If you don’t feel like firing up the grill, you can still make delicious, thick-cut steaks by cooking them in the oven then finishing in the pan. This method from Cook’s Illustrated, via Cookography, results in a beautiful crust but tender pink centre.
Most oven-cooking methods, including one we’ve mentioned previously, involve searing the steak in a pan first, then finishing it in the oven (a method for cooking steak when it’s frozen also uses the sear-then-put-in-oven technique). This new method reverses the process and has these benefits, according to Cookography:
Instead of finishing the steaks in the oven, you start out cooking them in the oven. This allows you to raise the internal temperature of the meat more evenly. I think when the steaks were put in the oven after cooking the exteriors were already much hotter and lead to a more uneven cooking as the centre got up to temperature. Cooking the steaks in the oven first also dries out the exterior of the meat, allowing for the perfect crust when you sear it later. When you sear the steak first, it is much tougher to get the perfect crust because the steaks are releasing more moisture.
Cook’s Illustrated says (membership required) that this method avoids that grey band of meat directly under the crust.
The method is similar to cooking perfect thick steaks on the grill: start at a low heat then finish over high heat to sear.
Definitely worth a try if you want steak house-quality thick steaks at home (don’t forget our other #steak tips while you’re at it).
Pan Seared, Thick Cut Steak [Cookography]