Pan-Seared Strip Steak with Collard Greens and White-Cheddar Grits


Pan-Seared Strip Steak
Serves 4
1 tablespoon safflower oil, plus more if needed
4 boneless New York strip (shell) steaks (6 ounces each), 1/2-inch thick
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
1/4 pound cremini mushrooms, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
1/4 pound shiitake mushrooms, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
1 cup homemade or store-bought low-sodium chicken stock
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon chopped fresh herbs (such as parsley, thyme, or chives) for garnish (optional)

Heat oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Season both sides of each steak with salt and pepper.

Cook 2 steaks at a time for 1 1/2 minutes per side for medium-rare. (Do not flip steaks more than once.) Add more oil if needed. Transfer to a plate. Cover, and let rest at least 5 minutes.

Add mushrooms to drippings in skillet, and cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 4 minutes. Add stock and juices from plate to skillet.

Bring to a boil, scraping up brown bits. Stir in mustard, and simmer until sauce lightly coats the back of a spoon, about 3 minutes.

Pour sauce over steaks.

* Tara Notes:
At the time I made this meal, I found that I did not have all the ingredients handy so I substituted, sirloin strips, button mushrooms, 1 tsp powdered mustard. I opted to not use the fresh herbs although next time I will try it.


Collard Greens
Serves 4
1 ounce (2 tablespoons) unsalted butter
1 garlic clove, smashed
2 small bunches collard greens (about 1 1/2 pounds), stems removed, leaves cut crosswise into 1/2-inch strips
3/4 cup homemade or store-bought low-sodium chicken stock
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
Lemon wedges, for serving

Add greens, and cook, stirring often, until wilted, about 3 minutes.

Stir in stock, 3/4 teaspoon salt, 1/8 teaspoon pepper, and the zest, and cover.

Reduce heat to medium, and cook until tender, 8 to 10 minutes. Add lemon juice and remaining tablespoon of butter. Stir until butter melts.

Season with salt and pepper, and serve immediately with lemon wedges.

* Tara Notes:

At the end of its cooking time, I add in a tiny bit of vinegar for flavor.


White-Cheddar Grits
Serves 4
4 1/2 cups water, plus more if needed
1 cup white grits (not instant)
2 ounces sharp white-cheddar cheese, grated (3/4 cup)
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Bring water to a boil in a medium pot. Whisking constantly, slowly add grits to water and cook until mixture starts to thicken, about 1 minute.

Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer gently, stirring occasionally, until grits are smooth, thick, and fall easily from the spoon, about 25 minutes.
Add cheese, salt, and cayenne, and stir just until cheese melts.

Serve immediately, or cover and keep grits warm over low heat, stirring occasionally, for up to 1 hour.

* Tara Notes:
I added more cheese (4 oz total) and 1 tbsp of butter. Season per taste.


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