Take the 1 ½ inches steak at least an hour before cooking and let it defrost naturally until it is at room temperature. This prescribed thickness is chosen because it is just the right one to give the steak that char once grilled. The best steaks to grill are; Porterhouse, T-Bone or Strip Steak. Be careful with leaving the steak out for too long might give you bad results, taking it directly from the freezer to the fire will give even worse results. Give steak a slight sprinkle of coarse salt on both sides while it is sitting, this will help retain all the juicy bits. From there you can add any spices and black pepper, you may have a selection of fine to coarse bits, then salt again.
The next steps:
- Start cleaning the grill and oil it with a neutral flavored or vegetable oil.
There may have been some remnants of grease from when you last used it, brush off any bits of food on the cooking grates using a paper towel.
Get natural charcoal lumps that came from a tree, for example, oak, and stay away from anything that will leave your food smelling like chemicals. It is okay to go full blast on the heat at this point but be ready to reduce this heat if it does not die down before the meat is ready for grilling. Make sure the grilling grates are 4 inches above the coal. One side of the grill should have medium heat to keep the steak warm and crispy while you are still grilling more.
Question: How do I know that the cooking temperatures are correct?
Answer: You should not be able to hold your hand 2 inches from the grill for more than 2 minutes.
Place the steak on the grill and wait until it is cooked on one side before you flip it to cook the other side. Flipping it around may look cool and keep you busy on your chef task but it just would not achieve the best results, and you do not want to end up releasing all the tasty juices to the flames. Besides, you can use all the free time between flipping to spend time with your guests or prepare vegetables to go with the steak. You can let the meat rest for 5 minutes then check if it’s cooked by touching it with a finger- cooked meat feels firm.
Medium meat will spring back at your touch, the medium rare meat will resist, rare meat should be soft and raw meat should be almost squishy. If you are not good at this, as a last resort you can make a little cut on the corner of the steak to see if it’s cooked. When you have achieved the level desired, let the meat rest for not more than 10 minutes to allow distribution of flavor throughout the steak.
There are 2 golden rules;
- Heat must remain constant throughout the whole process ( Use a thermometer if need be, maintain 125 degrees)
- Do not flip the steak constantly, poke it, move it about and try not to cut it. ( As tempting as it might be, it’s a trap)
- Test for touch for feeling if the meat is properly cooked or not
- Thick steak normally continues cooking even after removing it from the grill, take this into consideration
- Grilling happens in a space of a few minutes, not hours.
- If you like, you can salt the steak on one side, let it cook then salt and flip it to cook the other side
- You can lower heat by raising the heat slightly or reduce coals to the other side of the grill.
- Yes, you only need salt and pepper for the perfect stake
- To achieve a rare quality take, remove it after 3 minutes and for a medium rare, remove it from the grill after 4 minutes
- A timer always comes in handy