The key to making a good steak is choosing a good cut of meat. Last night I made this juicy ribeye steak. Down below, I will share with you my tips for choosing the best quality meat. This boneless ribeye is full of marbling which, in my opinion, makes for a great steak.
Here I will give you a few facts on four of my favorites cuts, and I hope this will help you choose the right cut of steak.
Tenderloin is also known as Filet Mignon.
I like this name much better; it sounds fancier. Filet mignon is a boneless and one of the most expensive cuts of steak. The meat is lean, tender, and smaller than most steaks. For this reason, they are usually cut thick. The best way to cook filet mignon is to sear the meat first, then finalize the oven’s cooking process. This cut has a buttery taste and definitely worth buying.
As the name implies, it is a bone-in cut. With the T-bone, you get two for the price of one. You get a small section of the tenderloin (Filet Mignon) which is very tender and buttery, and the other part is the juicy New York strip steak. This cut has lots of fat that creates a nice crust during the searing process.
New York Strip:
It’s usually a boneless cut, and it has fat edges. This cut is tender, though not as tender as filet mignon or ribeye. It’s best when cooked in high heat, like in a cast iron.
The rib-eye steak is a thick cut of meat. You can get it boneless or bone-in. This type of cut has a great amount of marbling, making it juicy and flavorful. What’s marbling, you may ask? Marbling is the white fat you see on the inside of the meat. This fat helps you determine the quality of the meat. The more marbling, the better the flavors.
There are different levels of quality when choosing a Steak:
There is the USDA Prime, Select, Choice, and the Standard, the supermarket brand. I always recommend USDA Prime. It is a little more expensive, but it’s better quality and more marbling. My second suggestion would be Choice. I usually buy my steaks certified Angus. You can find it at Aldi for a low price.
To determine the amount of time you cook a Steak, consider your preferred doneness. This is the guide I follow when deciding how long to cook a steak.
Rare: Temperature of 120- 130 F (50-55 C) To cook a steak, rare means the steak is seared on the outside, but the inside of the steak stays at 120-130 F. The steak should feel soft and bouncy and very little resistance when pushing into it. A type of cut that is ideal for this is tenderloins, as this type of steak is lean and tender.
Medium Rare: Temperature of 130- 135 F ( 55-57 C) This is the most recommended doneness to cook a juicy steak. It’s prevalent among professional chefs and steaks aficionados. A medium-rare steak is red in the center with some shades of pink. It feels slightly soft to the touch. Any cut will do to cook medium-rare, although a filet mignon or a Ribeye are my favorites!
Medium: Temperature of 140- 150 F (60-65 C). When you’re cooking your steak at this temperature, the cut is no longer red in the center, but there is a pink color throughout. It feels fairly firm and springy. This is because of the higher temperature, there is moisture loss, but the steak tastes very flavorful despite this.
Medium Well: Temperature of 155-165 F (65-74 C). Similar to how a medium steak is cooked but perhaps much less tender due to the moisture loss. You still will see some pinkness at this temperature.
Well Done: Temperature 170 F (77 C) or even higher. Cooked throughout the entire steak leaving it brown in color. The meat feels very firm to the touch. At this temperature, you risk drying the meat.
*Now, by no means am I presenting myself to you as a professional chef; I want to share a few tips that I find helpful when cooking a Steak; if you have any tips on cooking the best steak, please share with me in the comment section!
I hope this post is helpful to you, and let me know in the comment section which is your favorite steak cut. I will definitely bring you more recipes using different types of cuts!
Until the next one…