Secrets to Cooking the Perfect Steak

It took me a while to master but put a steak in me, I’m done. I found my own tried and true way to cook the perfect rare steak at home. There are a lot of methods that work but this one results in that “slow walk through a warm kitchen kinda rare” that restaurants often blaze over.

Fair warning, this method will make your house look and smell like a steak house (hint, lots of smoke) but is that a bad thing? Nothing a good kitchen vent or a Husband with a hair blow dryer and an open window can’t fix… just saying.

The Perfect Rare Steak at Home

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print


  • Salt & Pepper
  • Olive Oil
  • 2 Tbsp Butter
  • 3/4 Cup of Red Wine
  • 1 Spring Rosemary
  • 1 16oz Dry Aged Steak
  • 2 cups of Baby Arugula
  • 1 1/2 cups Tomatoes (cherry or baby heirloom)


  1. Start With The Best Meat: Start with a good dry aged steak. If you’re going for rare or medium rare, no amount of technique can save a bad cut of beef. Besides, these days, if you don’t get dry aged and you pick up a cut on sale from the big chain markets, your getting beef that’s wet-aged in shrink wrap.
  2. Salt and pepper your steak heavily
  3. Let it come to room temperature (out on your counter) 45 minutes to an hour

    Dry Aged Wonder
    Dry Aged Wonder
  4. Ready The Pan: Place a skillet under the broiler on high (500°) for 20 minutes. In other words screaming hot skillet needed, Cast Iron is preferred. We’re traveling so I’m using what’s on hand in the kitchen we’re in. One thing that’s non negotiable, make sure you’ve got your oven mitts handy. Grabbing a skillet on the stove is basic kitchen reflex but ouch!
  5. Prep Steak Resting & Plating Platters: Clean and dry Arugula, lay on large serving platter. Sprinkle with Salt & Pepper and a touch of Olive Oil if you like, also delicious left bare, I swear!
  6. Cut tomatoes in half and hold aside in a bowl
  7. Tear off and overlap several large sheets of aluminum foil on a cutting board
  8. Prep Remaining Ingredients, Clean Rosemary, Sip your Chefs Pour down to 3/4 Cup of Red Wine.
  9. Meat Meets Heat: Right about now, your steak should be sweating a little and here is where your heavy salt and pepper from earlier are no problem. Wipe down the moisture and in the process some of the salt and pepper off your steak
  10. Dry steaks keep the smoke from billowing but there is no doubt about it, you’re still going to smoke the place up. So. if you’ve got a good kitchen vent, turn it on to high. 
  11. Wet a paper towel with olive oil and dab your steak delivering just a thin coating
  12. Turn your stovetop burner on high
  13. Using your oven mitts, remove the skillet from broiler and place on the stovetop
  14. Carefully, lovingly place your steak on the dry pan’s searing hot center DO NOT MOVE IT for 3-4 minutes. It’s going to be tempting, but meat releases from a pan when it’s seared, so stand back and watch your smokey progress.

    Smoke Happens
    Smoke Happens
  15. Using a spatula (not tongues which risk piercing the steak, releasing tasty juices) flip your steak over for another 3-4 minutes. Now upend your steak and sear the sides for another 1-2 minutes each.

    Sear All Sides
    Sear All Sides
  16. Remove your steak and gently wrap it in your prepared aluminum foil to rest for at least 10 minutes.
  17. As the steak rests, turn down the heat and toss tomatoes into your skillet (2 minutes)
  18. With tomatoes in the pan, begin deglaze with red wine, scrapping up brown bits, add butter and rosemary and allow volume to reduce by half.
  19. Once the steak has rested, open the aluminum foil carefully and add any juices back to your pan sauce and stir to incorporate.

    Steak Post Resting, Ready to Cut
    Steak Post Resting, Ready to Cut
  20. The Plating This blog focuses on stretching your food budget and steaks although loved, are pretty rare in my house (pun intended). In order to stretch one steak into a meal for two adults, try slicing your rested steak thin and laying it on a bed of arugula. Then topping it with the pan bits and steak juices.
    Hmmm Steak
    Hmmm Steak

Insert Happy Man Here
Insert Happy Man Here

Lighter Sides: Zucchini CarpaccioScallops with Sweet Pea and Avocado, Grilled Caesar Salad, Smoked Salmon and Lemon Vinaigrette



5 Comments Add yours

  1. amber says:

    Any recommendations for deglazing with a sulfate free liquid (not wine)?


    1. Hi Sis, you will be the best judge of what is safe for you, check your food lists well. Homemade chicken broth seems to be ok for you, so it could work just fine here. You could also go the brown sauce route and try a little heavy cream. To be honest though, if you start with good meat you can skip this and any risk altogether. Worst case a little butter and Rosemary alone about 1 minute before you pull your steak from the pan will give you the equivalent effect of what steakhouses do… Which is lots of butter at the the end.


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