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Strip loin steaks

A friend has informed me that strip loin steak is one of the prime cuts and most expensive.

Where can I buy good striploin up in North York and how much would I expect to pay per pound ? I have been told that No Frills is offering it this week for about $4 for an 8 ounce
cut. How does that rate as a fair price? thanks

Any suggestions for preparing it?

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  1. As a Frugal Scot, I'm sure you love the price, but you might want to boil those steaks. North York...you might want to check out Bruno's on Avenue Road or if you are feeling expansive try Pusateri's just a little further south.
    To cook. Only grill with a little olive oil and salt and pepper then for an eight ounce steak about 4 to 5 minutes a side for M/R. Let sit for 10 minutes under foil before serving.

    Good Luck,
    braiser boy

    3 Replies
    1. re: braiser boy

      I know where BRUNOs is but as a Frugal Scot,as you so cleverly intimated , I have not been in there. So tell me quietly ;How much per pd would I have to shell for a Brunos variety? and Pusateris?
      Boiling doesn't sound so bad!

      1. re: fruglescot

        I'm trying to remember what I've seen at Bruno's. I'm pretty sure they have two different grades. The cheaper grade is about $13.99/lb. The more expensive is something over $20/lb. Even the cheaper grade is very good.

        1. re: fruglescot

          Sorry, I didn't mean to intimate...just picked up on your handle. I would think you might want to double your budget at either of those stores, maybe triple at the big P. Their's will be "AAA" beef. But ask yourself this...if you can prepare a meal to restaurant standards then why settle for second rate ingredients. I believe in carefully choosing ingredients (with an eye to economy) but I don't believe many home cooks can achieve great meals using mediocre ingredients.
          Then it depends on the person with whom you are sharing the steaks. If you are to impress, then go the extra mile. You'll thank me for this advice.


          braiser boy

      2. Frankly, I go to the local Price Chopper, where they sell entire beef rib-eyes for about $4.50/lb (cryo-packed). I slice them up into steaks as thick as I like (generally 1 1/2 inches). This gives you about a dozen great steaks for about $30. I like to to grill them with a little PC Montreal Steak Spice shaken over them, and serve them very rare.

        1. CORRECTION:
          I checked out the strip loins at No Frills tonight (SAT) and they were $4.99 for an individually kryonic wrapped steak of 0.227 Kgs How close is that to 8 0unces?)

          2 Replies
          1. re: fruglescot

            I'm sure the steaks at No Frills stink so the price makes sense. Good butcher shops (ie. Cumbrae) charge around $20/lb or more for a quality dry aged strip loin. If price is your primary issue Costco generally has decent meat for a good price. Personally I much prefer rib eye to strip as there is more flavour but that is just me. Follow braiser's tip above for cooking, anything other than salt+pepper on a good steak is a total waste IMO, although I do prefer mine on the rare side of medium rare.

            Also, to answer your question on weight... google has a nice calculator that can help out. :-)

            1. re: Vise

              Longos might be a middle road for you.
              Much cheaper than Cumbrae and Pusateri's, and in my opinion better than Brunos.
              Their Black Angus can be good.
              Just look for well marbled, and let it sit in the refrigerator for a couple of days.
              Incidentally, bought the dry aged rib (my preference) at Thuet this week.
              Tasty but not tender.
              Big disappointment at just under $30. per pound.
              They also had Kobe beef (real Kobe) for $165. a pound.

          2. I'd NEVER choose a strip loin over a rib, which is a much tastier and more tender cut than a strip loin at every price level.

            Bruno's and Pusateri's would be your best North York options, or a Loblaw's with a Certified Angus counter. I don't know current strip loin prices. I'll bet that a No Frills version would be dry and tough, but you never know.

            7 Replies
            1. re: embee

              Strip loin from No Frills
              It says on the package "Cut from USDA select or higher"

              1. re: fruglescot

                Yep. And what you'll find at some of the places folks are mentioned are usually USDA Choice or Prime or the Canadian equivalents.

                Was just at bruno's and the cheaper striploin was $13.99/lb. The USDA Prime was $30.99/lb. Didn't notice the categorization of the cheaper cut. But I've bought it before and it's just fine, especially seared on the stove or high heat on the grill.

                1. re: fruglescot

                  USDA Select is a grade so low in quality that no reputable mainstream US supermarket will carry it. The minimum grade generally available is choice and the best is prime. However, the grading system allows for such variation at each grade that these terms are guidelines only. But you would not want to buy a USDA select strip loin. You might get a perfectly okay steak, but you'd be better off just buying a cheaper cut of beef. If you are going to pay for strip loin, you want good marbling and at least three weeks aging.

                  Many factors affect the eating qualities of beef, such as marbling, animal age, wet or dry aging, and cooking procedures. But you don't really want to bother with a strip loin below Canada AA or USDA choice. Certified Angus is a US brand name and not part of the government grading program. It is more-or-less equivalent to high end US choice.

                  To reiterate my bias, though, go for a rib steak, and get it cut from the "inferior" chuck end, which tastes better than the loin end.

                  1. re: embee

                    The thuet steaks were nice dark colour, well, and evenly marbled, and dry aged 60, or 90 days, can't remember exactly.
                    High heat - cast iron pan.
                    They were chewy, not close to expectations.
                    Could they be using a lower grade??
                    I am perplexed.

                    1. re: erly

                      Your description of that steak mirrors that of a high quality, well aged piece of meat. How thick was it and to what temperature (i.e., degree of doneness) did you cook it?

                      Assuming you didn't overcook the steak, it may be just a quirk of that piece of meat. In the end, it isn't a manufactured product and the likely tenderness is a guess based largely on observation.

                      Frankly, I have eaten Thuet's food in a variety of circumstances and I don't think it lives up to its hype. Both his past and present wives had extraordinary marketing/pr skills that have burnished his image over the top. But I don't think you got ripped off - this can just happen.

                      If it really was aged 90 days, that could conceivably be part of the problem. Only once have I cooked meat with this much age - a rib roast from Cheese Boutique. It was truly the most magnificent rib roast I have ever seen. It emerged from the oven suitably rare, yet was both overly chewy for a prime rib and quite dry. Perhaps 90 days dry aging is just too much.

                      1. re: embee

                        Thanks embee,
                        Possibly the 90 day aging.
                        Very chewy, but looked picture perfect.
                        It was 1 1/2", sat at room temp. for over an hour, and cooked to rare.

                        1. re: erly

                          I've also had this experience with 90 day+ aging. Great flavour but a lot of chew. It's not the choice I would make having steak every time...but then my grandfather used to have his own steaks at Moishe's in Montreal, aging until there was mold that needed to be cut off before cooking and serving to him. So I guess once in a while I enjoy seriously aged steak - it's in my blood.

              2. Loblaws has AAA grade striploins on this week for $6.99/lb - one pound = 16 ounces.
                Locations at Dupont/Christie, Queens Quay, etc.
                227g = 1/2 pound = 8 ounces.
                Prime Rib Roasts are on for $4.99/lb - if you ask your butcher nice - he will cut a roast into steaks for you!

                2 Replies
                  1. re: thebutcher

                    My purchase of steaks/standing rib is only done at Loblaw's (Dupont & Christie). I generally buy a 'strip loin' for my husband and a 'tenderloin' for me..if I'm having guests I ask in advance which cut they prefer. The Butcher never hesitates one iota to cut any/all meat that I ask for. My Standing Rib Roast is always cut specially for me with the rib (bone) intact..not cut off and tied on and also a fair bit of fat left on (not trimmed off or tied on). The only difficulty I've had with Loblaws is that they sometimes don't order in enough Brisket at this location but I have spoken with the Store/Meat Manager about when they should be ordering 'extra'.
                    Before we left for Jamaica (December 7th) I heard a rumour that Christie & Dupont was in for some really SIGNIFICANT changes in the early Spring... I do HOPE that they don't change into a 'superstore' or 'no frills'.....Will have to wait and see.........

                  2. I have recently lucked into some excellent sterling rib at dominion. It is important to learn how to assess the meat by appearance, much more important IMO than anything else.

                    8 Replies
                    1. re: deelicious

                      Me Too! I have good luck at a Dominion-A&P Savacentre, where I can usually find a nicely marbled prime rib roast (never well-marbled, that is beyond their scope). I can cut it into two or three thick steaks at home. The counter service is generally helpful, but I have to buzz or ring them. The fish counter is worth a glance, too: huge scallops at about $2 each this week. That's on my menu tonight.
                      fruglescot, I always look for last day markdowns at the Savacentre meat display. Upscale packages are $4 off, or more, and rarely discoloured.

                      1. re: jayt90

                        Good tip. Jayt90
                        I was told by a grocery chain butcher, long ago, that I should not be discouraged by a bit of greenish tinge to the meat that's discounted. That the bright red colouring is basically a marketing ploy and that in the past the meat was hung and aged much longer which caused the discolourization but was tastier and much healthier than quick aging.
                        Any thoughts about the validity of that statement or was he just trying to move out a few more cuts before tossing it?

                        1. re: fruglescot

                          Probably true. I bought a $30 rib eye at Cumbrae's on a Saturday, and it developed a spot over the weekend, still wrapped. It had a slightly gamey flavour but was fine. I think they were pushing the age to the limit, however.

                      2. re: deelicious

                        Sorry for my lack of understanding but could you explain a couple of things to me" !) What is Sterling rib
                        2) IMO? or was that INFO?
                        Thanks deelicious

                        1. re: fruglescot

                          IMO - In my opinion.
                          IMHO - In my humble opinion. Took me awhile to figure this one out.

                          1. re: millygirl

                            Merci, for clearing that up millygirl.
                            Have a great Christmas day.

                            1. re: fruglescot

                              This a premium cut of beef from the giant Cargill operation in western Canada and the U.S. The top 10% carcasses are used as they have better marbling than regular supermarket cuts, and they get 14 days wet aging for tenderness. They get a premium price in upscale supermarkets, such as Dominion or Sobey's. They are also sold to steakhouses, but the most expensive ones will probably have other sources.

                        2. i bought strip loins from no frills when they had a sale during the summer. do they taste like an expensive steakhouse cut? not at all....but with some marinating, trimming and grilling them to medium rare....... they were still damn good! you get what you pay for.......but in this case it's still a good enough buy to not pass up on. better than a grilled chicken breast or hamburger by a mile.

                          i recommend you buy a couple to marinate and try for yourself....just cut them against the grain to serve....

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: rayrayray

                            If you need to marinate a strip loin to make it acceptable then it is pretty obvious what kind of quality (or lack thereof) we are talking about here. If you are going to marinate why not go with hangar or flank?

                            1. re: Vise

                              I use the cheaper cuts in my slow cooker with great success.

                              From my own experience a cheaper cut of meat (Strip Loin) on the grill is a "hit-and-miss" kind of thing for me. And I have been pleasantly surprised.
                              I have been disappointed enough that spending the extra cash on a better cut of meat has been the way to go. That's just me.
                              Why risk a surprise?
                              Strip Loins all come down to the marbling and aging as pointed out and a lot of the times, the meat cutters (I don't consider them butchers) at the chain stores have no idea on the history of the product although they are nice people.
                              Lastly, it all comes down to how you prepare the meat and I have made every mistake in the book.
                              I used to put all kinds of Heinz BBQ sauces on my steaks while on the grill and wonder why they had that burnt taste... yuck...
                              Years of grilling taught me to keep it simple during the cooking stage, if you must, season and sauce afterwards.
                              It's all a mater of taste and preference in the end.
                              Good luck!

                              1. re: Vise

                                i bought it because it was on sale at a price that was simply to good to pass up. it was much cheaper than flank at the time i bought it.

                            2. I still have an online flyer saved to my computer from No Frills.......advertising a cryo-packed full beef strip loin. When I bought one, I should have immediately gone back and bought 10 of them......at the amazing price of $3.79 per pound........yes, you read right....three seventy nine.
                              It was advertised as "AA or better" and it was. For a total of about $21, I cut that sucker into 8 thick, juicy portions and my wife and I pigged out over three days on fresh BBQ'd steaks, then enjoyed the remaining ones later in the month.
                              I've asked the owner of that store many times since then when "they" are coming again....but, unfortunately, he has no idea. Even as the owner/buyer of his No Frills franchise, he says it's totally up to Loblaw when any particular item will become available on special.
                              All I can say is, if you ever see this product, even at up to $4.25 a pound, grab all you can and fill the freezer. P.S. I'm no frugal Scot.....just a cheap goddam Irishman who happens to like steak!

                              3 Replies
                              1. re: Bultaco

                                No Frills and Price Chopper do have these strip loin sales from time to time. Usually they are U.S. Select, equivalent to Can. grade A.
                                You did well on this sale, but the next one could have little marbling and poorer flavor.
                                If you see U.S. Choice, or Canada grade AA or higher, the meat quality is better.

                                There was a surplus of Canadian beef in the stores about a month ago, but prices have gone up this month.

                                1. re: jayt90

                                  Price Chopper had it on sale a few weeks ago,but like you said I didn't think the quality was that great. I usually only buy AAA...

                                  There've been good sales on eye of round, inside round and other roasts of late, AAA too.

                                  1. re: aser

                                    That reminds me of another caveat. Read the labels on these carefully. Some of these packages contain AAA or USDA choice meat, while others are Canada AA (or even lower) or USDA Select. The ones at Price Chopper were not only of poor quality, they also contained water retaining additives. Beware "seasoned" (or similar) wording.