Friday, September 6, 2013

Steak and Potatoes with Kaya

 Practice makes perfect!

After a discouraging day of job searching, I was tasked with making dinner for myself and my younger brother. Initially, I was very discouraged to hear that my mother had purchased steak, considering the last time I made it, I managed to burn myself pretty badly, flooded the entire downstairs with smoke and charred the meat so badly that it was almost inedible.

But if anyone understands what it's like to make a mistake and try to redeem yourself for it anyway instead of just accepting people's scorn, it's Kaya, and that encouraged me to give it a try.

Now, obviously this isn't a historical meal. The Nimíipuu (or Nez Perce, as they were inaccurately named by French Canadian fur traders) of Kaya's time didn't have access to beef or potatoes, but the point of this blog is also supposed to be to document my culinary adventures and growth as a chef, not just discussing the history behind dishes.

That being said, had I wanted it to be more authentic, I could have tried to get my hands on venison, elk or bison. I'm just not sure where to go about looking for that sort of thing outside of knowing someone who hunts locally, or getting it mail ordered from somewhere. It's definitely something to investigate further for future recipes, and if anyone has advice, definitely let me know!

The potatoes are ridiculously simple. I'm not even sure what kind of potatoes we used, but here they are:

I pierced them thoroughly and stuck them in the oven at 400 degrees for about an hour. There's probably a more exact way of cooking these, but this worked out just fine.

Making steak should be pretty simple - my mistake last time I did it came from reading directions on the internet which told me I needed to put a lot of cooking oil in the pan. The oil overheated, burned the meat and started spitting and smoking pretty badly. This time, I greased a pan with some cooking spray, put rub on the steaks and once the pan was hot, put the steaks on and let them cook for five minutes on each side.

And voila! Very little fuss and mess this time, and no burns! It even tasted good, so I'm feeling a little better about my ability to feed myself. Finished off with a Caesar salad, this was a fast, tasty meal without much clean up required.

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