A tender, juicy steak is one of my favourite things to eat. A friend recently attempted to bribe me with a steak (he did Something Terrible, and was hoping to buy silence), and it would have been successful if Shanahan’s had been open. It’s one of those things, however, that I’ve never really got the hang of cooking myself. It’s nice to have certain things that you only eat in restaurants; for me it’s lasagne and those super-cheffy dishes that involve reductions and drizzles and beds of celeriac something or other (frankly not bothered to do that kind of stuff at home). If I was loaded, I would be happy to only eat steak in good restaurants, but unfortunately the price of restaurant steak is pretty high. I’m fine with doing a minute steak for a sandwich or something like that, but am nervous of trying to cook quality fillets myself, in the fear that I will overcook and hence RUIN them.
According to the Guardian’s Word of Mouth blog yesterday, I am making the same mistake that many home cooks do: searing my steak to ‘lock in’ the juices. Apparently this does not work, and a slower-cooked, unseared steak will be juicier. Of course there is a ‘but’, there always is: the seared steak will be slightly drier but will have the delicious charred crust that is such an integral part of the pleasure of steak. The Word of Mouth piece has loads of advice in the comments, and I will give them all a try with some steak from my butchers over the next while.
Do you do a mean steak? What are your cooking secrets? And what cuts are the best?