As part of my annual ‘clean out the freezer’ ritual, I thawed a leftover piece of a prime NY strip from either Costco or The Fresh Market. My intention was to cook it for New Year’s Eve, but we ended up going to a neighbor’s house for an incredible meal (still remember the squash risotto) and even better wine.
New Year’s Eve was Friday night, so by Wednesday I knew I needed to cook the meat. It was raining an icy drizzle when I got home, so grilling was ruled out. I cut the loin into 3 steaks, about 1 1/2 inches thick, seasoned with kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper, and seared them in a ripping hot cast iron skillet before finishing in the oven. I served the steaks with sauteed garlic spinach and boiled potatoes finished with butter, chives, and parsley.
The meal served as a compelling illustration of just how good prime beef can be. Despite the fact that they had been frozen under less than optimal conditions, then thawed and parked in a constantly opened fridge for almost a week, those steaks shined. They were unctuous and delicious, and far better than any fresh choice steak I might have picked up on the way home. Something to remember.