Steak in Cast Iron Skillet With Peppercorn Sauce

Steak in Cast Iron Skillet from House of Ingrams

Steak is one of the few things I can guarantee every person in my house will enjoy.  Here’s my favorite easy method you can do anytime, no grill required…

You will need a seasoned cast iron skillet large enough to hold the steak flat, a steak suitable for grilling; it should be thick, not thin– (T-bone, ribeye, New York Strip, etc), kosher salt, butter, heavy cream, beef broth, and fresh ground pepper.

Unwrap the steak and place on a platter.  Sprinkle lightly with kosher salt on each side.  Let it sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes, up to an hour.

When you are ready to start cooking, place the cast iron skillet on medium-high heat until it is screaming hot.  Turn on your vent fan.  You might want to open a window too.  😀  Carefully put your steak in the pan and sear for four minutes.  There will be smoke and sizzling.  If it’s smoking too much, turn down your heat some.  Flip and do another four minutes.  At this point, you must determine how done you want your steak.  Time depends on thickness and your skillet temperature.  An instant-read thermometer is super handy at this point…

120° F (48.8° C) = Rare

130° F (54.4° C) = Medium rare

140° F (60° C) = Medium

150° F (65.5° C) = Medium well

160° F (71.1° C) = Well done

For 1 inch thick T-bone as pictured, I flip it again and do about 1 to 2 more minutes on each side, then remove from the pan and cover with foil to rest for at least 10 minutes.  You should test the temperature to determine your stopping point.  I aim for medium rare to medium.  Well done steak makes us sad.

Cast Iron Steak

For the pan sauce, take the cast iron skillet and over medium heat add 1/2 cup of beef broth to deglaze the pan, add 2 tablespoons of butter,  a generous amount of fresh ground pepper (1/2 teaspoonful), and a quarter cup of heavy cream.  Increase heat to medium-high and simmer until the sauce coats the back of a spoon.  By now your rested steak will have left some liquid in the platter they are on…add that to your sauce and stir.

Peppercorn Pan Sauce for Steak

Serve!  When all four of us are home I use two cast iron skillets at the same time (two ribeyes or one T-bone will generally fit in one pan).

This is one of our favorite meals.  We usually have the steak with some bacon browned green beans or a salad.  Simple food is best!

Steak in Cast Iron Pan with Peppercorn Pan Sauce

No grill required for this yummy steak with pan sauce.  

Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Resting Time 10 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 1

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbone or other thick grilling steak
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup beef broth
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream

Instructions

  1. Unwrap steak and sprinkle each side with kosher salt.  Let sit at room temperature 30 minutes to one hour.  Heat seasoned cast iron skillet on medium high heat.  Turn on vent fan to prepare for smoke.  Place steak in pan and cook for four minutes.  Turn and cook another four minutes.  Test temperature with instant read thermometer.  If it is not done to your liking cook another 1 to 2 minutes per side.  Place on platter and cover with foil to rest at least 10 minutes. 

  1. For pan sauce, deglaze skillet with beef broth, then add butter, cream, and pepper. Stir and simmer over medium heat until sauce has thickened and coats the back of a spoon.  

 

Simple Bone Broth in Electric Roaster

Bone Broth made in an Electric Roaster

 

Bone Broth

Making bone broth isn’t a new thing, but here’s my latest version.  One of the problems I have had in the past is keeping the broth simmering but not boiling for several hours.  I have made broth in the slow cooker a few times and it works pretty well, but your volume is limited by the size of the cooker.

I picked up a shiny red electric roaster this past November after I found out I had three turkeys to cook for various events.  It worked great for the turkeys, and I got to thinking…this has precise temperature control and holds a LOT.  Why not see how some bone broth comes out?

Electric Roaster
Oster Electric Roaster

My bone broth is very simple.  I don’t add vegetables or anything but a little apple cider vinegar and some kosher salt. (Note, in the picture below there is a rack under the bones.  Mistakes were made…don’t use a rack.)

I put about 5 pounds of beef soup bones in the cooker and roasted at 400 for about an hour.  Mine went in frozen so I added a little time.  If yours aren’t frozen, adjust accordingly.  Browned is great, black not so much.

I turned down the heat to about 150.  I then added 2 gallons of cold water and 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar, and 2 teaspoons of kosher salt.  I let this sit for an hour to let the acid from the vinegar begin to pull minerals from the bones.  Then I turned it up to about 250 and covered.  I let it go for about 48 hours.  I will NOT add any more water.  If it is more than a bare simmer, I turn down the heat.  Generally, right around 200 or under is where I keep the temperature.  Check every so often to make sure things are going well.

Evaporation is not a bad thing here unless you start to boil dry.  Reducing the volume of fluid will concentrate the flavor of your final broth.  This time I went 48 hours and ended up with right around a gallon of broth.

After 24 to 48 hours, strain your broth using a fine sieve.  There will probably be a lot of fat on top.  If you place in a nonreactive container and cool in the fridge the fat will solidify on top and you can lift it off.  Discard or save to use for cooking, or make some nice cold weather bird food.  Don’t put it in freezer bags until it is completely cool; they always seem to leak when you put in warm or hot liquids.  I like to cool overnight in the fridge and then place in labeled quart freezer bags, then place on large baking sheets in the freezer to freeze flat.  They store better that way.

Gelled Bone Broth
Gelled Bone Broth

If things went well, your cooled broth will gel, just like Jello.  It is basically meat jello, because your long slow cooking process extracted the natural gelatin and collagen from the beef bones.  If it didn’t gel, don’t worry!  It’s still good bone broth and fantastic for soups or what have you.  You will need to add salt and pepper to taste (I like to add a generous amount of Lawry’s Seasoning).

Bone Broth

Simple Bone Broth

An easy way to make a lot of bone broth in an electric roaster.

Servings 16

Ingredients

  • 4 pounds grass fed beef bones
  • 2 gallons filtered cold water
  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp kosher salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat electric oven to 400 degrees.  Place bones in an electric roaster and cook for one hour or until browned.  Reduce temperature to 150 degrees.  Add water, vinegar, and salt.  Let sit for one hour.  Raise temperature to 250 degrees and cover.  Bring to boil and adjust heat to keep at a low simmer.  Cook for at least 6 and up to 48 hours.  The volume will reduce by quite a bit.  Watch to make sure it doesn't get too low.  Let cool a bit then remove bones and strain broth through a fine sieve.  Place in a non-reactive container and refrigerate until cooled.  Remove fat from the top.  Will keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or place in freezer bags or containers to freeze.  

  2. You will need to add salt and pepper to taste.  Lawry's seasoning is excellent.