Steak and Frites – a match made in culinary heaven! This classic dish may seem simple at first glance, with just a few ingredients, but achieving the perfect balance of flavors and textures takes some careful consideration. Fear not, as we’re here to share with you some essential tips and tricks for creating crispy thin-sliced frites cooked to perfection in oil and served with a juicy steak. Follow along for an easy-to-follow recipe that’s sure to impress!
What is Steak Frites?
Thinly sliced and deep-fried to golden, crispy perfection, frites served alongside steak are a beloved dish in French cuisine. The beauty of the steak frites lies in its simplicity, making it a versatile and easy recipe to recreate in the comfort of your own home. To elevate your steak frites game, you can experiment with various types of sauces, extra seasonings, or whichever cut of steak is most readily available to you.
Which Potatoes are Best for Steak Frites in America?
Choosing the right potatoes is crucial for achieving the perfect frites. The best potato varieties to use are Russet and Idaho potatoes. You can also use Yukon gold potatoes. Look for potatoes with high starch content and low moisture – this will ensure a crispy exterior and a soft, fluffy interior that pairs perfectly with your steak. Trust us, the extra effort in selecting the right potatoes is well worth it.
The Tools You’ll Need
- Cast-iron pan
- Pot (you can alternatively use a deep fryer))
- Paper towels
- Cutting board
- Slotted spoon
- Peeler (optional)
The Ingredients You’ll Need
For the frites:
For the steak:
- kosher salt
- ground pepper
How to Make Steak Frites:
To ensure that both steak and frites are served hot at the same time, it’s recommended to streamline the cooking process by preparing all ingredients beforehand.
Step 1: Prepare the Steak
At least half an hour before cooking, pat the steak dry with paper towels, then season on all sides with salt and pepper. Let the steak rest for about half an hour. In the meantime, begin preparing the frites.
Step 2: Peel and Slice the Potatoes
For this recipe, we recommend using large baking potatoes. Peel and wash the potatoes in cold water, then slice them into ¼-inch thick pieces.
Step 3: Soak Potatoes in Water
To make the frites less sticky and dark, soak the potatoes in water for 15 minutes to remove excess starch. Now it’s time to get back to the steak.
Step 4: Preheat the Pan and Start Cooking the Steak
Heat a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat, then add the avocado oil. After a few minutes, place the steak in the hot pan and gently press it down to ensure a better contact with the surface. Flip the steak every 1-2 minutes. Cook the steak for approximately 3-4 minutes per side until the crust is dark on both sides. In the meantime, you can resume preparing the frites.
Step 5: Drain and Pat Dry the Potatoes
Drain the frites and pat dry with a paper towel.
Step 6: Heat the Oil to 350 °F
Pour oil into a pot or deep fryer and heat it to 350°F. If using a pot, use a thermometer to measure the temperature. In the meantime, go back to cooking the steak.
Note: If you don’t have a thermometer, you can still check if the oil is sufficient for cooking. Simply wait a few minutes and then partially immerse one fritter in the oil. If bubbles appear, the oil is ready for frying.
Step 7: Finish the Steak and Let it Rest
Reduce the heat to medium-low, and add butter, garlic, and rosemary to the pan. Once the butter begins to foam, use a spoon to baste the steak with the butter for 1-2 minutes per side until it reaches the desired temperature (for example, 129°F for medium-rare doneness). Finally, let the steak rest for 5-10 minutes before slicing it.
Important Note: Ensure the butter stays golden brown and doesn’t turn black. Additionally, use a meat thermometer to ensure the steak’s internal temperature.
Important Note 2: Remove the steak when it’s 5-10°F below the desired level of doneness. Keep in mind that the steak will continue to cook as it rests, causing the temperature to increase another 5-10 °F.
Step 8: Cook the Frites
Fry the sliced potatoes until they turn a beautiful golden color, which should take about 5 minutes. While frying, check them occasionally to ensure they reach the desired level of color and crispiness.
Note: Cooking time for the frites will depend on their thickness, the exact temperature of the oil, and your preference for crispiness and color.
Step 9: Place the Cooked Frites on a Paper Towel
Place the cooked frites onto a plate or in a bowl lined with paper towels to help absorb any excess oil.
Step 10: Season your Frites
Immediately after removing the frites from the pot or fryer, season them with salt. It is best to do this while the frites are still hot and moist from the fat so that the salt sticks better to them.
Step 11: Serve the Frites Along with the Steak
Transfer the steak and frites to a single plate or serving board.
Steak Frites FAQs
Why soak potatoes for frites?
Soaking the potatoes in water helps to remove excess starch and moisture, making the frites less sticky and dark.
Which oil is best for steak frites?
The best oils for frying frites are refined peanut oil or extra virgin olive oil, although you can also use vegetable or avocado oil.
What is the best cut of beef for steak frites?
As an easy recipe, steak frites work well with whatever cut of meat you enjoy. Restaurants typically serve ribeye or New York strip, but we also recommend skirt steak, flank steak, filet mignon, porterhouse steak, or hanger steak for Steak Frites.