Oh, Baby: Steak + Potatoes
Growing up my parents shared every one of their household domestic responsibilities. That is, everything but the cooking. My mother was - and still is - the superior cook of the two. She cooked 95% of the time. But my Dad also has some specialties of his own that include spaghetti, meatloaf, burgers and fried catfish, that he would prepare on occasion.
Those roles are definitely reversed in my household. I do the majority of the cooking in my home, though my wife has become a great cook in her own right cook during the course of our relationship and has some specialties of her own. One of the questions we've always jokingly asked one another - and I've always kept in the back of my mind while preparing meals for the both of us- is, "How is having children going to affect what we eat?" With the reality of our baby on the way, that question is now far less theoretical and more realistic. I'm someone who very much so enjoys all things green in a million different forms in the food I make and I want to raise children who have palettes nothing like mine as a kid.
Thinking ahead, these are two meals I'd likely prepare one night for the wife and I, along with our newborn a few months after they're born. Steak for us and sweet potatoes for the kiddo.
SEARED RIBEYE with compound butter
When it comes to celebratory meals, steak is always and forever my go-to. When my birthday rolls around my wife doesn't even bother to ask what I want anymore. She knows. Take me anywhere whose reputation has everything to do with their steak and nothing to do with anything else. This is the case with the news of my becoming a father. I want and have had this steak in celebration!
Before you go thinking I'm giving you just another seared ribeye recipe, guess again. There are 2 factors in particular that make mine a game changer. First, I season my steaks with a little bit of curry powder. I can't explain it, but this tweak adds such an inexplicably complex depth of flavor. It also helps give the ribeye the crust you're looking for. The other factor is the roasted garlic in the compound butter. I roast mine low and slow for an hour until its like a paste. Trust me when I say you'll be able to taste the difference.
- ribeye steak
- garlic powder
- curry powder
- olive oil
- 1 stick of unsalted butter
- fresh thyme (chopped)
- fresh rosemary (chopped)
- smoked salt
- truffle salt
- black pepper (fresh cracked)
- roasted head of garlic
- shallots (finely minced)
- Preheat oven to 325.
- Cut off the top of the head of garlic (about 1/4). Place in a sheet of aluminum foil. Drizzle with olive oil and kosher salt. Wrap garlic in the foil and place on a baking sheet. Place in the oven and roast for one hour. Remove and let cool.
- Combine unsalted butter, 4 cloves of roasted garlic (mashed), 1 teaspoon of thyme, 1 teaspoon of rosemary, 1 teaspoon of minced shallots, 1/4 teaspoon of smoked salt, 1/4 teaspoon of truffle salt and 1/4 teaspoon of cracked pepper in a bowl, gently folding. Refrigerate.
- Turn cast iron skillet on high heat on stove top until it's screaming hot.
- Pat ribeye dry and season with kosher salt, garlic powder and curry powder.
- Drizzle skillet with olive oil and place ribeye on the pan.
- Allow it to cook and sear for 4 minutes and then flip. Add more butter, rosemary and thyme. While the other side is searing, baste the steak with a spoon for an additional 4-5 minutes. Remove from the pan and place on a wooden cutting board for 5 minutes to cool.
- Plate the steak with a pad of compound butter.
sweet potato baby mash
The first iteration of this recipe I ever made was for my nephew, Ezra, a few years ago. I found a couple of others and put my own spin on it as an experiment based on things I knew my other nieces and nephews really liked over the years. It was an immediate hit with him. So much so that when he finished his first serving, he got so angry at me I had to remind myself I hadn't stolen anything from him. Haha! Needless to say, I'll be feeding my forthcoming child this mash as well!
- 1 large sweet potato or yam
- 1/2 ripe banana
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh ginger
- 3/4 cups of breast milk
- Clean and peel sweet potato. Cut into 1" cubes.
- Boil potatoes in water for 10 minutes, drain and allow to cool.
- Place boiled sweet potatoes, banana, ginger and breast milk (for this recipe I used soy milk) in a high-speed blender (I used a Vitamix).
- Store in a sealed container.