With the obvious exception of vegans and vegetarians, most everyone likes steak. The classic charcoal grilling scenario can be terribly hot in the summertime, though, especially down here south of the Mason-Dixon Line. The beauty of the problem with the heat here is that most of us also have cast iron skillets, which are a ready-made solution. Because a cast iron skillet, together with a simple technique, can produce a great steak in a few minutes. And all that without requiring you to go outside and build a fire.
This will work for any steak, but New York strip and tenderloin fillet are especially good candidates. Make sure your cast iron pan is large enough to hold all the steaks you’re cooking flat across the bottom of the skillet. (A high-sided skillet or dutch oven is best; these will splatter.) I should also mention that this technique works best with steaks that are at least an inch and a half thick.
About an hour before cooking, liberally salt both sides of the steak with kosher salt and black pepper. The hour will allow the salt to draw moisture out of the steak, which is then reabsorbed and seasons the meat thoroughly. Don’t skip this step.
Preheat the oven to 350°. Put about two tablespoons of olive oil and two tablespoons of butter in the skillet and place it over high heat on your hottest burner. When the butter is melted and sizzling, place the steaks in the pan, pressing down slightly to be sure they make contact with the bottom of the pan. Sear them for about two and a half minutes. Flip them with tongs or a spatula, press down slightly, and sear the other side for another two and a half minutes.
Then immediately turn off the burner and place the cast iron skillet containing the steaks into the preheated oven. Cook, turning if you like, until you reach an internal temperature of 125° for rare or 130° for medium. Remove the pan from the oven and plate the steaks, allowing them to rest for at least five minutes, loosely covered with aluminum foil, before serving.