Reverse staging is the definitive way to cook thick steaks for a nice brown crust and a perfectly juicy interior. Slow-cook them in the oven to bring them up to temperature, then quickly sear the outsides by basting with hot butter, a French technique called "arroser."
Roast the steaks at low heat: Preheat oven to 275 degrees F. Season steaks generously with salt on all sides. Place steaks on a wire rack fitted over a rimmed baking sheet; this will ensure even airflow all around the steaks as they cook. Cook for 25–35 minutes, checking after 20 minutes, until internal temperature reaches 125 degrees F. (Note: Once the temperature reaches 80 degrees F, it will climb quickly.) For an accurate temperature, place the thermometer through the side into the center of the steak. When steak reaches 125 degrees F, let rest 10 minutes.
Sear the steaks: Heat skillet over high heat. Add the oil and heat until smoking; then add the steaks. Cook for 1 minute, undisturbed. Flip steaks, drain off the fat, then cook another 1 minute, undisturbed. Meanwhile, gently smash the garlic cloves with the heel of your hand until you hear a crack, leaving the peels attached.Add 2 tablespoons of butter, garlic cloves, thyme, and rosemary to the skillet. Tilt the pan and continually baste the steaks with the hot butter as it browns and gets foamy. Take the pan off the heat as you baste if the butter is browning too quickly or the herbs and garlic are starting to burn. Add remaining tablespoon of butter; once the first side is well-browned, flip the steaks and continue basting—a French technique called arroser—until the butter is no longer foamy. (Once the steaks have been flipped, Chef Pandel continues basting with his pan entirely off the heat; you may need to do the same, depending on the variables of stove temperature, pan, and the steaks themselves.) When it's no longer foamy, the butter has done its job and the steaks should be well seared with a nice crust. Check the temperature of the steaks: for medium-rare, the internal temperature should be 125 degrees F–130 degrees F. Remove steaks to the rack to rest, about 10 minutes. Serve right away.
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