Wednesday, June 13, 2012

The Best Man Meal Ever

I fell in love with this winter's Celebrity Cook Off with Rachael Ray and Guy Fieri!  I even convinced my husband to watch a few episodes with me.  On one show, Summer Sanders had to grill up a manly rib eye and I was so inspired I wanted to try it myself.  Well, the cast iron griddle my husband had just purchased might have also helped!  On the show, Summer was required to serve her steak with a compound butter, and I wanted to try that too, so after consulting Google, I decided on one of Rachael Ray's recipes.  After all, she was Summer Sanders's mentor too, so why not try her dish?!  The steak recipe I found came with a swiss chard recipe, which was also intriguing, since I'd never worked with that type of greens before...and I had a Martha Stewart pasta and squash dish I'd been wondering about, so I decided to try those as well! My meal ventured off the beaten path of my normal steak, baked potato, and Caesar, but I'm so glad it did!  This was a fabulous meal, amazingly manly, and perfect for Father's Day on Sunday!

The Perfect Rib Eye:
3 bulbs garlic, ends cut to expose cloves plus 2 large cloves, finely chopped
olive oil
salt and pepper
1/3 cup dry sherry
4 tablespoons butter, softened
1 tablespoon dried parsley
1/2 tablespoon dried thyme
1 package dried shiitake mushrooms
1 cup beef stock
1 shallot, finely chopped
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons coarse black pepper
1 cup ketchup
2 large rib eye steak, 1 1/2- to 2-inches thick

Preheat oven to 425. Drizzle garlic bulbs with oil and season with salt and pepper. Wrap tightly in foil and roast to tender, 45 minutes. Reserve 1 head for the Swiss Chard Au Gratin. Add cast-iron pan to oven to preheat.

Squeeze cloves from remaining 2 bulbs garlic into the bowl of a food processor. Add sherry, butter, parsley, thyme, salt and pepper. Pulse process into a paste and reserve.

For the steak sauce, simmer mushrooms in stock to reconstitute and soften. Let reduce, 15-20 minutes, then transfer to a food processor and purée. In a small pot over medium heat, sauté shallots and 2 cloves finely chopped garlic in a drizzle of olive oil to soften. Add puréed shiitake stock, balsamic, Worcestershire, brown sugar, pepper and ketchup, and simmer to thicken 20 minutes over low heat.

Bring meat to room temperature, 30 minutes to 1 hour. Pat meat dry and rub with a drizzle of oil. Season aggressively with salt and pepper. Remove hot cast-iron skillet from oven and place over medium-high heat. Add steak to hot pan and grill 5-7 minutes on each side, or until desired doneness.  Remove meat and let rest before serving.

Slather steak with garlic sherry butter, slice and top with steak sauce.

Swiss Chard Au Gratin:
2 1/4 to 2 1/2 pounds Swiss chard or rainbow chard, 3 or 4 large bundles
4 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup flour
1 1/4 cups milk
1 bulb roasted garlic from steak recipe, cloves squeezed from skins and pasted 
1 cup freshly shredded parmesan cheese, divided

Heat oven to 400 with a rack in the middle of oven.

Bring a large pot of water to boil.

Stem chard, leaving the leaves whole. Salt boiling water, add chard and wilt – pot will be packed at first. Boil chard 10 minutes, drain in a colander and run under cool water. Let drain and squeeze out excess liquid in a clean kitchen towel. Chop.

Meanwhile, heat butter over medium heat. Whisk in flour, cook 1 minute, then whisk in milk. Season with salt, pepper and a little nutmeg. Stir in roasted garlic paste. Thicken sauce to coat the back of a spoon and adjust seasonings to taste.

Layer half the greens in a medium casserole (8-10” long). Top with half of the béchamel sauce and half the cheese. Repeat layers, ending with cheese.  Bake 15 minutes.

Baked Shells with Winter Squash:
butter for baking dish
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 large onions, halved and thinly sliced
coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
1 pound large pasta shells
2 cups roasted butternut squash puree (or 12 ounces frozen puree, thawed)
1 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 cup panko bread crumbs

Preheat the oven to 400.  Butter a 9-by-13 baking dish.  Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat.  Add the onions; season with salt and pepper.  Cover and cook until onions are soft and release their liquid, about 15 minutes.  Uncover, raise the heat to medium, and cook until browned, about 20 minutes.  Stir in 1 teaspoon of the rosemary.

Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a large pot of salted boiling water for 2 minutes less than the package suggests.  Drain.  Return the pasta to the pot.

Stir the squash into the onions until combined.  Toss the squash and onion mixture with 1/2 cup of the parmesan and the pasta.  Transfer to the prepared baking dish.

Combine the bread crumbs with the remaining olive oil, rosemary, and parmesan.  Season with salt and pepper.  Sprinkle evenly over the pasta mixture.  Bake until golden brown, 10-15 minutes.

Rib eye and Swiss Chard recipes adapted from by Rachael Ray.
Pasta recipe adapted from Everyday Food 's Great Food Fast, by Martha Stewart.


  1. Wow! I am so hungry now! I am such a ribeye girl! Your meal looks wonderful. Thanks for sharing and linking to Tempt My Tummy Tuesday.

  2. Hi Kate,
    My man will just love this meal and so will I, it looks delicious! Hope you are having a great week and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

  3. This all looks absoultely amazing. i love seeing recipes for cooking meat on the stove top because we dont have a grill. I will totally pin this and make it soon, thank! Found you through Miz helens, blessings!

  4. Stopping by from Saturday Link and Greet. This looks yummy. I can't wait to try it!

  5. I'm not a big meat eater, but the sauce you made sold me on this meal. Looks amazing. Thank you for sharing it on foodie friday.

  6. Great meal! The steak looks amazing! We are so glad that you linked up to our "Strut Your Stuff Saturday". Please come back again really soon! Thanks! -The Sisters

  7. I'd like to invite you to join me at the Clever Chicks Blog Hop this week!

    I hope to see you there!
    Kathy Shea Mormino
    The Chicken Chick