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We’ve been away this weekend visiting our friend John in Yarm for his 25th (but you’re so old!). As a birthday present I bought four ribeye steaks from a really lovely find, Perns butchers and deli in Helmsley.

Ribeye is my favourate steak, much tastier than fillet but less tough than rump can be when left rare. Since starting to eat meat I’ve progressed from incinerated steak to very rare which has really increased my enjoyment of it – part of my original problem with meat was the chewyness. And steak tartare is definitely on my to-eat list.

I was very nervous about cooking steak, I love eating it out but have never cooked it at home for fear of overcooking it. But on a very hot frying pan with the steaks lightly rubbed with oil it turned out ok (but smokey).

We served our birthday steaks with peppercorn sauce and amazing purple (!!) Halloween fried potatoes.

For the steaks

Heat a frying pan or griddle until very hot, rub the steaks with a little sunflower oil and season then place frimly onto the pan. Cook for 3 mins, then turn and cook for another 2. This gives a rare steak – but use the thumb trick to make sure the steak is cooked to your liking, it really works! Place to rest for 3 mins on a heated plate, covered in foil.

For the sauce

  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • Half a glass of white wine
  • A splash of brandy
  • Green peppercorns
  • 1 tbsp of creme fresh

Soften the onion in butter then add the brandy, wine and peppercorns. Simmer until it is reduced by about half then remove from the heat and stir in the creme fresh. Leave to let the peppercorns infuse then gently reheat when the steaks are resting.

Serve with fried purple potatoes and salad. HAPPY BIRTHDAY JOHN!

I think giving meaty birthday presents will be my new tradition – yum yum!