Grilling a great steak is fairly simple but nonetheless requires attention and finesse. The more you practice, the better you’ll get.
- Use better beef. There is nothing more crucial to cooking a steak than starting with great beef. Educate yourself on the options. Talk with your butcher. Look beyond just the grade. Know where your meat is from. Explore and experiment with different cuts.
- Separate the processes of cooking and searing. When cooking, you want a nice low heat to gently cook while you slowly approach the target temperature. When searing, you want a very high heat (as high as you can achieve) to create a wonderfully browned crust as quickly and directly as possible. The order of searing and cooking can be interchanged. Sometimes I sear raw steaks over a roaring fire, and then move them to a low temp zone to slowly finish cooking. Sometimes I start the steaks cooking far from the fire, then once they’re nicely warmed, drop them straight into the hot coals for a reverse sear.
- Nothing beats grilling over a live wood or charcoal fire. Period.
- Don’t forget to rest. After cooking, loosely tent your steak with foil on a wood board and allow it to rest for five to 15 minutes depending on the size of the cut. Proper resting will produce juicer, more tender, and more visually appealing steaks.
- Keep it simple. Let the beef shine. Some of the most delicious steaks I’ve ever enjoyed were made using only three to five ingredients. If you’ve got quality beef, a hot charcoal fire and can execute a perfect sear and cook, there’s often little to no room for improvement with long recipes and fancy accoutrements.