CAST IRON SKILLET STEAK
I don't know when cooking a steak became so complicated.
“When I was growing up -- and this is probably true for you, too -- we didn't need to have charcoal or wood chunks or lighter fluid or a hibachi or a Big Green Egg to cook a steak, much less a sous vide machine and a water circulator. You didn't have to own a backyard or blacken your hands or dispose of dusty ashes. All you needed was a big steel pan, some oil, salt, and a piece of good meat. Some of the best steaks I ever ate were cooked this way -- where the beefiest flavor and the deepest crust depended mainly on a good pan, a strong burner, and an honest piece of meat. I like to call this method Back to the Pan because it encourages people to not get too fussy about steak.”
— John Tesar
And that’s the recipe!
About Chef John Tesar
Never one to shy away from controversy or the limelight, renown Chef John Tesar’s life choices are just as daring and bold as his cuisine. The four-time James Beard “Best Southwest Chef” semifinalist and “Top Chef” contestant specializes in modern American cuisine prepared with authentic European techniques, served up to his legion of fans who flock to his Dallas-based steakhouse – Knife. Tesar’s no-nonsense personality and sharp culinary perspective have garnered high-profile acclaim throughout his 20+ year career including national nods from Esquire (named to “Best New Restaurants” for two consecutive years), Food & Wine, New York Magazine, The New York Times, appearances on “The Today Show,” “The Early Show” and winning the inaugural season of the Food Network’s “Extreme Chef.” Tesar opened Knife, located at the Highland Dallas hotel, to critical acclaim in May 2014. A reinvention of the steakhouse experience, the chef-driven restaurant features all-natural born and raised Texas beef, pork and lamb in dry-aged prime cuts and specialty cuts such as chuck flap, beef tongue and Akaushi beef. Named one of Eater National’s “Most Anticipated Openings,” Esquire magazine’s “Best New Restaurants,” Zagat’s “Hottest New Restaurants,” Maxim’s “America’s Best Steakhouse Specialties,” D Magazine’s “Best Steakhouse in Dallas” 2015 and 2016 and featured on Esquire Network’s “Restaurant Revolution,” Knife is Tesar’s revolutionary steakhouse vision realized.
STRAWBERRY COBBLER WITH BLACK PEPPER-CORNMEAL BISCUIT
Finally! Spring brings strawberry season, and we’d be lying if we said we haven’t been waiting all winter to pluck a few pieces of fruit from the garden and, eventually, bake the excess into turnovers, cobblers, and pies. This recipe from Milk Glass Pie’s Keia Mastrianni has all the charm of her Southern home in North Carolina, and best of all, captures that sweet, so-needed feeling of warmer days ahead.
CHICKEN AND DUMPLINGS
The shoulder season has us craving both spring chicken and lingering winter comforts, from slow-cooked foods to sweatpants. Nashville chef Sean Brock’s “last meal,” which he claims this dish would be, serves up both. The one-pot Southern classic features a recipe that has been in the Brock family for generations, made by both his mother and grandmother, and now featured on the menu at Audrey.
VIETNAMESE-STYLE WHOLE FISH
This is a complex recipe. But John Tesar doesn’t take shortcuts. His Texas restaurants pride themselves on prized pieces of protein, as showcased in this Vietnamese-inspired celebration of local seafood. Save it for next year’s Feast of the Seven Fishes—or consider it the courageous start of 2023.
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