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11 Steps to a Perfect Steak

Updated on September 2, 2012

Grilled Steak


The Perfect Steak in 11 Tips

  • The best steaks come from real meat cattle breeds. Ask your butcher when shopping for the breed. Beef steaks from Limousin, Angus and Hereford are very flavorful. But they should be hung at least three weeks, for the proteins of the muscle fibers are then broken down a little and the meat becomes nice and tender. You see this in a dark red to brownish red, but never bright red color of the flesh.
  • A steak should be at least two centimeters thick. Thinner steaks cook too quickly and thus be tough. For steak and rump steak (from the front part of the back) about 3 to 4 cm thickness is ideal; for filet/tenderloin steaks about 4 to 5 cm. You can plan a steak of about 200g per person.
  • Do not make the mistake of trying to hammer away at your steak. This will damage the surface, and the steak meat loses its juice. If you have pieces of different thicknesses, flattening with your hand also helps instead of using a tenderizer.
  • Make several small slices in the fat margin/edge before cooking, it helps reduce the amount of fat needed for frying and the meat is protected from drying out. You can then cut the fat off on the plate and discard if you do not wish to eat it.
  • Remove the steak about two hours before roasting/frying from the refrigerator and place it on a plate or cutting board. Now you can season the steak briefly before frying (about a minute). Sprinkle the steak evenly with salt and pepper. When choosing pepper, go for black pepper. For a special taste, pick Flor de Sal. The Flor de Sal is the best sea salt and is obtained as in the Algarve, Tavira / Portugal.
  • Press the spices lightly. You can season the steak before cooking without worries, because the meat juices absorb the condiment while frying and during the subsequent rest. Be careful with the seasoning, however since you do not want to overlap the taste of the meat.

Jamie Oliver's Perfect Steak

Things to Remember

  • A hot pan!

The frying pan and the cooking oil must be HOT. To do this, use about two tablespoons highly heatable oil preferably - grapeseed oil. Wait until the oil is just before the smoking point so you have enough heat for the meat to quickly close on the surface structure and remains juicy.
Take account of the heat distribution capacity, use at best a cast iron skillet. At low temperature the steak braises in the leaked meat juices and quickly becomes dry and tough. You want to fry your steaks not sauté!

  • The surface!

Your raw steak has no pores on the surface, but smooth cut meat fibers. If these fibers get in contact with the hot oil and the pan, then the so-called Maillard reaction takes place: the protein molecules combine with the fat and sugar molecules to form an aromatic crust, which seals the surface of the steak.

Take advantage of the large initial heat of the pan and turn the steak after about a minute. You should not stab into the flesh, otherwise the meat juice runs out. Use a pair of tongs instead of a fork. Now fry the steak further for 2 minutes on both sides.

  • The degree of cooking!

You can easily test the degree of cooking: Hold your thumb and index finger of your left hand together with little force. With the right index finger, press on the left finger knuckle approach between thumb and index finger you should feel a certain back pressure. Now press your index finger in the middle of the steak. If the meat has the same pressure as with your left hand, it is still almost raw inside. The steak can now be served as very rare or "bleu".

If the back pressure of the steak corresponds to the feeling when you close your left thumb with middle finger, then it is pink at the edges and red in the core. This steak has the rage degree of cooking or saignant.

The most popular degree of cooking is; medium or a point. This is the equivalent of the back pressure of your thumb and ring finger. The steak is essentially pink, brown and gray on the outside and the meat juice is pink. If the pressure from the middle of your steak corresponds to the back pressure of the thumb and little finger, it means a fully-cooked steak, with a continuous reddish-gray-ingate and a light gravy.

Some meat lovers place great value on how they like their steak, because they can not like the sight of blood. But this is a misconception: A steak can not be bloody, as the animal bleeds out completely after slaughter. The red color of meat juice comes from the protein myoglobin, which denatures at a temperature of about 71 degrees to metmyoglobin and gives the meat it's gray brown color.

PS: If you get distracted by phone calls or other "important" things, then in a few minutes you are only left with a tough, dry piece of meat in the pan. This degree of cooking, can then be referred to as burned.

  • Let the steak rest!

Depending on your taste, you have now found your degree of cooking your steak, fry for another minute or two. Then take it from the pan and wrap it tight in aluminum foil. Put in a preheated oven at 70 degrees C and leave it there for about 7 to 10 more minutes depending on the thickness. This rest gives the contracted fibers the ability to relax. Alternatively, put a lid on the pan, remove from the hot plate and let everything sit for about ten minutes.

This rest phase allows your steak rest to get butter soft. Although the meat loses a bit of juice while resting, you can pour this as sauce again over the meat before eating.

  • Cooling down!

Placing your steak on a plate now will rapidly cool it down and lose some of its special taste. You can avoid this by placing the steak on a preheated platter. This will reduce the cooling, but at the same time does not cook it further.

  • Side dishes!

I recommend those who are health-conscious a large, mixed salad with a mild dressing. But even simple boiled potatoes with herb cheese are a perfect complement to such a special treat of a perfect steak.


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