How to Cook Steak
Cooking steak is really fast and relatively easy. After all, you can’t cook the steak for too long or it will overcook and the meat will become tough. It is useful to learn to cook steak because it is cheaper and you have full control over the degree the steak is cooked (sometimes I order medium well done and I get well done or worse, overcooked). At home, whenever we crave for steak, I just heat up the griddle pan, season the steak with salt and pepper just before cooking, and grill it for a few minutes each side. This is easy gourmet meal in the comfort of your home, prepared in no time at all.
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- Season the steak with salt and pepper just before cooking. If you salt it earlier and leave it for a while, the salt will draw out the juices.
- Bring the steak to room temperature before cooking. If you kept the steak in the fridge, bring it out to rest at room temperature at least half an hour before cooking.
- You can use herbs such as rosemary or thyme to go with the steak if you like. You can also purchase bottled steak herbs mix.
- Use thick cuts of meat. Ideally, the steak should be at least 3/4 inch thick. Anything thinner than that will usually result in overcooked and tough meat.
- If you want beautiful grill marks on the steak, use a griddle pan. Otherwise, you can use a normal pan.
- Heat up the pan till very hot before placing the steak on it. Then reduce the heat to medium high.
- When cooking, turn the steak over once using a pair of kitchen tongs. Do not keep flipping and turning the steak as it is cooking.
- After cooking, let the steak “relax” for a few minutes in a plate before serving so that the juices will disperse throughout the steak and it will be juicy.
My steak cooking time reference
This is based on my own observations. It may vary depending on the type of pan, the temperature and the cut used, so adjust accordingly for your own cooking.
- It does not matter how much the steak weigh, what matters is the thickness of the meat. The thicker it is, the more time needed to cook it.
- For 3/4 inch thick steak, I grill (each side) for about 2 minutes for medium rare; add 1 minute for medium, add 2 minutes for medium well done, and add 3 minutes for well done, subtract 1 minute for rare.
- Based on the above calculations, for each increase in steak thickness by 1/4 inch, add another half to one minute to the above timings.
- 1 serving of steak (I’m using the ribeye cut here)
- olive oil
- sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper
- herbs of your choice (optional)
1. Brush the steak with some oil and season with salt, pepper and herbs (optional) to taste just before cooking.
2. Heat the griddle pan on high heat till very hot. Place the steak onto the hot pan (you should hear a sizzling sound if the pan is hot enough) and reduce the heat to medium high.
3. Cook the meat based on the cooking times reference above. For example, for my steak which is 3/4 inch thick, I cook the meat on one side first for 3 minutes, then I flip over to the other side to cook for another 4 minutes. This is for medium.
4. Place the steak on a plate and let it rest for a few minutes before serving.