HOW TO COOK THE PERFECT STEAK
Choosing the right cut
- There are different cuts for different purposes. In order of quality, select
- For tenderness - Eye fillet, Scotch fillet, Porterhouse, T-bone, Rump
- For flavour - Rump or porterhouse
- Te Mania's favourite cut for barbequed steak - Scotch Fillet (also known as Cubed Roll)
- Look for meat with fine texture (grain), which is not too dark in colour. Also look for fine marbling, which will add to flavour and tenderness.
- Cuts such as Porterhouse, have a membrane between the fat and meat. This membrane should be fine and opaque in colour, not silver. Silver membranes indicate toughness.
- Always buy, or carve steak of even thickness, ideally about 25mm.
- Allow 300g per serve (Scotch Fillet) to 200g per serve (Porterhouse)
Allow the steak to come to room temperature.
Pre-heat the barbeque or heavy based frying pan to hot.† Lightly oil the†steak, lightly.
Rare: Cook for a few minutes on one side, until a "sheen" of juice appears over the steak.† Then turn once, only.† Don't "jiggle" it!† Cook until the steak feels "very soft" to push.† Internal temperature for rare steak is approx 35o C.
Medium Rare: Turn when the steak is beginning to sweat a clear juice.
Medium:† Cook on one side until red juice appears on the surface.† Turn once only and cook until moisture is visible again.† Steak should feel "springy".† Internal temperature approx 44oC.
Well Done: Cook as for medium, then reduce heat and continue to cook until steak feels "firm".† - Not an option for a true beef lover!
After cooking, rest meat in a warm place, or covered on the bench and stand for 3-5 minutes to allow the juices to distribute throughout the steak.† Be careful it does not continue to cook, or to stew in its juices.
- "Sealing" a steak prior to cooking creates a crust. This is suitable for oven roasting, but not for individual steaks, as it prevents an even distribution of the heat, and creates a "tough" surface.
- Try not to cut into the steak to test cooking, as this allows juices to escape, which reduces tenderness.
- Freezing steak significantly reduces the quality of the meat.