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How to Cook the Perfect Steak

The Clever Cookstr is joined by John Tesar, three-time James Beard finalist, Top Chef star, chef and restaurateur at Knife in Dallas and now, author of the cookbook Knife: Texas Steakhouse Meals at Home. His Back To The Pan method will completely revolutionize the way you cook steaks.

By
Kara Rota,
May 30, 2017
Episode #153

Jonesing for the perfect steak? John Tesar has your walk-through, with his Back to the Pan method replacing the grill for the tastiest, most perfectly-cooked steak of your dreams. 

1. CHOOSE YOUR MEAT.  When you find a good source of steak, stick with it!

2. SELECT WHAT CUT YOU WANT. Marbling, cost, tenderness, aging?

3. GAUGE THE SIZE OF THE STEAK AND GET A FEEL FOR IT. Thick or thin?

4. PULL THE STEAK FROM THE REFRIGERATOR. Defrost to room temperature—never microwave.

5. DRY THE STEAK COMPLETELY. Remember—moisture creates steam, steam prevents crust! We want to remove all surface moisture.

6. HEAT THE PAN. 3 to 4 minutes should be fine.

7. GENEROUSLY COAT THE MEAT ON ALL SIDES WITH SALT AND BLACK PEPPER. Salt either 3+ hrs before cooking, or immediately before. AKA—not 5 minutes before.

8. ADD FAT. Don’t use butter or olive oil—canola, peanut, grapeseed oils are better.

9. THROW ON THE STEAK. Pick up the steak once, let oil flow, and place back down.

10. FLIP THE STEAK AND ADJUST THE HEAT. Look for a reddish brown color, then flip. Turn down heat.

11. GAUGE THE DONENESS. Have a good idea of how you like your steak cooked.

12. REST THE STEAK, BUT NOT TOO MUCH. Thin steaks for a minute, thicker for a few minutes.

13. SERVE THE STEAK. Always slice the meat against the grain.

Check out Knife: Texas Steakhouse Meals at Home, available from any book retailer.

The above is adapted with permission from Flatiron Books from Knife (c) 2017 John Tesar. All rights reserved.

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