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Tied to a Steak

The weather is finally good enough here in Yr Fthlfl Blggr land that it's time to uncover the trusty vintage Weber grill. In other words, wake it from its winter slumber and cook.

Whoo hoo.

For our first grilling of the year, we have a killer 2.8 pound sirloin, about 1 1/2 inches thick. Choo might say to me, "Dude, where choo get such a steak?"

I say to choo, "I get dem at Snider's. Their meat is amazing." And so it is. The Weber is about 20 inches across, so you can see this is One Big Mama. Snider's calls this cut "King Henry." I call it good eatin.

For this type of steak, I like to marinate it, then cook it by searing both sides over a very high heat, then move it to a cooler part of the grill and cook indirectly for 30-40 minutes or until desired doneness is reached.

Here's what we do: we marinate de steak in a mixture of beer (22 oz bottle), 1 cup of vegetable oil, 2 tbsp lemon juice, 1 tbsp prepared horseradish, 2 tsp red cayenne pepper, 1 tsp salt. The recipe comes from Justin Wilson's "Outside Cooking With Inside Help." I mixed the marinade in a food processor, poked some holes in the steak with a fork, and let the steak sit in the marinade in a glass dish for about 5 hours in the refrigerator. Overnight is acceptable too, and is even better.

I also put on a rub (optional). You can make up your own or use a commercial one. Lots of 'em out there nowadays.

Den ve heat ze far up to hot hot hot. You can see how hot. Get the coals going, dump em in the grill and let sit for 5-7 minutes and choo are ready. Put de grill on the Weber right after you dumped the coals so it will be hot also. You can see the coals in a pile on one side of the grill, with the other side being 'cooler' for the indirect part of the cooking.

Then oil the grill. If you oil your grill, stuff won't stick, and it will be easy to clean. Use a grill cleaning brush as you see me doing here, before you oil. If you do this religiously ("Oh Father, please help keep my grill clean..."), you will be One Happy Camper and rarely will you have to clean burned-on stuff off your grill.

To oil, I use a paper towel folded into a pad. Dip the pad into vegetable oil (olive is ok too, but is muy expensivo for this use), and, using tongs, oil the grill.

Then, put your meat on de grill! I like to get grill marks when possible; the clean grill and the oil and heat make this possible. Put yer steak at a 45 degree angle to the bars in the grill. Give it a few minutes (not too much) and check to see how it's progressing. When the first set of marks look good, turn the steak 90 degress (same side down) and repeat so you have a cross-hatch.

This one came out ok, not the best, but passable.

Then flip the meat over - you don't have to rotate unless you want/need grill marks on both sides.

After both sides are seared, move the meat to the cooler side of the grill and cover it. You want to lower the heat a bit, so I close the vent about halfway. Your mileage may vary. This ain't brain science, just use your instincts.

The main thing to remember for a steak this thick is that you cannot cook it over direct heat successfully. If you do that, the outside will be charred and the inside still raw. This is why we use a combination of direct and indirect heat. For thinner (normal) steaks, we use direct for the whole cooking time.

By the time we cover it, with both sides seared, it's staring to Look Pretty Good Indeed. You probably want to resist the temptation to cut a hunk off at this point cause it's still raw inside.

Cook the steak covered for 30-40 minutes. I checked mine at about 20 minutes and it read about 110 on an instant-read thermometer. As an aside, I highly recommend one of these - it takes a lot of the guesswork out of cooking meat. I'm shooting for about 135 or so, which is a rare to medium rare. After it gets there, I let it sit on a plate loosely covered with foil for about 10 minutes. The steak will continue to cook, will get up to a medium rare, and it will be easy to slice after the juices settle. If you like your steak less or more done, adjust to suit. It took a total of about 40 minutes, covered, to get to about 135.

I have a hysterical picture of my thermometer - it looks bigger than the steak! The dial on the thermometer is about an inch across, but at this angle it looks huge. The temp is just where I want it. I took readings right in the middle halfway down so this is looking real good.

After it sits, we cut it up and EAT! This one wound up just a touch more done than I wanted, but it's good eating regardless. I probably should have flipped it halfway through the cooking, but I was trying to keep my grill marks on the one side. You can see how that side is a bit rarer than the other.


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