I was recently invited out to Humboldt & Jackson to judge round 11 of an ongoing, late night steak battle cooking competition, pitting Chef Courtney Harris of Chef RLI (defending champ) against Harry Rosenblum of The Brooklyn Kitchen (challenger). Both bovine brawlers were given two-bone rib eye steaks that had been dry aged for 60 days after being raised out on Niman Ranch.
The chefs’ rules were simple: cook it and serve it however you want, to whatever temperature you want, to be judged blindly by 25 ravenous carnivores who lie in wait.
We cast our votes and the decision was made: steak B was the better of the two preparations. It turned out to be the nice, simple salt, pepper, garlic, thyme and rosemary preparation by Chef Courtney Harris that won the crowd over.
But that didn’t mean Harry Rosenblum’s steak was bad, by any means. In fact, I really liked the flavors he had going on. He took influence from Japanese preparations, where they use koji rice bacteria and fungus to mimic the dry aging process and flavors. It may sound nasty but it’s not. Check out my article here, where I mention koji toward the bottom. Anyway, he also used citrus like yuzu with miso and fermented bean pastes to make a dynamic sauce. I loved it, and, for me, the decision was tough between the two.
H&J is doing this for one more week before switching over to lamb battles. Be on the lookout for more!