Are you a meat lover? Do your mouths get watery just by hearing the word “beef”! Well, you are not alone. Most of the people in the world like meat.
It’s delicious no matter how you cook it. Steaks bring out the raw taste of the meat. Nothing can beat the taste of a tender piece of yummy juicy beef steak.
But did you notice your steak is never as good as the one you eat at a fancy restaurant? Even if you have got their secret recipe and you followed everything perfectly, the steak does not turn out to be as good as them.
What sorcery are they using? Well, few simple things seem unimportant but can entirely change the quality of your home-cooked steak.
Everyone can’t eat at those expensive places frequently. So, today we will share one of the most guarded secrets of cooking yummy steaks.
Cutting against grain
Meat mainly consists of muscle fibers. They are elastic and tough. This muscle fiber makes meat chewy and tough. When you cut the meat, you must have to cut it against the grain (meat fibers). It is like we cut our hair horizontally.
You must cut your meat horizontally to the muscle fiber or the grain. These grains’ direction can be easily determined on cooked meat, but you can also see them on raw meat as well with a little touch and look. You can check this video.
Why is it important?
Your meat will get super chewy if you fail to cut it against the grain. It will ruin the taste of your steak. You may feel like chewing a piece of rubber after some time and your mouth will start to hurt from all that chewing. But if you cut the meat against the grain, it will significantly reduce the length of the muscle fiber and make it easier to chew.
Moreover, the salt and spice will also get inside those cuts and get absorbed in the meat more deeply and make the steak taste better. Steaks that are cut perfectly against the grain will retain more juice hence make the steak yummier.
Isn’t it too much to put so much effort into the grain?
We know what you are thinking. So, we collected over 20 raw pieces of steak meat. Its time for real-life experiments. We gave 10 pieces of steak meat to a group for cooking the meat and told them not to cut against the grain and cook it in the best possible way they can.
We also did the same with the other 10 pieces but told them to perfectly cut it against the grain and grill it. It took 6 hours to finish their cooking and our judges were blindfolded. They tasted from every steak accordingly. And the result was not surprising.
Every grain cut steak scored better. Later we asked them what the reason was. They replied that these grains cut meat tasted much better and easier to chew. The result was what we expected. Grain cut meat retained more moisture and was tastier for absorbing more spices.
Meat slice thickness
Thick slices of meats may look cool and yummy on TV but in truth, the thinner the slice is the tastier it gets. Spice and the grill of heat cannot go too deep if the meat is too thick. Thin meats absorb more spices and the salt goes deeper making it much tastier. So, while cooking tries to keep the slices thin. It will also get grilled faster.
Freeze your meat before cutting
You can’t cut frozen meat. And we are not asking you to do something like that. What we are asking you is to freeze the meat till it remains soft and then cut it.
Or warm up your frozen meat till it becomes soft but still cold. In our real-life experiment, we saw it takes about 45 minutes to freeze a piece of meat to make it cold but not hard. It will help you to cut the meat easily. Slicing thinner pieces will be much easier.
Choosing the knife
Choosing the perfect knife is very important for making your perfect slice of steak. As muscle fibers are strong and elastic, you will need a very sharp knife. But that’s not the end of the story. Regular knives and meat cutting knives are slightly different.
We suggest you use the best meat cutting knives recommended by certified professionals. A good meat cutting knife will be ergonomically designed. It will fit in your grip perfectly. It will be comfortable to hold. It will be around 10 inches in length. One more important thing to notice is, its blade will be slightly flexible yet hard.
Grass-Fed or Grain-Fed
If you mess up your steak and do not grill it properly it will taste bad whether it is from a grass-fed or grain-fed animal. Normally grass-fed meats taste better and are more tender. But they are more expensive. On the other hand, grain-fed meats are normally chewier.
But in the hand of a good chef both will taste the same. The difference in taste in both types of meat is identical. So we suggest you get grain-fed meat as long as you are willing to give it enough time to make it tender.
What we shared today may not sound like much, but we can guarantee that it will make your steak taste much better. Everyone can cook and grill but it’s the little things gained from years of experience that make steak taste different.