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May 20, 2007 05:43 AM
Discussion

Anyone had Chicago-style steak

Has anyone had there stak cooked Chicago-style, i.e., cooked to the desired level and then quickly charred. I'd like to try my next restaurant steak cooked this way, but am curious about how charred the outside is done. I understand near the end of the cooking process the outside of the steak is covered in butter to do the charring.

Thanks!

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  1. Um. I live in Chicago and have never heard the term Chicago style when talking about a steak. You may mean char-crust? That usually involves seasonings similar to blackening. Ruth Chris Steakhouse uses butter on their steaks but they're out of New Orleans originally. Perhaps you could provide a little more information so you'll get the answer you desire

    1 Reply
    1. re: bryan

      You are mistaken. I am also from Chicago and have had Chicago Style and Pittsburgh style both many times. They are very similar with the exception that Pittsburgh is usually rare where Chicago is slightly less charred (No soot) and usually medium rare in the center. No seasonings such as blackening seasonings are used. Simply a little oil, Kosher salt and cracked pepper. Read the following in it's entirety:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pittsbu...

      I make it at home all the time. There is no better way to have a steak.

    2. I've never heard of Chicago-style steak. Not sure why you'd cook a steak to the right doneness and then sear it. It seems counterintuitive to me. The only cooking methodology I've hear of regarding the outside would be to order a steak black and blue or Pittsburgh style which means seared on the outside but still rare in the middle.

      1. the way i've heard chicago-style defined is charred on the outside, still quiveringly-rare on the inside.

        6 Replies
        1. re: tuqueboy

          where? when? by who? I've been eating steak in Chicago since the mid 60's and have never heard of anything other than rare, medium rare, medium, medium well....

          1. re: renov8r

            Yes. Exactly. Charred on the outside, very rare on the inside is called Kansas City or black and blue here in Chicago. I wish the OP would post back.

            1. re: bryan

              Thanks for the insight everyone.
              Charred on the outside, very rare on the inside is Pittsburgh style/ Black and Blue around my neck of the woods. Here in Canada, we have the steak chains "The Keg" and "Hy's" who offer "Chicago-style" i.e. charred on the outside, to order on the inside. For example, you can order a "Chicago-medium" vs a "Chicago-rare". "Chicago-rare" of course woul dbe the same as Pittsburgh style/ Black and Blue around here. Anyone been to Hy's (Vancouvers, Whistler, Toronto, Ottawa, Calgary, Winnipeg); or The Keg (accross Canada and also Arizona, Colorado Texas, Washington)?

              1. re: Roberto7

                You are exactly correct sir! I always cook mine Chicago Style Medium Rare using a large heavy cast iron skillet setting right in the red hot coals of my grill. Once it is fully up to the temp of the coals I take my steaks, generously coated with peanut oil then some kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper and set them in the skillet. Then flipping them every 2 minutes until perfect then remove to a plate and cover with butter that's been simmering some crushed garlic and fresh whole sprigs of rosemary and let rest for a good 10 minutes before digging in. Mmmm... Mmmm... Mmmm... Perfect!!!

                1. re: brucebj

                  Why do you need to cook this on "...red hot coals of my grill..."?

                  Seems like using the large heavy cast iron skillet on a stove top would give better control of the temp and not nearly so hot on one's hand(s.)

                  1. re: gwill23

                    Because the higher the temperature the better the sear and it's not tough on your hands at all if you have the proper grilling utensils and good mitts but also because this method makes a lot of smoke. Therefore when I do it on the stove top even with a 600 CFM exhaust hood over my stove that vents outside it will set off my smoke alarms in the house every time. By all means do it the way you wish. I'm just telling it from experience and having done it this way for years now this way provides the best results. A nice crusty charred cap on each side and oh so juicy buttery tender inside.

        2. Here's the recipe to do it yourself perfectly:

          I always cook mine Chicago Style Medium Rare using a large heavy cast iron skillet setting right in the red hot coals of my grill. Once it is fully up to the temp of the coals I take my steaks, generously coated with peanut oil then some kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper and set them in the skillet. Then flipping them every 2 minutes until perfect. Remove from skillet to a plate and cover with butter that's been simmering some crushed garlic and fresh whole sprigs of rosemary and let rest for a good 10 minutes before digging in.

          For a 2 in. thick center cut filet 12 to 14 minutes will get you to approx. rare+ to medium rare. ENJOY!

          1. Interesting query. Reminds me of a good Argentinian friend who took his then-wife to one of the big Chicago steak houses for a special occasion, and he HATED the steaks, which he said were absurdly underdone by his standards.

            He still recalls that the staff seemed contemptuous of his judgment. But you don't want to argue with an Argentinian about steak. Just a general advisement. He's a spectacular cook.

            3 Replies
            1. re: Bada Bing

              What a shame... He obviously chose the wrong steakhouse.

              1. re: Bada Bing

                Very strange. Steakhouse default is usually rare, maximum medium rare. He prefers steaks well done?

                1. re: chowyadoin99

                  I think Argentine beef is different. They flip it a lot rather than our USA filp-only-once rule. He says he can't cook American beef the same way he does Argentine beef. So what counts as "well done" is probably up to dispute. I think their pastured beef must just cook differently. My sense is that their goal is a kind of even cooking throughout rather than the seared outside and rare inside.