The Secret To Perfect Steak: Start With Warm Meat

The Secret to Perfect Steak: Start with Warm Meat

In our never-ending quest for steak perfection, we found one more trick to add to your cooking technique. It comes from esteemed food genius Harold McGee, who says you should make sure the steaks are warm before you cook them.

Picture: Jim U/Flickr

As The Guardian reports, this is McGee's method:

apparently the best way to ensure the first is to wrap the steaks in cling film then immerse them in warm water for 30 — 60 minutes before cooking.

Alternatively, you could just let the steaks come to room temperature on the counter before cooking. McGee's other tip, the article notes, is to flip often.

The warming method is at odds with the quick-freeze method of getting a perfect crust and cooking a steak straight from the freezer technique, but there's more than one path to better-tasting steaks.

How to cook the perfect steak [The Guardian]


    Steak should breath for about 30 mins in room temp first, when cooking only turn once the blood begins to come through the meat, leave for a few minutes, then plate up. what a treat.

    The room tempurature resting thing is a bit of a myth these days. Half an hour at room temperature will only increase the internal temperature of a steak (unless quite thin) by around 4 degrees, which is barely anything.
    That said, it sounds like he's describing a poor-mans Sous Vide steak, which is in itself a delicious way to cook steak.
    I personally leave my steak in the fridge uncovered and salted overnight. It dries the surface out excellently for crust formation, and I cook straight from the fridge as storing it on the bench beforehand cause it to sweat, negating the effort and point behind air drying it (which also concentrates the flavour). The idea is that by drying it, you remove most of the surface moisture which must be removed before caramelisation can begin in the pan.

    Flipping is also a hairy issue. I prefer to flip often, it's been giving me consistently better results since I started. It cooks more evenly and faster.

    The Foob Lab on Serious Eats is the best single resources I've found for tested meat cooking information:

      Kenji's my go-to on most food-science matters too. You can't often argue with his findings.

    Amusing - you have two articles contradicting each other

    ,,, leave the steak to warm / cook it cold?

    ... Turn it often / turn it once?

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