The question of what to serve with steak can be a sticking point. If you don't want to go to the effort of making a proper sauce with stocks and reduction and all that, this flavoured oil is a delicious and easy accompaniment.
• 1 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus a little extra for cooking
• 2 anchovies, finely chopped (optional)
• finely grated rind of ½ a lemon
• 1 eschallot, minced
• 3 cloves garlic, minced
• ½ tsp salt, plus extra to season
• ½ tsp dried oregano
• ¼ tsp dried thyme
• ¼ tsp ground turmeric
• ½ tsp smoked paprika
• ¼ tsp ground black pepper
• ½ cup finely shredded parsley
• 4 x 300g rib eye or sirloin steaks
• baby cos lettuce leaves, to serve
• lemon wedges, to serve
Combine the oil, anchovies, lemon rind, eschallot, garlic, salt, oregano, thyme, turmeric, paprika, pepper and parsley in a jar and mix well. Allow to stand for at least 30 minutes, although it will taste better if refrigerated overnight and brought to room temperature before serving.
Season the steaks well with salt and pan-fry them in a little extra virgin olive oil until cooked to your liking. Remove the steaks from the pan and transfer to a warmed plate to rest. Top with a few spoons of the "home sauce" while resting, then serve with the lettuce, lemon wedges, any collected meat juices and some extra sauce.
The more often you flip a steak, the faster it will cook, but that also means it has less time to form a flavourful crust. If you want a more tender steak, flip it frequently, but if you want a more flavourful steak, flip it less often.
Cooking a good steak is about having a plan and sticking to it. First you need to find a good hunk of meat. If it's steak night, I'll ask my butcher to recommend something in my budget – usually two 300g steaks is fine for my family of four (we share them). Next is the cooking. A heavy pan that holds the heat and a good seasoning of salt are a must (I salt the steak just before it hits the pan). Flip it once, twice or 10 times, it doesn't really matter, as long as it gets cooked right with a dark brown crust. Then rest it on a warm plate out of any breeze for about half the time it took to cook it. It's that simple, really.