Perfect steak and chips

This simple classic takes skill to get exactly right. Si and Dave show you how, with precision-cooked meat.

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For the chips

For the steak

  • 4 x 275g/10oz sirloin or rib-eye steaks, at room temperature
  • splash groundnut oil, or similar flavourless oil
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • large knob of butter
  • watercress, to serve


  1. For the chips, heat the oil in a deep-fat fryer set to 160C. Alternatively, heat the oil in a deep-sided, heavy-based saucepan until a breadcrumb sizzles and turns golden-brown when dropped into it. (CAUTION: Hot oil can be dangerous. Do not leave unattended.)

  2. Rinse the chips under cold water in a colander for 1-2 minutes to remove excess starch. (You may need to do this in batches.)

  3. Transfer the chips to a large pan of salted water. Bring the water to the boil, then reduce the heat slightly and simmer the chips until just tender. Drain well and set aside to cool and dry further.

  4. When the chips have cooled and dried, carefully lower batches of them into the hot oil. Cook for 6-8 minutes, or until pale golden-brown. Remove the chips from the hot oil using a slotted spoon and transfer to a bowl.

  5. Increase the temperature of the oil to 190C.

  6. Carefully lower batches of the chips into the hot oil once more, frying for 2-3 minutes, or until dark golden-brown, before removing and setting aside to drain on kitchen paper. Keep warm.

  7. Meanwhile, for the steak, preheat the oven to 200C/180 Fan/Gas 6.

  8. Heat the oil in a heavy-based, ovenproof frying pan over a high heat until it is smoking hot. Season the steaks with salt.

  9. When the pan is hot, add the steaks and fry for 2-3 minutes on each side, or until the meat is dark golden-brown on both sides (you may need to do this in batches).

  10. Add the butter to the pan and transfer to the oven, Roast the meat for 8 minutes or until cooked to your liking.

  11. Remove the pan from the oven and baste the steaks with the melted butter. Remove the meat from the pan and set aside to rest for a minimum of 10 minutes.

  12. To serve, place the steaks on serving plates. Pile the chips alongside. Serve with a handful of fresh watercress.

Recipe Tips

Tip: Si King cooks his steaks slightly differently to Dave Myers. To do it Si’s way, preheat a griddle pan over the highest heat possible, until the pan is smoking hot. Rub the steak on both sides with a drizzle of groundnut oil, then season, to taste, with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Lay the steaks onto the hot griddle pan and fry without moving or turning for 3 minutes. Turn the steak and continue to fry on the other side for a further 3 minutes (for medium). Remove the steak from the pan and set aside to rest for at least 6 minutes.