Man the Kitchen Recipes | Dutch Baby Pancakes and Cowboy Steaks

Steve Katz, an astute observer of people, food, and culture, is writing a book called Man the Kitchen.

Diner DNA Puffy Creamy French Toast
(Serves 2)
2 extra-large eggs
¼ cup heavy cream
¼ tsp. vanilla
1/ 8 tsp. sea salt
Pinch of sugar
4 slices Italian sandwich bread
1 Tbsp. butter
Powdered sugar
Syrup or jam

2 extra-large eggs
¼ cup heavy cream
¼ tsp. vanilla
1/ 8 tsp. sea salt
Pinch of sugar
4 slices Italian sandwich bread
1 Tbsp. butter
Powdered sugar
Syrup or jam

Beat eggs until foamy, then add cream, vanilla, and salt, and beat again. Add bread slices quickly to soak up the liquid (there will be just enough to fully moisten them).

Preheat an electric griddle to 350° F, or heat a stovetop griddle or pan to medium high.

Melt butter, being careful not to burn it. Add the egg-soaked bread, sprinkle lightly with cinnamon and a pinch of sugar, and raise heat slightly. Cook for 3 minutes on the first side, then flip and cook for another 2 ½  to 3 minutes until brown and puffy.

Sprinkle with powdered sugar, and serve with maple syrup or jam.

Dutch Baby Pancake

3 extra-large eggs, room temperature
1 Tbsp. heavy cream
7 Tbsp. skim milk
½ cup sifted bread flour
¼ teaspoon salt
Pinch of nutmeg
2 Tbsp. clarified butter or unsalted butter
2 Tbsp. powdered sugar

Freshly squeezed lemon juice
Powdered or confectioners sugar

Pan Size and Batter Instructions:
Prepare full recipe of batter and use the following amounts for your skillet size:
8" – ½ cup batter
9"  – 2/ 3 cup batter
10" – 3/ 4 cup batter
12"  – 1 cup batter

Preheat oven to 450° F. Place oven rack in the middle of the oven.

Sift flour, salt, and nutmeg into a large, deep mixing bowl. Whisk in milk and cream until dissolved.

Beat eggs separately. Add to batter and whisk thoroughly. Let dough rest at room temperature for 15 to 20 minutes.

Place skillet in hot oven for ten minutes.

Using a potholder, remove the hot skillet from the oven. Add the butter; tilting the pan to melt the butter and coat the skillet.

Pour the prepared batter into the hot skillet, all at once, and immediately return the skillet to the oven.

Bake 15 minutes or until puffed and golden brown (until the pancake puffs up around the edges). In the larger pans it will also rise in center, but that’s okay.

Remove from oven and serve immediately. Sprinkle powdered sugar all over, squeeze lemon juice all over the pancake, then sprinkle more powdered sugar on top. Fill with your favorite sliced fruit or berries.

Black Olive, Mushroom, and  Garlic-Topped Crostini

1 lb. white or cremini mushrooms
1 tsp. finely chopped garlic
3 Tbsp. olive oil
2 cups pitted black olives
¼ cup parsley
½ stick butter
Sprinkle of red pepper flakes
¼ cup cream
Salt to taste

Rinse and clean mushrooms, then cut  into thick slices.

Sauté garlic in frying pan with olive oil at low heat to flavor the oil, just for a few minutes, being careful not to brown the garlic.

Add mushrooms and sauté on medium heat for 5 minutes.

Transfer mushroom mixture, olives, and parsley to food processor with metal blade, and pulse just enough until mixture looks crumbly, like a tapenade.

Melt butter in frying pan, add mushroom mixture and pepper flakes, and cook for 5 minutes. Turn heat off. Add cream. Salt to taste. Set aside and cover pan.

For crostini, spread mushroom-olive mixture on top of toasted bread brushed lightly with olive oil.

Cowboy Steaks in a Skillet

(Serves two hungry cowboys or four townsfolk!)

4 1" thick New York strip steaks  
1 large Spanish onion, sliced into
   medium thick rings
1 large green pepper, cut into ½ " slices
3 Tbsp. olive oil
1 Tbsp. butter
1 Tbsp. kosher salt
1 Tbsp. mild red chili powder
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro or parsley
Thick-cut Texas Toast, cut in triangles


Place cast iron skillet on low to medium heat. Melt butter in pan, then add olive oil and salt. Add onions to pan. Coat with oil. Add chili powder and cilantro and mix well.

Turn heat to medium high. Add one tablespoon water, cover pan, and cook for five minutes.

Remove cover and mix onions with spatula, continuing to cook until translucent and golden.

Push onions to side of pan. Add green peppers and brown. Mix onions and green peppers together and move to side of pan.

Turning heat up to high, Place steaks into pan and sear quickly for about 1 minute on each side to brown. Use tongs to check. 

Remove pan from heat, place onions and peppers on top of the steaks, and cover pan. Let sit on cool stovetop burner for 10 minutes for medium, longer for well. Steaks will be ready and a rich sauce will be waiting in the pan.

Serving Suggestion:

Serve steaks on oval platter with a bed of onions and green pepper alongside and sauce spooned over steaks. Serve with Texas Toast Triangles for mopping up the sauce.  

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