Without a doubt, every foodie and steak lover out there have wondered how to sear the perfect steak, a method of cooking meat that results in a surprisingly flavorful, juicy, and tender meat.
For starters, steak searing is one of the easiest methods that you could practice yourself. Though, if you order one in a restaurant, they appear to be quite expensive, which makes you believe that it’s a cumbersome process of cooking. Steaks don’t need exquisite sauces just to taste good. Besides, you don’t need to cover up the natural flavors of the meat. A delectable steak only needs a good seasoning of salt and pepper, a little butter, and the ideal technique.
How to Sear the Perfect Steak
- For 30 minutes to an hour before cooking your steak, you should take it out of the refrigerator and thaw it first. The reason for this, if it’s at 35 degrees F, rather than the ideal 65 degrees F, the outside part of the steak must be cooked a little longer in order for the inside to get the desired cooking temperature. The end result would be, an overdone and tough steak.
- A few minutes before cooking the steak, preheat the skillet over medium high heat (without oil or anything in it).
- Never use nonstick cookware. Instead, stick to a plain uncoated pan, that has a good heat retention. Copper core, heavy bottomed, and cast iron are some of the ideal pans for searing. Furthermore as much as possible, pick a pan that’s close in size with the meat you’re going to cook. The reason, if you use a gargantuan pan for a very small steak, the uncovered areas will be burned with the meat juices.
- As the pan heats up, use a paper towel to pat the steak. The paper towel would absorb any additional moisture that might be present on the meat. Moisture is the enemy of a seared, browned, caramelized steak because excess moisture doesn’t sear, but rather, steam the meat instead.
- Season the steak with a generous amount of salt and pepper. Don’t worry about over seasoning it, just season it like a pro! Ideally, you should do a 1/2 to 3/4 tsp of salt on both sides. You may sound like a lot, however, keep in mind that the inside is not seasoned, which means that seasoning the outside is very essential. Also, make sure that you rub the cracked pepper and salt into the meat that you’ll be searing.
- In order to determine if the pan is pretty hot and ready for searing, hold your hand above the surface and see if there’s any radiating heat. Then, sprinkle some water onto the pan. If the tiny droplets evaporate instantly, that’s a good sign. Also, hold the end of the meat in the pan and see if it’ll sizzle. If it does, you’re ready to sear.
- For a 1 inch thick steak, cook each side for about 2-4 minutes. An ideal seared steak should have a beautiful brown color. If it turns gray, that means the pan you’re using is not hot enough. Don’t forget to sear all the outer areas of the meat.
- Never touch the steak while it’s cooking. Try your best to resist the temptation. NEVER flip it more than once. Constant flipping could prevent the heat from penetrating the meat thoroughly. Thus, you’ll only end up cooking the outside surface and this will result in a tough edge.
- To know if it’s done, you could use an instant read thermometer. The ideal temperature is 120 degrees F and an additional 5 degrees as it rests.
- Pushing on the steak with your fingers could also help you determine how well done it is. The firmer it is, the more cooked it is.
- After taking your steak off the pan, let it rest on a wire rack for ten minutes. Cutting it right away will result in juices running onto your plate. Resting the steak will allow the juices to redistribute throughout the steak, giving you a steak that’s nice and juicy!
Start practicing now and you will soon find yourself receiving complements left, right, and center by your friends and family!