here is nothing quite like a good, juicy steak cooked on a grill. But, many people don't know grilling secrets such as the best cuts to use, what size they should be, how long to cook the steaks, and marinades to use.
Choosing the correct cut of meat is very important when grilling. Some of the best steaks for grilling are the premium cuts such as:
- Filet Mignon
The filet mignon is a stylish cut taken from the heart of the beef tenderloin that has outstanding taste as well as texture.
- Top Sirloin
The top sirloin is a juicy cut taken from the center of the sirloin - the tenderest part - and a great cut for grilling.
The t-bone is a succulent cut that is a favorite of steak fans. It is both a strip sirloin (with the bone) and a tender filet mignon.
- New York Strip (sometimes known as Kansas City Strip)
The New York strip is such an excellent cut for grilling, many grilling experts refer to it as the "ultimate" steak for cooking out.
The Porterhouse is a very large steak that is actually a combination of two steaks: the New York strip on one side and a tender filet on the other.
- Rib Eye
Another classic cut, the rib eye has marbling throughout the meat - making it one of the juiciest cuts as well as very tender.
Thickness of the steak is very important. Each cut should be between 1 inch and 1 Ω inches thick. The strip steaks and top sirloin should be a little less expensive than the filet mignon, t-bone, porterhouse, and rib eye.
Many people like to marinate their steaks before cooking. You can purchase marinades in the grocery store (A1 brand offers several different types) or make your own. If you are not opposed to using alcohol, beer makes an excellent marinade. You can combine 1 12-ounce can of beer, Ω cup of chili sauce, º up of salad oil, 2 teaspoons of soy sauce, 2 gloves of crushed garlic, and 1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard. Let that simmer for 30 minutes over a medium heat. Marinate your meat in the mixture overnight in the refrigerator to tenderize and allow the meat to absorb the flavor. You can also brush your meat with the marinade as you cook. Another great homemade marinade includes 1 Ω cup of steak sauce, 1 tablespoon of soy sauce, 1/3 cup of Italian salad dressing, 1/3 cup of honey, and Ω teaspoon of garlic powder.
Many people prefer to use a rub on their steaks rather than marinate them. A rub is a combination of spice and herbs that is rubbed on the meat about an hour before grilling. It adds a great flavor to the meat, but is quicker than marinade as it does not require the overnight soaking. An excellent recipe for a rub that will give your steaks a smoky flavor is 1 tablespoon of chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder, cumin, cracked black pepper, white pepper, and kosher salt plus 2 teaspoons of oregano, 1 teaspoon of coriander, and Ω teaspoon of cayenne pepper. If you use a rub, be sure to rub the mixture into the cut of meat, not just daub it across the top.
There are other options for cooking steaks other than marinades and rubs. Many times, filet mignons are served wrapped in bacon (held on by a skewer) or you can cut your steak and combine it on a skewer with vegetables like peppers, squash, and onion to make a shish kabob.
Coat your grill with non-stick kitchen spray before you begin to keep your steaks from sticking to the grill. Preheat your grill before placing your steaks on. Resist the temptation to put your steaks on before the grill is properly preheated. The proper temperature for grilling steaks should be around 550 degrees Fahrenheit. Trim any excess fat from the side of the cut to prevent flare-ups and curling when grilling.
You should only turn your steaks once on the grill to prevent drying them out. How long you will cook your steak depends on how well you want it cooked. You can use a grilling fork with a digital thermometer to see how well done your steak is. If you want your steak rare, the temperature should be no more than 150 degrees when done. If you want medium, the temperature should be no more than 160 degrees when done. Finally, if you want well done, you should have a temperature of at least 170 degrees.
After grilling your steak, allow it to set for five minutes before serving to let the juices settle. Serve with a baked potato, salad or other side dish and enjoy!
'Big D' Danny Raposo
President of Big D's House of Munch
& Food Writer
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