Steak with lemon butter for Father's Day

Recipe from: 09 February 2011

Ingredients 8
Servings 2
Time 0 mins


  • 2
    well-matured rump or sirloin steaks
  • 30
    olive oil
  • salt and milled black pepper
  • For the flavoured butter:
  • 60
    softened butter
  • 12
    fresh rosemary needles
  • 7.5
    pink peppercorns
  • 7.5
    finely grated fresh lemon zest


20 mins
First make the butter. Put a few chips of ice on a small plate, and place it in the freezer. Finely chop or snip the rosemary needles and gently crush the peppercorns using a mortar and pestle, or a rolling pin. Don't pound them too hard, or they'll turn to a paste.

Stir the rosemary, crushed peppercorns and fresh lemon zest into the butter, and mix well. Season, to taste, with salt and black pepper. Take the plate with the ice out of the freezer and push the ice chips to one side. Place the heart-shaped cutter on the plate, and fill with the flavoured butter. Smooth the top and place back in the freezer for 10 minutes, or until firm.
Push the heart-shaped butter pat out of the mould and set to one side of the plate. Repeat the process to make a second heart-shaped butter piece. Reserve the remaining butter.
Heat the oil in a frying pan over a high heat. When the oil is very hot, and shimmering, add the steaks and cook on one side until nicely browned and caramelised (see my notes). Flip the steaks over. Add any remaining flavoured butter to the pan, and, using a spoon, baste the steaks every twenty seconds. When 
the steaks are done to your liking, remove them from the pan and place on a plate to rest for 4-5 minutes.

Slide the steaks onto plates and top each one with a pat of flavoured butter. Serve immediately with green salad and a baked potato.
Serves 2.

Chef's notes:
  • Don't marinate the steaks.
  • Season the steaks with salt and pepper immediately before you cook them.
  • Heat the oil until it's blisteringly hot, but not actually smoking
  • Lay the steaks in the fiercely heated oil and allow to cook for a minute and a half (depending on the thickness of the steak) without moving or prodding them. Turn them over with a pair of tongs when they're beautifully browned, and the add a knob of butter to the pan (see recipe, below). Cook for another minute and a half, basting frequently with the butter.
  • If you're not sure whether the steak is cooked, turn it over and sneakily cut a deep slit in its thickest part. If the middle of the steak is a lovely dark pink, and you're looking for medium-rare, remove the steak from the heat immediately (it will continue to cook as it rests). If it looks disturbingly bloody on the inside, give it a little longer.

Reprinted with permission of Scrumptious South Africa.
To visit Scrumptious South Africa’s blog, click here.


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