Recipe Blog #1: Pan-Seared Steak

Cooking is a big part of life. Here’s a recipe for any day of any week.

Oliver Hinson, Writer

Pan-Seared Steak with Onions and Potatoes

If you need to impress someone with a meal, I’d suggest trying this one. (Oliver Hinson)

For my inaugural recipe blog, I figured I would cover something near and dear to me. Steak and potatoes is a classic dish, and the feelings that it delivers to me are indescribable. A certain power comes from its taste, whether it’s the power to put a smile on someone’s face or the power to impress even the most esteemed critics.

It is the power of being in the kitchen. When I’m cooking, I feel like I’m in a zone, a place that cannot be penetrated by outside forces. My entire day is spent dealing with the modern world and its impossible demands, and the relentless pursuit of perfection that I put myself through rarely leaves time for recreation. One has to eat, however, and it’s those times of the day where I allow myself to have a little fun. Of course, the main goal is sustenance, but unlike every other species in the known universe, humans tend to go a little further when it comes to our choice of cuisine. We have the desire to give our food taste, and so we learn the ins and outs of every element of a recipe. In the same way that writing allows us to express our feelings, cooking allows us to break the cycle of monotony in even the most mundane human tasks. That is the power. That is the feeling that makes itself exclusive to human beings, yet open to anyone who would like to experience it. And yet, there are those who deny this opportunity. They might never know it, but they are passing up the opportunity of a lifetime, over and over again. Don’t make this mistake. Feel the passion, the adrenaline, the greatest experience that happens a million times a day. In the words of the fictional, yet influential Auguste Gusteau, “anyone can cook.”

Potatoes Ingredients (1 serving)

2 medium potatoes, sliced and quartered

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1 tsp Cajun seasoning

1 tsp paprika (or 2, if that’s your style)

1 tsp ground cumin

A pinch of sea salt

A pinch of ground peppercorn


  1. Preheat your oven to 450 degrees. Make sure it has fully preheated before you put the potatoes in the oven. In a large bowl, mix together all of the ingredients, tossing with your hands until properly combined.
  2. Place a layer of aluminum foil over a 13 x 18 sheet pan. Spray with cooking spray, and place your potatoes on the pan, spreading out well. None of your potato slices should be on top of each other.
  3. Once your oven has reached the correct temperature, place your potatoes on the bottom rack, as that will help the underside of the potatoes get crispy. Cook for 20 minutes, flipping your slices halfway through. Serve with your steak, which should be finishing right now, because you’re an expert with timing.
These take a while, so get them in the oven early. (Oliver Hinson
The more spice you add, the better. Just make sure you can handle it. (Oliver Hinson)

Steak Ingredients (1 serving)

1 New York strip steak, any weight

1 whole onion, sliced

2 tbsp butter

1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

1 tbsp Weber Gourmet Burger seasoning (trust me on this one)

2 tsp dried minced garlic seasoning or garlic powder

2 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp onion powder

A pinch of sea salt

A pinch of ground black peppercorn

A steak is nothing without seasoning. (Oliver Hinson)


  1. Pull steak out of refrigerator approximately 30 minutes prior to cooking. Let rest on cutting board, DO NOT SEASON. Salting the steak too early will pull moisture out onto the surface, and you will not get a proper sear.
  2. Now it’s time to get the onions started. Place 1 tbsp butter into a cast iron skillet and melt over medium heat. Place the onions in the skillet and gradually raise the heat as they continue to cook. Feel free to sprinkle some peppercorn. Once they start to get some color on them, your heat should be at its highest setting. This is where the fun begins.

    The onions take a while to cook, so be patient. (Oliver Hinson)
  3. Try not to let your onions burn; it takes a little while to season the steak. If you have a sous chef, tell him to keep an eye on the onions for now. Gather all of your seasonings, because you’re about to use them all. Use half of your burger seasoning, cumin, onion powder, minced garlic, salt and pepper on each side and make sure to rub them into your steak firmly. Next, take your olive oil and pour it onto a small plate or other dish. Take a brush and brush the oil evenly on each side of the steak, making sure to get every spot. This will ensure even coating, and it will make sure that your seasonings stick to the steak instead of the pan.
  4. Once you are absolutely sure that your skillet is as hot as it can possibly be, it’s time to put your steak in. Move your onions to the outside of the skillet, as you don’t want anything cluttering the center of the pan, where the heat will be the highest. Gently place the steak directly in the middle of the skillet. If you hear a frighteningly loud sizzle, it means that you’ve done a good job. This is why you use a cast iron skillet; it conducts heat much better than a nonstick pan, which is sure to give you a bland, gray cut of meat. Keep the steak on one side for about 2 minutes (for a medium rare job, keep it in longer if you want it more well done) and then flip over. Your steak should have a deep brown color to it, with charring in some spots. If not, it needs to cook longer. Once both sides are cooked to your satisfaction, turn off the heat and serve, along with the onion slices, which should be caramelized by this point, and the potatoes, which should be coming out of the oven relatively close to when you finish the steak, because, again, you’re a timing expert.

    The finished product. (Oliver Hinson)

I hope this dish satisfies all of your taste buds, as well as the place in your heart that desires a home-cooked meal. It certainly means a lot to me, and if even one person reading this decides that cooking a meal for themselves is a worthwhile endeavor, that would mean even more.