Tips for Grilling a Perfect Steak in the Backyard
A perfect grilled steak starts long before the coals get hot. The most crucial first step could be completely out of your control, that is, if you don't make the food buying choices. Â The quality of beef is based on the marbling of fat. Prime is the best quality. Using prime cuts does not ensure success but this grade of beef will give you the best opportunity to grill that perfect steak. The next grades are Choice and Select. Choice beef is fine cut and could provide you a nice meal. This is the most widely served. Â Select should be left to stews and casserole where seasoning can be used to enhance the flavor.
Farm raised beef can provide the best taste and tenderness. Talk to a local processor or butcher to get recommendations of farms near you. Cattle that are grass-fed and raised through traditional genetics, feed and processing will yield the best quality. Cattle farmed locally are traditionally raised with no antibiotics, hormones or steroids. Prior to packaging, all meats are inspected for wholesomeness by a USDA certified processor so you have no worries on freshness. This is not to say a good cut of beef can't be found at a local supermarket. Many stores still have butchers on staff and sell choice and prime qualities. They may even purchase from a local cattleman. Do some research in your area. Once you find a good source you'll be taking the first step to grilling the perfect steak.
Take the chill off. A steak at room temperature will soak in your seasonings better and will cook faster and more evenly. Twenty minutes resting after removing the beef from the fridge will suffice. This will give you time to heat up the grill and choose a beverage to enjoy while grilling.
Season your steaks about ten minutes before you place them on the grill. This will give time for the flavor to soak into the meat and prevent it from coming off onto the grill. Now about the seasoning. You have taken theÂ time to research the best place to purchase your prime cut of beef. You may have even out to the countryside to a local cattle farm for your prize dinner entree`. Do not over season a Prime cut of beef - a little bit of good salt is all that it needs. Add a dash or two of Cajun spice to take it up a notch but be sure to let the flavor of the beef shine. Heavy seasoning and thick sauces should be left to the select group of beef.
Some prefer charcoal, some prefer propane. I think either are fine. Propane is much more controllable and will allow you the most consistent grill time after time. The important part is heat. You want to bring the temperatures up into the 425-degree range. This will get a nice sear and seal in the juices.
Take a step back! After placing the cut onto the grill don't play with it. This is probably the biggest mistakes a home cook can make. We all want to keep checking the food, flipping it and moving it around. Leave it alone. Determine the time needed based on the thickness and wellness you'd like to achieve. You could find a chart to give you a basis but this is really a learned ability that will improve the more steaks you grill. Flip it once and give it a quarter turn once on each side. And above all do not press it into the grill with your spatula. This removes the juices from the beef and degrades the flavor.
Don't underestimate the visual appeal. The quarter turn is used to make the cross-hatched grill marks. Done correctly your finished grilled steak will have that magazine photo appeal. This is probably not the most important thing, however, the visual will add to the enjoyment before the first bite.
A perfectly prepared steak is within anyone's reach by following these simple tips. Start out with the best quality of beef from your local area, add to that some light side dishes (grilled asparagus is my favorite ) and a cold beverage of choice. Take time toÂ prepare and grill your choice or prime cut and be sure to eat slow and savor the depth of flavor.