Celebrity Chefs Recipes: Traci Des Jardins's Ribeye Steak with Duck Fat Potatoes

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I love a great steak on a special occasion. Grilling over mesquite is definitely my preferred method of cooking,  but the sear in a heavy cast iron skillet is also great.

I have three tips for preparing your steak. First, pre-salting 2-3 hours ahead helps to tenderize the steak. Second, tempering (bringing the meat to room temperature) assists in a nice graduated temperature throughout the meat. Last but not least, is that allowing your steak to rest for 15 minutes or so after cooking is essential.

And this isn't a tip, but there are no better accompaniments than duck fat fried potatoes and a delicious salsa verde.

Grilled Ribeye Steak

Serves 8

Traci Des Jardins's grilled ribeye with duck fat potatoes and salsa verde.
Traci Des Jardins's grilled ribeye with duck fat potatoes and salsa verde. (Vic Chin)

Ingredients:

  • 16-ounce Ribeyes
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • ½ bunch thyme
  • Kosher salt and black pepper
  • Fleur de sel

Grill Method:

  1. Season the steaks well on both sides with the kosher salt and pepper.
  2. Place the butter, garlic and thyme together in a saucepan and cook over medium heat until the butter is infused with the thyme and garlic.
  3. Cook the steaks over a hot mesquite barbecue or in a sauté pan, basting frequently.

Cast Iron Method:

  1. Heat a cast iron pan over medium-high heat. Add a little oil to the pan and place the steaks in it (the pan should be hot enough to really brown the steaks, depending on the thickness).
  2. Cook for 3-4 minutes and then flip to sear the second side.
  3. Once the steaks are browned on both sides, turn the heat down to medium-low heat. Add the butter, garlic and thyme.
  4. With a spoon, baste the meat for a few minutes by continually spooning the hot butter over the meat.
  5. When the steaks have reached the desired doneness, place on a wire rack and allow to rest.

Duck Fat Fried Potatoes

Duck fat potatoes roasted in a skillet.
Duck fat potatoes roasted in a skillet. (Vic Chin)

Ingredients:

  • 3 pounds German Butterball or Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and quartered
  • kosher salt
  • ½ cup rendered duck fat
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • ½ bunch Italian parsley - picked, washed and chopped
  • Fleur de sel or Maldon
  • black pepper

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Place a large sauté pan over medium-high heat and add the duck fat, potatoes and a little Kosher salt.
  3. Turn down the heat slightly. Cook the potatoes until they begin to brown, about 5 to 7 minutes.
  4. Place the potatoes in the hot oven and cook for another 10-15 minutes or so (until the potatoes are golden brown and soft inside).
  5. Remove the potatoes from the oven, allow to sit for about 2 minutes to cool the pan slightly. Add the garlic and the parsley.
  6. Add Maldon/Fleur de sel and pepper to taste.

Salsa Verde

Use a mortar and pestle for the best flavors in this salsa verde.
Use a mortar and pestle for the best flavors in this salsa verde. (Vic Chin/Peter Ruocco)

Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
  •  3 tablespoons chervil, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons chives, finely minced
  • 3 tablespoons tarragon, finely chopped
  • 1 shallot, finely minced
  • 3 tablespoons capers, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons anchovy,  finely chopped
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

Instructions:

  1. Using a mortar and pestle, grind the anchovies and capers.
  2. Combine the rest of the ingredients. Add the oil first, followed by the herbs, and finish with the vinegar just before serving.
  3. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

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