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Cooking Prime Steak the Right Way

funkadelik Jan 14, 2012 11:24 AM

I was researching the fine art of cooking Prime Steaks and I came across a great video series from a butcher who knows his meats.

I added the last 3 videos in the series because the first few are about how to select the right type of steak and what not.

Please tell me what you think about his technique and if I should also cook in a similar fashion.



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    ediblover RE: funkadelik Jan 14, 2012 11:54 AM

    I agree with some of the things he said, most notably that the steak continues to cook after you've removed it (though, this varies by thickness) and oiling the steak, but other than those I found myself cringing.

    Cutting it up (the hatch marks) is just so wrong. Doing that is just going to result in a greater loss of juice/flavor/moistness.

    He (severely) under-seasoned the steak and the timing of the seasoning was (possibly) off. Salt the steak like mad the day before you'll cook it for best results.

    The temperature of the pan was too low. The sound when the steak hit the pan was off (rather muted - You want to hear a good sizzle) and he didn't develop any crust.

    His method of applying the sauce is debatable. I prefer to either have it on the side or apply it with the butter in the finishing process, just so the sugars in the sauce browns without burning it.

    1. r
      rasputina RE: funkadelik Jan 14, 2012 11:57 AM

      Well he immediately lost credibility with me by cooking it in a pan on the stove. What a waste.

      8 Replies
      1. re: rasputina
        joonjoon RE: rasputina Jan 16, 2012 01:17 PM

        Pan searing is a perfectly good way of doing steak.

        1. re: joonjoon
          monavano RE: joonjoon Jan 16, 2012 01:38 PM

          Here, here!
          I bought prime sirloin at Costco and seared it off in a pan and then made a pan sauce and it was terrific.

          1. re: joonjoon
            biondanonima RE: joonjoon Jan 16, 2012 05:02 PM

            Yes, but that guy is definitely NOT pan searing. Pan searing implies a hot, uncrowded pan to create instant browning. What that guy is doing is more akin to steaming.

            1. re: biondanonima
              joonjoon RE: biondanonima Jan 17, 2012 09:03 AM

              Right, but that's not what rasputina was saying.

            2. re: joonjoon
              rasputina RE: joonjoon Jan 17, 2012 01:42 PM

              In your opinion, and you are welcome to yours. Just as I am. If you notice my post said he lost credibility with ME. I find pan cooking to be inferior to searing at 800+ degrees over wood. Which is how I cook steak at home.

              1. re: rasputina
                joonjoon RE: rasputina Jan 17, 2012 02:23 PM

                Well we are all here on Chowhound to exchange ideas and opinions, and in my opinion it's silly to look down on a method of cooking that's used at many of the best restaurants in the world just because it's not your home wood grill. In addition you stated your comment in a pretty authoritative voice, as if no good steak can come out of a pan.

                You're telling me Thomas Keller loses credibility with you because he pan sears steaks in his restaurant, and that that's an idea worth holding onto? That's a pretty insane idea you're selling.

                1. re: joonjoon
                  Midlife RE: joonjoon Jan 17, 2012 02:58 PM

                  As if you need help here joonjoon ;o) ............................ down below JoanN refers to the Lobel site. Lobel is one of the premiere meat purveyors in the US and their site gives instructions for grilling, PAN SEARING, and PAN ROASTING steaks.


                  I don't think it's the technique that's getting booed here so much as the actual method used.

                  1. re: joonjoon
                    rasputina RE: joonjoon Jan 17, 2012 03:31 PM

                    I don't care if you think I'm silly. I also don't care how Thomas Keller cooks his steaks.

            3. f
              fourunder RE: funkadelik Jan 14, 2012 11:59 AM

              OUCH ! ! ! ! !

              Furrows? Meat Tenderizers? Barbecue sauce? Cold pan! Crowding the steaks! Poking with the fork!

              I do not find any of his thoughts particularly any good. and the video series should be titled...

              *How NOT To Cook A $30 Prime Steak*

              5 Replies
              1. re: fourunder
                chefdaddyo RE: fourunder Jan 14, 2012 01:36 PM

                Agreed, f'under. Could he break any more rules on basic steak cooking? Ignore those videos, funkadelik. He did mention he's been a supermarket meat cutter for 'many years'. Save the BBQ sauces for cheaper steaks. Anyone, remember anyone, can post on youtube and boast about their food knowledge. Really hot (heavy) pan, simple application of s&p, let it rest. Oh, skip turning w/ a table fork. Pros use tongs.

                1. re: chefdaddyo
                  rasputina RE: chefdaddyo Jan 14, 2012 02:33 PM

                  I love BBQ sauce, but on steak? And prime steak at that? sacrilege

                  1. re: rasputina
                    fourunder RE: rasputina Jan 14, 2012 02:44 PM

                    Just looking at the steaks makes me suspect of his knowledge....both steaks do not have any marbling to suggest they are prime. Also, he could not have picked two worse looking steaks for the demonstration......

                    Looking at another of his videos, both steaks only cost $15 and change @ $5.99/lb.

                    Talk about embellishment

                    : 0)

                    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mTDWtC... !

                    1. re: fourunder
                      jameshig RE: fourunder Jan 17, 2012 01:30 PM

                      Totally agree- no marbling- the seasonings he use suck, and BBQ sauce? Seriously?

                      Not sure if you were paying attention to the pan, but it's a crappy aluminum pan. Way too thin.

                      And putting the steaks in a cold pan?

                      Real knowledgeable.

                      1. re: jameshig
                        joonjoon RE: jameshig Jan 17, 2012 01:33 PM

                        Contrary to popular belief, thin pans can get you AMAZING sears on steak.

              2. f
                funkadelik RE: funkadelik Jan 14, 2012 03:15 PM

                Thanks for the input guys. What about the meat tenderizer, does that help tenderize and bring out all the flavors of the meat?

                4 Replies
                1. re: funkadelik
                  Living4fun RE: funkadelik Jan 14, 2012 04:06 PM

                  A prime steak will not need and should not ever have meat tenderizer applied.

                  1. re: Living4fun
                    biondanonima RE: Living4fun Jan 14, 2012 04:34 PM

                    Even a choice steak doesn't need tenderizer if you choose your cut wisely and cook it properly (i.e., NOT THE WAY IT WAS DONE IN THAT VIDEO!). My husband just shed a tear for the poor cow who died to let that moron make that ridiculous video.

                    1. re: biondanonima
                      rasputina RE: biondanonima Jan 14, 2012 07:28 PM


                  2. re: funkadelik
                    sbp RE: funkadelik Jan 17, 2012 02:06 PM

                    Tenderizers dissolve meat. From the outside. They don't make the meat tender.

                  3. j
                    joonjoon RE: funkadelik Jan 16, 2012 01:15 PM


                    First of all, there's no way those are prime steaks, thank god because the only place that the steaks he made belongs is in the garbage.

                    Let's take a perfectly good piece of meat, butcher the crap out of it, then overcook and drown in BBQ sauce. Ugh, I'm feeling sick. This is a textbook "how to do everything wrong" video.

                    1. ipsedixit RE: funkadelik Jan 16, 2012 01:18 PM

                      Ignore Youtube.

                      With prime steaks, the adage of "less is more" cannot be more true.

                      Season with salt and pepper, then cook it on a grill (or hot cast iron pan) until your desired doneness (leaving some time for the steak to cook a bit more after you take it off the heat).

                      Let it rest.

                      Then plate, serve and enjoy.

                      1. monavano RE: funkadelik Jan 16, 2012 01:43 PM

                        I think that video qualifies for crimes against meat.

                        1. Midlife RE: funkadelik Jan 16, 2012 04:50 PM

                          Can't agree more with those who are amazed at these videos. I'm pretty broad-minded when it comes to personal tastes, but there's so-o-o-o much here to disagree with.

                          1. j
                            jameshig RE: funkadelik Jan 17, 2012 01:31 PM

                            Are you sure this video wasn't meant to be "how not to cook steaks?"

                            This dude's an idiot.

                            1. JoanN RE: funkadelik Jan 17, 2012 01:41 PM

                              I you want to know how to cook a prime steak, either indoors or out, head on over to Lobel's Web site:


                              4 Replies
                              1. re: JoanN
                                jameshig RE: JoanN Jan 17, 2012 01:45 PM

                                Sorry JoanN, nope- this ruined it:

                                "Place the steaks 3 to 5 inches from the flame to sear the outside and seal in the juices."

                                Nullifies any other information on the page.

                                1. re: jameshig
                                  JoanN RE: jameshig Jan 17, 2012 01:49 PM

                                  Agree that's a pretty stupid thing for the best butcher in Manhattan to be saying. Nonetheless, I use their pan roasting method and their charts for timing (outdoors is not an option for me) and get results that rival many of the best steakhouses in the city.

                                  1. re: jameshig
                                    joonjoon RE: jameshig Jan 17, 2012 02:37 PM

                                    Hyperbole much? How does that one statement ruin or nullify the method as a whole? When you follow the method as described, you'll end up with a perfectly fine steak.

                                    1. re: joonjoon
                                      monavano RE: joonjoon Jan 17, 2012 02:42 PM

                                      I'm going to give this method a try. I've never cooked a steak quite like that, but it does remind me of how my mom did-- she broiled them almost every time. She cooked the living daylights out of them, which I will certainly avoid!

                                2. steakman55 RE: funkadelik Jan 17, 2012 04:00 PM

                                  I have grilled steaks at home for 50 years and here is what works for me ....buy USDA Prime meat if available. It is not widely available in lots of grocery stores, but Costco and Whole Foods regularly carry it. I like dry aged, which tenderizes and gives the meat a rich flavor, but some prefer wet aged. Dry aged is more expensive and usually served in top steak houses.

                                  I take the meat out an hour before grilling, and let it warm a little. I also trim lots of fat since the meat is heavily marbled. I used to salt an hour before, but lately have switched to just before grilling. Use kosher salt and put more on than you think. Also coarsely ground black pepper.

                                  Grill that works for me is a Weber, with real charcoal, not briquets, and certainly not gas. Build fire and let coals get hot, with grey ash.

                                  Sear steaks on each side and don't worry about grill marks. I sear with a brown/mahogany crust. Put lid on steak to finish cooking, which will slow the fire. You can also move steak off the direct coals to the edge of the fire. I use a fork, which does not hurt a thing. When the steak starts to firm up, it is approaching done. I take it up and put a pat of garlic butter on sometimes. It will continue to cook. Let rest at least 5 minutes for juices to recirculate. Dry aged meat will not bleed a lot when you cut into it.

                                  As for cut, I love ribeyes and NY strips. With or without bones. Filets lack taste to me. Enjoy!

                                  1. tommy RE: funkadelik Jan 18, 2012 06:17 AM

                                    Aren't those $7.50 Choice or Select steaks, rather than $30 Prime steaks?

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