“I think we should grill today,” Eric said, looking outside at the robin’s egg sky with fluffy marshmallow clouds. I wasn’t sure I trusted that sky because over the past week it was filled with a beautiful sun that was deceptively cold then would shock us with massive bouts of hail if we dared step outside. But as I slid open the patio door, a mild wave of warmth washed over me. It was actually a nice day, the perfect day for steak!
I headed to our collection of beef from the 1/4 cow we bought last year, the white paper wrapped packages stacked on their own shelf in our standing freezer. “I can’t believe it!” I thought, “I have a freezer, I have a house to have room for a freezer! I have a house with shelves for my canning projects and a wall to hang pots and pans on!” The realization that the house I was standing in belonged to us was almost to exciting to bear, so I grabbed a porterhouse steak and rushed into the kitchen.
I wasn’t exactly sure what a porterhouse steak was, but I knew the beef we got from the farm we do our CSA with was amazing, and you can leave it as is or be as creative as you want and still get a delicious piece of meat. I also have my very first herb garden, so decided that it was time to utilize some of those green sprigs that give off tantalizing scents every morning.
Once the steak thawed (from several hours on the counter) I placed it in a Ziploc bag and poured in some olive oil, then added chopped garlic and bits of fresh rosemary. Eric asked if I knew how to grill a porterhouse so I quickly googled it, my answer to anything unknown. I found a great video with Elias Iglesias, executive chef of Morton’s The Steakhouse, demonstrating perfect grilling technique for a porterhouse.
I also learned all about the porterhouse steak which contains part of both the strip loin and tenderloin, so is supposed to be a very tender flavorful piece of beef. My mouth watered just thinking about it! After the steak got to fridge cold rather than frozen and was in its marinade, I let it sit at room temperature for two hours as Chef Iglesias suggested. I was rather nervous about basically having it on the counter all day, but decided I’ve eaten beef in Africa, Asia, and Mexico that’s sat out in a market in the sun all day, so this was actually much safer.
I left some butter out as well and as soon as it was soft mixed in garlic and chopped oregano. Compound Butters are fantastic for grilled meats because they don’t get to sit in pan juices as they would if cooked on the stove or in an oven.
Watching through the window as Eric set fire to the coals, I teared up a bit thinking that our first BBQ in our new home was one of many firsts. I wonder if it ever stops being special? Even in the midst of the madness of home ownership (like having your dishwasher, clothes dryer, and shower all need repair on the same day), I find some sort of wonder such as realizing I can paint anything I want or put up curtains of my choice, things I never experienced in an apartment.
Eric obediently grilled the steak for 5 minutes on each side, and we were nervous as we took it off because although it felt done to the touch, it wasn’t charred like the steak in the video. Apparently our little charcoal hibachi is not as hot as a large expensive gas grill, who knew? Unsure if we needed to grill it longer I waited a few minutes for the juices to absorb, then cut a piece to see that it was actually cooked to medium doneness (we usually do medium rare).
As I tasted the piece I’d cut I let a moan of pleasure escape my lips, this was beef in all its glory! The tender texture barely required chewing, and the buttery flavor had a richness to it that I rarely find in store bought meat. I began slicing pieces away from the bone and arranging them on our plates, but before I could dole out the potato salad, I noticed the large bone with bits of meat and glistening fat clinging to it.
My years of eating in an Asian culture came back to me and visions of Chinese aunties ran through my head as I began delightedly gnawing on that bone. Even the fat was amazing, full of flavor, easy to chew, not at all what the word fat usually brings to mind. “Eric! Gnaw on this bone with me!!!” I shoved it in his face, feeling guilty that I was getting the best flavor all to myself. He too began to gnaw on it, making delighted sighing noises with each bite.
We sat out in the backyard to eat, and though we’re usually quite the conversationalists, not a word was said until every last bite of steak was consumed. Then we both sighed in unison, laughed at ourselves, and contentedly grabbed hands as we carried our dirty dishes back to the house.
Rosemary Garlic Steak with Oregano Garlic Butter Recipeserves 2 with sides
1 large porterhouse steak
2 TBS olive oil
3 cloves chopped garlic
3 sprigs rosemary
3 TBS butter softened
2 cloves chopped garlic
10 leaves fresh oregano chopped
Place your steak in a Ziploc bag and add olive oil, 3 cloves of chopped garlic and rosemary. Seal the bag and mush it around. Let sit at room temperature for 2 hours.
Mix the butter with the 2 cloves of garlic and the oregano. Place the mix in a sheet of plastic wrap and shape into a log. Wrap tightly in the plastic and refrigerate.
Grill the steak for 5 minutes on each side. Remove to plate and cover with foil, let sit for 5 minutes so juices will absorb.
Slice the meat away from the bone and arrange on two plates. Slice some rounds of compound butter off of the logs and place on the steak slices.
Approximate cost/serving: Buying a porterhouse on it’s own can be ridiculous, anywhere from $13 to $50 a pound! But by getting it as part of a whole cow, it only cost us $5 to make this dinner, so $2.50 a serving. You’re not going to get a cheaper steak of that quality any other way!
Gluten Free: No substitutions needed.
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Nutritional and cost information is for estimating purposes only, and subject to variations due to region, seasonality, and product availability.