How to Make a Steak — Simple Scratch Cooking

by in How-to, May 18th, 2013

London BroilToday we’re talking steak as part of The Good Cook series. Generally, cooking steak involves a direct-heat cooking method, such as a very hot skillet, an oven broiler or taking it outdoors to the grill. Deciding which cooking method is best all depends on what kind of steak you bought, also known as the cut of steak.

New York strip, sirloin and rib eye, familiar steak house favorites, cook up quickly in a very hot skillet on the stovetop (I love using my cast iron), or on the grill. A rare to medium-rare steak needs only three to four minutes on each side. If you prefer your meat cooked medium or medium-well, finish it off in an oven preheated 350 degrees F to keep it tender and juicy.

Flank, skirt and London broil are best prepared using your stove’s broiler or on the grill. These cuts are also best served medium-rare; cook them about five minutes per side, otherwise they become too tough. The way you slice these cuts of steak is another important detail. Hold your knife at a slight angle, about 45 degrees, and slice it across the grain.

I’d also like to talk about dollars and sense when it comes to selecting your cut of meat. Steak, especially if you buy it from the farmers’ market as I do, can eat up a big part of your budget. London broil is the least expensive of all the types I mentioned and has incredible flavor. My other bit of advice is to treat meat as a condiment when planning your menu — 3-ounces per person is good. A little goes a long way toward leaving you feeling satisfied when you round out the meal with sides such as roasted potatoes, veggies and a mixed green salad.

More Steak Inspiration

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Comments (21)

  1. Billy says:

    Good to hear you mention the London Broil cut! It's a great deal but if you don't treat it right it can get down right tough – don't ask me how I know! It is super economical and I do enjoy it in a fresh salad with some bleu cheese. I actually found that cooking it slowly at first – i.e. cooking in the over at 130 for an hour or so goes a long way to help tenderize the cut. It is tough to get the oven that low but if you set it at about 175 then turn it off you can assume that it's warm but not hot. Then you can sear the outside of the meat in a pan and the meat will be more tender from the natural beef enzymes. I slightly prefer the ribeye and have a recipe here for cooking it in a cast iron skillet.

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