If you're a lover of a good juicy steak, then look no further than Sammy's top tips and tricks on how to buy, prep and cook this Aussie favourite to perfection.
The humble steak is probably the most common dinner option for Australians, but how many of us can actually nail cooking the perfect steak. You may have wondered how restaurants manage to cook the perfect juicy steak for their customers every time? Or maybe wondered which cut of steak is the best, and how long to cook it for? Well we’ve answered all your steak related questions and more about buying, prepping, cooking and serving the perfect steak.
Tips for Buying a Steak:
- Try to buy all your meat from the butcher, mainly so you can ask them lots of questions about where its come from, what its been fed, and even get the to do some of the hard work for you, like deboning.
- Ask for grass or pasture fed beef for a deeper richer flavour, or grain fed for a buttery, fattier tasting steak
- Aged steak that has been aged less then 26 days can still be quiet tough, steak aged for 26-50 days will be nice an tender. The meat has had time to relax and the flavours have intensified.
- Aged steak should be a dark colour, not fresh, wet and red looking
- When pressed with a finger the indent should not bounce back, this is a sign that the steak is aged and tender
- The meat should look fairly dry, with no moisture escaping
- A good butcher will sell aged meat and it will cost slightly more as a third of the weight is lost when aging the meat. But you also don’t need to eat as mush as the taste is richer and deeper in an aged piece of meat.
- Buy a thick cut steak so that you can easily control the cooking.
- Look for some fat marbling. Fat is flavor and moisture to your steak.
- Favourite cuts of steak include: Porterhouse or sirloin, rib eye, fillet, t-bone, and scotch fillet. All have their own qualities and as long as you stick to the above points when buying your steak, it wont really matter what cut you buy, they’ll all be delicious.
- Remove steak from fridge at least 1 hour before cooking to reach room temperature. This will aid in cooking your steak evenly, rather than over cooking the outside before the core is cooked.
- Just before cooking, drizzle over some extra light olive oil onto steak and sprinkle with salt. You do this just before cooking as you don’t want the salt to draw out too much moisture, but you want enough to aid in getting a nice caramelised crust, intensifying the flavour
Cooking the perfect steak:
- First heat your pan, grill or BBQ to a high heat. You want to see it smoking!
- When smoking, place prepped steak down and seal on both sides for 30 seconds. If you have a thick cut steak you can seal all the sides.
- Once the steak is sealed, turn the heat down to medium high and continue to cook the steak turning it every 15-20 seconds. This will allow for even cooking through the entire steak, and will keep all those juices locked in.
- As you cook your steak, poke and feel the texture changing and firming as it cooks from rare, to medium rare, cook until desired doneness is achieved.
- If you’d like a full proof technique to cooking your steak use a digital probe thermometer to determine the doneness of your steak. 45d for rare, 55d for medium 65d for well done. Remember that when you finish cooking your steak the residual heat will continue to raise your steaks core temperature by another 5d after cooking, so make sure you take this into account.
- Once your steak is almost finished you can choose to add some aromas to finish it off, a popular choice is a little butter, thyme and garlic to baste the steak for the final minute of cooking.
- And finally time to rest your steak, remove it from hot pan and place on plate or chopping board. Allow resting for at least half the time of cooking.
- If you like pepper on your steak now is the time to add it. The warmth of the resting meat will gently infuse the oils from the pepper into your steak.
- Serve your steak whole or sliced on a diagonal. Note that if you are slicing your steak for service, only do so after a good amount of time resting so that you don’t fill the plate with blood juices running out, and also be aware that the steak will cool down a lot faster if you pre slice it rather than serving it whole.
- If your steak does cool down a little too much during resting, heat you pan back up to high and sear your steak on each side for 30 seconds.
Wrap up! Tips for cooking the perfect steak?
- Buy a good steak
- Allow to reach room temperature before cooking
- Oil and salt the steak not the pan
- Sear on high heat then reduce slightly
- Turn every 15-20 seconds until cooked to liking
- Rest for half the time of cooking
Voila! You are now a steak master. Congrats!
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