Tips for a Tastier Steak
Think you know what makes a great tasting steak? Improve your cut this grilling season with these simple tips.
Several factors contribute to improving the tastiness of a steak. Discover how to dry-age, grill, and rest your steak the right way – and reap the tasty rewards.
Get the Age Right
If you eat a steak the day after a steer is dispatched, it’ll be tougher, dryer and blander than its aged counterpart. Give it time, and enzymes will break down the muscle fibres, making it tender, juicy and tasty.
But is more aging always better? Not necessarily. Most of the tenderizing happens in the first two weeks; after that, if the meat isn’t handled properly, the fat can begin to turn rancid and can pick up sour or cheesy notes.
Sear before Grilling
Raw steak doesn’t have much taste. That characteristic roasty, beefy flavour we so love comes from cooking-the browning, in particular, of a steak’s surface. That’s why many top steakhouse chefs pan-fry, as more metal comes into contact with the steak.
But grill aficionados needn’t worry: On the barbecue, sear the steaks in your favourite iron pan first, then move them to the grill to soak up that incredible smoky flavour.So don’t be afraid of the fat; in fact, for a perfect steak with very little marinating, you need a cut with a little fat. Personally, I’ve found the ribeye to be the perfect cut for a great, easy-to-prepare steak.
Don’t Let Your Steak Rest Cold
When you rest a steak that’s rare, heat penetrates to the centre and continues to gently cook it, reabsorbing savoury juices that were squeezed out during cooking. But by the time your steak is rested, it’s also cold.
So don’t rest your steak on a cold plate, even under a foil tent. For the last few minutes, move it to a cooler part of the grill or put your pan inside a warm oven for steak that’s both juicy.You just don’t want too much of it, so trim the extra fat after cooking if you’re trying to cut back. Also, instead of going for a leaner cut, you can always just eat a smaller portion of a better tasting one.