Prep: 30 mins
Cook: 60 mins
T = Tablespoon
t = teaspoon
2 lbs large russet potatoes; cut into 1/4”-1/2” sticks. Keep cut fries submerged in a bowl of cold water until ready to boil.
2 T distilled white vinegar
2 qts frying oil; tallow is the absolute best, peanut is second best.
1 T fresh cracked black pepper
1-2 lbs BRD Hanger Steak; trimmed
2 T high temp cooking oil; avocado, grapeseed, vegetable, tallow
Coarse Sea Salt
Cast Iron Skillet
5 qt dutch oven or other large, heavy pot.
Wire mesh spider, large slotted spoon or tongs; in order of effectiveness
1 small bowl
1 large bowl
Rimmed Baking Sheet
Wire Rack; optional
- Prep your potatoes by washing them thoroughly and then cutting into 1/4’”- 1/2” sticks — French fry sized. Keep submerged in cold water to stop oxidization.
- Place in dutch oven with the vinegar and cover with water. Bring to a boil.
- Boil for 10 mins.
- Drain and spread evenly on a paper towel lined baking sheet. Allow to dry while oil heats.
- Rinse out the dutch oven and return to heat, allowing any residual water to burn off.
- Add 2 qts oil and preheat to 400℉. It’s important to have a frying thermometer, guessing can lead to soggy, oil soaked fries and it will ruin your night. For hours. And into the next day. Promise. Don’t ask me how I know.
- Remove steak from fridge and separate the whole hanger into the two hanger steaks. Find the large vein of sinew (connective tissue) that runs through the middle and cut along each side. You will lose lean meat but don't worry about it, it's more important to get the connective tissue out. Save the removed sinew and reserve for meat stock.
- Keep the most uniform steak for this recipe (or use both to feed more people) and use the wonky one for another purpose — store in fridge and use in a week or cook, wrap tightly and return to freezer for 1 month.
- Allow steak to come to room temperature.
- Preheat cast iron on medium-low heat.
- Place cracked black pepper in cast iron while it preheats. Stir to toast until you can smell it, 2-3 mins. It will be peppery, floral and beautiful. Remove to a small bowl and set aside.
- In your preheated, 400℉ oil, place 1/3 of the boiled, dried fries into the oil and cook for 50 seconds. After you add the fries, the temperature will drop to somewhere around 360℉. Adjust the heat to keep it around this point, not 400℉.
- Remove to paper towel lined baking sheet and repeat with the rest of the fries, in two more batches. Let the oil come back up to 400℉ before each batch.
- Allow to cool for at least 30 mins or store in the freezer overnight (the secret to fast food french fries).
- In your preheated cast iron, add the high temp oil and allow to just begin to smoke.
- Sprinkle salt all over your room temperature steak. Add more or less to taste.
- Place steak in hot cast iron and apply even pressure across the whole steak, all at once with a weight if you can or in sections with your tongs. This creates a uniform crust.
- Sear for 1 min and flip, repeat with the pressure and sear for another minute.
- Repeat flipping after 1 min until you get the color that you desire. Check internal temperature with a meat thermometer to read 120-5℉ for rare, 130-5℉ medium-rare and 135-40℉ for medium. I do not suggest going over a medium cook. Remove at desired temperature.
- Sprinkle with reserved toasted pepper and set aside, partially covered to rest while fries cook.
- Return oil to 400℉ and add half the fries, cooking for 3 - 3 1/2 mins. Monitor heat to remain around 360℉ after adding fries.
- Remove to paper towel lined baking sheet and salt immediately. Repeat with second batch, allowing oil temperature to reach 400℉ first.
- First batch can be put in a 200℉ oven on a wire rack to keep crisp and warm.
- Slice hanger steak against the grain into 1/2” thick pieces and serve next to warm fries.
- Serve with favorite fry dipping sauces. The French like aioli, Yanks like ketchup, lunatics go without.