Like a steakhouse from your own house

Published 1:17 pm Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Who doesn’t love cheese?

Very few things are more versatile.

Cheese can be simple or elegant.

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It can be cheap or expensive.

It can be stinky or relatively orderless.

Cheeses are a lot like wines. They pair well with other foods and certain types of wines and just like with everything else, there’s a wide variety that people do not generally like.

I like to sample cheeses. If I’ve never heard of it, I’ll try it. I don’t care how bad it smells.

Smell does not necessarily indicate taste.

Take blue cheese for example.

It’s very aromatic (that’s a nice way of saying it stinks) but I love it.

It’s great crumbled in salads and it’s very good paired with red meat.

I’ve found it makes a great butter spread for steaks, too.

The next time you want a good steak that looks and tastes like it came from a five-star steakhouse, give this recipe a try.

1/2 cup pecans, coarsely chopped

1 teaspoon unsalted butter (for pecans)

1/8 teaspoon fine salt

1/2 stick unsalted butter, softened (for the spread)

2 ounces blue cheese, crumbled

2 steaks, the cut of your choosing.

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

First things first. Toast your pecans. Preheat your oven to oven to 350. Spread pecans on a small pan and toast until fragrant and a shade darker, about 8 minutes. Remove pan from oven and toss pecans with butter until butter is melted and absorbed by the nuts. Now, sprinkle nuts with salt.

To make your blue cheese butter, simply stir together your softened butter and crumbled blue cheese. You want the texture to remain chunky.

To prepare your steaks, preheat a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat until hot, at least 2 minutes. Pat the steaks with a paper towel to remove any surface moisture and season with salt and pepper. Swirl the vegetable oil in the bottom of the hot pan until it is fully covered and sear the meat until it is good and brown, about 3 minutes per side.

I don’t recommend using a cut of meat thicker than three-quarters of an inch thick or the heat won’t cook the meat through. A nice sized New York Strip works really well.

Once you’ve seared both sides of your meat, you can top the steaks with some of the blue cheese butter and sprinkle with pecans.

The blue cheese really brings out the flavor of the beef and the texture of the smoky pecans with the creamy butter and tender meat is just fantastic.

Tiffany Cannon is a field editor for Taste of Home Magazine and owner of 2ate9 Bakery and Catering in Demopolis. She can be reached via email at