without the constant interruption of tending a conventional grill. It has a beautiful deep blue enamel outside and the interior has a textured black enamel that looks just like bare cast iron, but with really impressive non-stick properties, and no matter how charred and burnt it looks after use it always cleans up just like new with a brief soak and a quick scrub with a nylon brush. I’ve used it nearly a dozen times indoors and out, and as you can see in the photos, it still looks exactly like it did the day I took it out of the box!
A bit about choosing steaks; avoid the cheap cuts and buy the best steaks your budget will allow and choose thick steaks marbled with fat. If you don’t know which cuts are best for grilling, tell your butcher how you plan to cook and ask for their recommendation. We like New York strips for weekend meals, or filet mignon for special occasions.
Before grilling, thoroughly pat the steaks dry with paper towels to ensure a good sear, and season with coarse sea salt and cracked pepper just before placing on the grill. I like to char some thyme or rosemary sprigs alongside my steaks to add a bit more flavor as they cook. As the fat starts to run down between the grill ridges, and if you’ve got the pan hot enough it will smoke adding that characteristic grilled steak flavor, and if you prefer the wood smoked flavor of a charcoal grill, look for a smoked salt to use in place of sea salt. Always allow steaks to rest for 5-10 minutes on a plate before serving to allow the juices to be re-absorbed.
Even in hot weather red wine is the perfect companion to a juicy steak, and lately I’ve been enjoying Coppola’s diamond collection, their robust cabernet sauvignon has aromas of wild berries, dark cherries, cloves, anise and toasted oak that pairs very nicely with grilled beef and summer vegetables.
Grilled New York Strip Steak with Fresh Thyme served with Francis Ford Coppola’s Diamond Collection Cabernet Sauvignon
2 New York Strip Steaks (1½ – 2 inches thick)
Fresh sprigs of thyme
cracked black pepper
Preheat a stovetop grill pan over medium-high heat until the temperature reaches 475’F. Arrange the room temperature steaks on a plate or cutting board and pat dry both sides, then just before cooking sprinkle liberally with fresh, coarse-ground black pepper and sea salt, gently pressing it into both sides. Place the steaks in the preheated, non-oiled grill pan (Tsssssss! There’s the sound I was talking about!) and cook according to your preference.
Please see below for cooking times for
For rare doneness cook for 3-4 minutes per side.
For medium doneness cook for about 5 minutes per side.
For medium well doneness cook about 6 minutes per side.
For well done cook for 7 minutes per side.
When the first side is grilled or seared, flip the steak with tongs as using a fork will allow the juices to escape from the steak. Add fresh thyme a few minutes before the steak is done to incorporate a hint of the herb flavor throughout the steak. Place cooked steaks on the cutting board and allow them to rest for 5-10 minutes and sprinkle with a little sea salt just before serving.