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How to make a good beef steak?

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
I have been trying to make beef steak for a few times, but I am really upset with the result. The steak was hard and not juicy like what we always had at the restaurant. Can anyone share with me the secret into making the best steak from beef?

Thank you:lips:
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post #2 of 14
Idaku,
Good quality beef, hot HOT smoking pan, beef at room temperature, oil and season the beef, not the pan. Sear it either side to get the good meat flavours, about a minute either side, then reduce heat till done to how you like it. Me, I like it really rare, blue, so the minute is usually enough

I'm sure others will chip in with advice probably better than mine :)

DC
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 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
Robert A. Heinlein

 
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post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thank you. One more question, how long should I marinate the beef before cooking?
post #4 of 14
idaku,
I generally don't marinate my beef, but if you do, you could marinate anywhere from 20 minutes (if you are in a hurry) to maybe 4 hours. Don't leave it too long if you are using any lime/lemon juice in the marinade, certainly not overnight. Hope this helps :)
 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
Robert A. Heinlein

 
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 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
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post #5 of 14
minimum of half an hour , and up to overnight what kind of marinade are you working with ,
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when life hands you lemons, make lemon gelee, lemon meringue pie, or any other dessert your heart desires

www.theunknownchef.com
www.theunknownchef.co.nz
www.shoebridge.co.nz
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post #6 of 14
Grease your steak (butter or evoo) sear, I usually use 1 inch rib eyes, I try to bbq all the time but when I pan sear I time them out at about 4+ minutes per side. Then remove from heat and cover and let it rest, this is really important the juices will settle back into the meat let sit for 10 minutes. Oh ya salt pepper on the turn.

Cheers fstfrdy:smoking:
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post #7 of 14
As has been said here, I let the steak come almost to room temperature. I salt and pepper it on both sides. To cook it I use a stainless steel pan (All-Clad, it so happens, and NOT non-stick). I heat the pan on medium high heat, swab a little olive or vegetable oil lightly in the bottom. When I see little wisps of smoke from the oil, I lay the steak in the pan and LEAVE IT ALONE. Once it's formed a nice, brown crust (about 4-5 minutes), I turn it over and put the pan in the oven at about 425 degrees for another 5 minutes. I put the finished steak on a plate, cover lightly with aluminum foil, and let it rest 10 minutes.

The literature with my All-Clad pan said not to heat it on high heat, so I don't crank the heat up all the way. Also, the fond (tasty brown stuff in the bottom of the pan) doesn't burn, so I can use it to make a pan sauce if I want.

By the way, I wouldn't do this with a steak any thinner than 1-1/2 inches.
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post #8 of 14
Mezz you are so right thicker is better and I really think that the "rest" period is the most important part to getting it right.
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post #9 of 14

Meat knows only one thing, that is temperature. 

 

Get a good instant read digital thermometer, and read up on "resting" and "carry over heat".

 

Good temperature control is the key in making good steak.

 

Don't be confused by "high heat first, low heat later" v.s. "Low heat first, high heat later", both work fine.

 

After you are able to make good steak, then worry about recipes, seasonings, etc. to make great steak.

 

 

dcarch

post #10 of 14

You can use a thermometer, but it's not necessary.  Maybe most of you are not old enough to remember when there were no instant-read thermomenters, and yet good steaks were cooked then.   With practice you can press the meat and tell from how it feels.  I do that now, and before i got the hang of it, i cooked till it felt a little less than completely soft, and then made a small slit with a thin knife.  If it looked too red, i cooked some more.  Yeah, it requires you to make a hole in the meat.  So does inserting a thermometer.  But once you can identify the right redness and connect it to the right feel to the touch, you're set!  and have saved the money for the thermometer and can buy yourself another nice steak instead!

 

Feel the steak raw, then press it during cooking every minute or so.  If it feels hard to the touch, you can be sure it will be hard when you chew it, so make sure it still feels soft, and then try to identify the right feel associated with the best eating quality. 

"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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post #11 of 14

"----You can use a thermometer, but it's not necessary. ---and have saved the money for the thermometer and can buy yourself another nice steak instead!---------"

 

 

You are going to need a thermometer anyway, for chicken, turkey, pork ------. A good thermometer can cost about $100, or a workable one (digital probe) for $5.00.  Messing up a good steak can be $15.00, each time.

 

The touch test is great for very experienced chefs on TV shows. Highly unreliable for the general home cook who makes steak once a month. It also depends on what cut and how thick the steak is.

 

dcarch

post #12 of 14

I bought one, tried using it, was ALWAYS disappointed, and returned to the old way for roasts - thin sharp knife goes in a moment, then you test the temperature on your upper lip. 

For steak, which i could rarely afford for many years, i used to check with the knife and looking inside.  When i read about the touch test (on cheftalk actually) i tried it.  It took a little practice but it works fine.  I may have a steak once or twice a month (rarely because it's over 20 euro a kilo at the supermarket, and more for the good stuff i really like - the chianina) but i got enough experience by testing with my finger and checking it with the knife that i now can rely on my finger.  I did try for a brief time with the thermometer, but i had no luck.  I don't much like gadgets.  I like to see and touch things to understand them, and don;t like measuring. 

 

Anyway, how did people get good steaks before what was it, 1980 when instant reads became available?  for all those years, do you think people couldn;t cook meat at home without making it into leather? 

"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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post #13 of 14

"----Anyway, how did people get good steaks before what was it, 1980 when instant reads became available?  for all those years, do you think people couldn;t cook meat at home without making it into leather? "

 

 

Actually most people make steak without a thermometer, or use the touch method. They just cook, look, smell and time, and the steaks will come out great.

 

However, if someone asks "How do I make a good beef steak", IMHO, the advice is to get a thermometer and read about "resting" and "carry over heat".

 

The touch method would be a good alternative perhaps 20 steaks later.

 

 

dcarch

post #14 of 14

I see your point, dcarch - i was just thinking that with the culture of cooking shows and all that, there is a tendency for ordinary home cooks or people with little experience to think that they can't cook without all the fancy stuff.   I know it's probably frowned on and terribly taboo to cut into a steak (even a tiny cut) while it's cooking to check it out, but why the heck not?  I wouldn;t want a restaurant to do it, but at home?  Yeah, a little juice will run out, but also piercing with even a thin thermometer will also release some juice.  But i just think telling people they should get a thermometer is more likely to discourage people from trying until they have the thermometer.  And that means going to find the store that has it, etc.   And seeing the color of the meat you actually see if it's the way you like it to be in your dish.  Then you explain that it wll be a tiny bit more cooked even after removing from the heat because of residual heat.  Rest it, etc.  but it's something someone can do without any equipment they don;t already have at home. 

"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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