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Pan-Seared Steak with Smoky Miso Butter and Watercress Salad

4 to 6 Servings

30 minutes

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In this recipe, big bold flavor is introduced only after cooking—we dot the just-cooked steaks with a compound butter made by mashing softened butter with miso, dry mustard and smoked paprika. As the meat rests, the juices mingle with the melting butter, creating a luscious, umami-rich sauce. Rather than serve the steaks as large hunks of meat, we slice and serve them on a salad of peppery watercress tossed with sesame seeds, soy sauce and rice vinegar. Note that the recipe calls for seasoned rice vinegar. If you have only regular rice vinegar, in the butter mixture, use an equal amount along with a pinch of white sugar; in the dressing, use 3½ tablespoons vinegar and ½ teaspoon white sugar, then season to taste with salt.

4 to 6



Don’t forget to reduce the heat to medium after adding the steaks to the skillet. This gentler heat ensures the steaks cook more evenly, so the edges aren’t overdone by the time the centers are at the right degree of doneness. Also, don’t shortcut the steaks’ resting time. As they rest, the meat finishes cooking with residual heat and the juices will redistribute throughout the muscle fibers instead of flow out onto the cutting board during carving.

30 minutes


  • 2

    tablespoons salted butter, room temperature

  • 1

    tablespoon white or red miso


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Brian K.

I love the addition of miso to your compound butter. I regularly use miso as a steak seasoning instead of traditional salt and pepper. Not only does it add salt but creates that steak house aging process since miso is a fermented soy bean paste. Prior to cooking, wipe off the miso paste with a paper towel after refrigerating steak uncovered overnight. The miso paste will burn and over flavor the steak.