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"French Medium Rare" ? [Split from steakhouse thread on L.a. board]

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Enlighten me as to "French Medium Rare" is, please.

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  1. French MR (or "a point") is more rare than the traditional "English" MR and might even be considered just rare by our typical standards. French rare is really "bloody" as evidenced by the word for it, "saignant" . Maybe it's just easier to describe how you want your steak to look like.

    3 Replies
    1. re: kdoc

      Yeah... I would say its between what I would consider Rare (just seared) & what a decent restaurant typically considers Medium Rare

      1. re: kdoc

        Eat Nopal- Your post made me think:
        1. So if French MR is rare by our standards, why not just ask for rare and if you prefer really "bloody" rare ask for French rare?
        2. I would luv to have every CHound eating at a steakhouse in the next few weeks ask the server if they know what "French" preceding the doneness means and report back on how well the steakhouses know their cooked meat (so to speak).

        1. re: ilikefood

          I have found Rare to be a very ambigous term in the U.S... as few people ask for their beef that way. The waiter is usually confused... & I have even had chef's come out & ask me what I want. Asking for just bloody doesn't help either.

          I have found that asking for French Medium Rare... I typically get it right at contemporary high-end, meat specializing restaurants... but places like Ruth Chris', or old school meat houses like Mortons or Palm's never seem to get it.

      2. from what I remember hearing someone tell me about French doneness, French rare is to have the chef hold it up to the grill just long enough for the steak to get nervous, a French medium is an American medium rare, and French well done is American medium.

        1 Reply
        1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester

          A good vet could bring it back!