Quick Recipes and Easy

How To Grill A Great Steak – A Three Step Process

Step 1 – Marinating

For a grilled piece of meat to truly be fantastic it must have been marinated properly. Let me give you two rules of thumb. The first is that you need to let the meat have some time in the juices you are soaking it in.

Marinating for three hours won’t cut it. (Naturally, there are exceptions, but this is just a rule of thumb.) It needs time to soak the flavors up. The other rule of thumb is that the marinade should include some kind of acidic component (e.g. vinegar). This not only gives the meat flavor, but it also acts like a tenderizer. It breaks the toughness in the meat down.

Here is a simple steak marinade. You can find a whole bunch more on the internet. Just search Google for “steak marinade recipe”

1/2 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 cup of water

Mix all ingredients for marinade. Pour over steak. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Turn meat over one time.

Step 2 – Grilling

This is really an simple step, but so many people get it incorrect. They’re worried of overdoing the meat. Perhaps it’s the other way around. They are worried of it being underdone.

Side note: I have a slightly prankish side to me. I can’t help it. Speaking of underdone meat reminded me of something. Next time you see someone eating a rare steak, wait until the meat just touches their mouth. Then make “mooing” noises like a cow. It can be quite humorous. It’s even better if there is a vegetarian present.

Okay, I’m back. I promise I won’t let that happen again. Telling when a steak is done is simple. But before you even place the steak on the grill, you want to make sure that the grill is hot! The hotter the better. A hotter grill cooks quicker. Quicker cooking equals a juicier steak.

Place the steak on the grill. Now watch the sides. You’re looking for the sides of the meat to start turning gray. When that happens, flip the meat. There should be excellent grill marks on the meat.

When the sides have grayed up completely, look for excellent grill marks on the other side. If they are present, it’s time to check for doneness.

This small test that I’m going to tell you was taught to me when I worked a restaurant by an ancient small-order cook.

Take a fork or your spatula and press on the center of the steak. Try to go it side to side. Raw meat will total squish and go side-to-side.

Well-done meat will not. It will be harder to press down, and none of the side-to-side movement will be there. By the way, a well-done steak isn’t worth eating. You might as well consider it burnt.

When the steak is ready to eat, it will be slightly harder to press and have a small side-to-side movement. If you are still unsure as to doneness, take a knife with a thin blade. Make a cut half way through the meat in the center about one inch long. Twist the blade to reveal the center. It should be a light pink.

Step 3 – Rest

This is a very vital step, yet seems to be skipped far too much. Remove it from the grill and just let it be for 5 minutes. This will result in much more succulent steak. It needs this time to reabsorb its own juices.

If you did make a cut in the meat when testing for doneness, make sure the cut is facing up.

And that is how to grill a fantastic steak. Obviously the more you do it, the better you will get.

Nathan Pennington is the webmaster of meatlodge.com meatlodge.com. Visit the Meat Lodge today for fantastic recipes, how-to’s, and an occasional insightful article (e.g. does meat really cause diabetes?)

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