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LUDO BITES AMERICA: Dry-aged Ribeye with Pear Potato Gratin

Watch LUDO BITES AMERICA Tuesdays at 9P

Introducing guest blogger Justin, who, along with his wife, Lori, writes the food blog The Gastronomic Duo, a blog dedicated to couples cooking together in the kitchen and enjoying food with one another in their home.

It was over a steaming French-pressed cup of coffee that I first read the joyous news that Sundance wanted our little blog to write about a recipe to coincide with their new show, Ludo Bites America. Ludo seems like a man after my own heart. I love the pop-up restaurant trend, his food style speaks to me and I, too, freak out and occasionally break shit in the kitchen.

The recipe we tackled was Dry-aged Ribeye with Potato Pear Gratin. It’s fortuitous that we got to play with ribeye, one of our favorite cuts of meat. I ran down to my favorite South Minneapolis butcher shop to grab what I knew would be a serious specimen of bone-in ribeye to share with my lady. The recipe called for two 14 oz. ribeyes, but since steaks are an occasion in our home I’d rather get one big ribeye to share and make it special. Meet our 35 oz. steak for two. Oh yeah… it’s like that.

This totally grass-fed, locally farmed chunk of protein seemed to smile with delight at the prospect of being caramelized, roasted and basted for the enjoyment of two hungry love birds. My favorite cast iron awaits.

INGREDIENTS

2 – 14 oz Ribeye steaks

¼ cup Grape seed Oil
3 tablespoons of crushed black pepper

4 tablespoons of kosher salt

2 crushed garlic cloves

2 branches of thyme – chopped course

2 branches of rosemary – chopped course

2 shallots – sliced finely

3 tablespoons unsalted butter

Potato Gratin

4 large russet potatoes

4 anjou pears

2 cups heavy cream

4 minced garlic cloves

2 branches of fresh thyme

4 tablespoon grated parmesan

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

Salt
Pepper

We followed the recipe for the most part, but it seemed like a lot of gratin to us so we quartered the recipe and shared one small gratin, which turned out to be enough considering the size of our steak. The gratin was quick and easy to make with the help of my mandolin. After baking in all that cream and butter, it became more like a sweet cream sauce – a hefty spoonful is the perfect accompaniment to the well-seasoned steak. The fruitiness of the pears made it surprisingly light, but it still held its own as a savory dish due to the garlic, cream and thyme. Try adding horseradish  – it’s a nice touch.

A couple of notes if you’re going to do a big steak as opposed to smaller ones -  include some roasting time in the oven before basting to help cook the steak through. When working with a piece of meat like this it’s best to truss it to keep cooking as uniform as possible. You want to cook it to an internal temperature of 135º F and allow the steak to rest in a warm place for at least 5 minutes. The internal temperature should rise to about 140º F, which is on the right side of medium-rare.

The basting is really what makes this recipe so tasty – the slow and steady incorporation of butter, herbs and shallots onto the perfectly seared exterior of a fantastic piece of meat. If you’ve never basted your steak in butter and herbs, this is the time to start. Your steak will glisten with buttery goodness and your home will smell like a fine restaurant the whole day.

Enjoy.

From the Recipe:

Marinate steak in grape seed oil for about 10 minutes, turning steak to ensure all sides have been covered.  Heat cast iron sauté pan with 2 tablespoons of grape seed oil over medium heat for about 5 minutes.  Season both sides of steak with black pepper and kosher salt.   Place steak in hot cast iron pan.  Sear both sides for 4 minutes each, creating a nice brown crust.  Remove steak from pan and let rest on cool rack for about 5 minutes.  In the meantime, add the butter & melt butter to hot cast iron pan, add the garlic, rosemary, thyme and shallots.  Place steak back in pan and baste in pan for 5 minutes with butter sauce.  Served sliced.

Preheat the oven at 375 degrees.  Peel potatoes.  Thinly slice potatoes (about 1/8th inch thick).  Reserve in cold water bath. Peel pears and thinly slice (about 1/8 of inch thick). Reserve in cold water bath with a touch of fresh squeezed lemon juice.  In large saucepan put heavy cream, garlic, thyme and bring to boil slowly.

Grease inside of a medium casserole dish with butter.  Strain the potatoes and pear and place on paper towel to dry.  Cover bottom of casserole dish with a layer of potato, then layer with pear and alternate potato and pear layers until you are about a ½ inch from top of dish.

Remove thyme from cream mixture and pour hot cream over potato/pear layers.  Cover top with grated parmesan.  Cover top of dish with aluminum foil and bake approximately 40 minutes.  Remove aluminum foil and allow top to turn golden brown (about 5 minutes).  Set aside to cool

Hungry for more? Tune in for a cross-country road trip with celebrity Chef Ludo Lefebvre as he reinvents American cuisine. LUDO BITES AMERICA airs Tuesdays at 9p on Sundance Channel.

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