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Recipe File: Grilled Porterhouse or T-Bone Steak
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Guest






PostPosted: Mon Feb 27, 2006 12:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

EEEEEK. One does not turn the steak repeatedly over and over and over a mesquite, hickory or lame gas fire.

Grease the grill first so it doesn't stick. Jeez.

Turn only once, the first side is your presentation side.

Or sear first on a cast iron pan for a minute or so and we're talking red hot pan.

Toss in to a 500 degree oven for about 10 minutes or less depending upon thickness.

Basic stuff man. Sorry for your 100 steaks, poor things. Steaks been done before.

Dr. Biggles / MeatHenge
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Guest






PostPosted: Mon Feb 27, 2006 12:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The "don't salt the meat before cooking it" warning is an urban legend. It makes sense logically, but in practice, it doesn't hold up. Any chef or cook who specializes in this area of cooking will tell you that salting the meat BEFORE it gets cooked is imperative to achieving a good flavor and nice, seasoned "crust" on the surface of the meat. I used to believe in this myth, but once I tried it myself, I realized just how wrong it is.

Even Bruce Aidells, the king of meat, strongly refutes the idea of post-salting.
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Guest






PostPosted: Mon Feb 27, 2006 12:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree Ė salt and peppering before grilling is essential. I have heard the theory that seasoning should not be done until searing to seal in the flavor & juices, but I donít believe this to be true. I have read, heard (on Food Network) and found through testing that seasoning BEFORE putting the meat to heat creates much better flavor as well as a nice crust to truly seal in the flavors and juices.

Regarding the comment on not using pepper when grilling due to carcinogens, two things. First, I have heard that everything grilled is full of carcinogens due to the fact that the food is cooked over burning coals, wood and/or gas. I have not heard that pepper specifically has anything to do with this. Even if pepper does increase the carcinogens, I say itís worth it. In my opinion, a steak without plenty of salt and freshly ground pepper applied before cooking will never be as good. And letís not forget, YOUíRE EATING A PORTERHOUSE Ė a healthy meal is not the objective!

I also agree on minimizing turning of the steak. The steak needs to sit in one spot for a period of time to develop that tasty crust.

As for cooking a steak beyond med rare, the first thing I would suggest is to avoid porterhouse. Itís simply not worth the money if youíre going to cook it that long. Fillet Mignon (one side of the Porterhouse) needs, more than any other steak, to be on the rare side since it has so little fat. If you want a more well-done steak, I would suggest a thinner and fattier cut which will allow you to cook it through w/o totally drying it out (ribeye or thinner strip steak for example).

Also, great site!
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Guest






PostPosted: Mon Feb 27, 2006 12:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Always allow your steak to come to room temperature before grilling.
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Guest






PostPosted: Mon Feb 27, 2006 12:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The less you flip the steak the better. If you insist on going past medium rare become a vegan and save the beef for us.
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Guest






PostPosted: Mon Feb 27, 2006 12:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree, too much flipping makes the meat tougher. You should only flip it once. I don't know why exactly but my theory is that it has something to do with heating up and cooling down more than once (the side away from the flame cools down somewhat).
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Guest






PostPosted: Mon Feb 27, 2006 12:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I remember from my undergraduate organic chemistry textbook that, indeed, black pepper contains 32 known carcinogens (2nd ed by Bruice). You don't have to cook black pepper to produce carcinogens. This knowledge has never stopped me from eating black pepper in excess.

The carcinogens intrinsically produced in grilling are mainly free radicals that are produced whenever you heat a hydrocarbon (i.e. butter, fat, burnt-sugar, etc.) to high temperatures. This is why french fries are so incredibly unhealthy: not only are they high in fat but they are also loaded with free radicals.

Fortunately for us, there are antioxidants that bind to free radicals and render them harmless. Anthocyanin, the pigment responsible for most of the red in fruits and vegetables, is just one such antioxidant. My favorite source of anthocyanin just happens to go excellently with steak: red wine.

Cheers!
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R Westin
Guest





PostPosted: Mon Feb 27, 2006 12:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Have just read through the methods of grillin a Porterhouse Steak. Seems simple enough. Those that have written in seem to be suffering from, "Beating an old horse to death" syndrome. Surely they're smarter than they're letting on. A little common sense goes a long way...in cooking too!!!
R. Westin-Frisco, Texas
Yes, Texans know how to grill. It's genetic!
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Guest






PostPosted: Mon Feb 27, 2006 12:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I really appreciate your website and many suggestions. Once again tonight I attempted grilling three nice porterhouses that had plenty of marbling. Since my family prefers their meat medium well, it has been a real challenge for me. I've tried the thermometer it doesn't work for me. I've got three in my house cause I thought I was buying bad themometers. I grilled them about five minutes on each side and then brought them inside to finish them in the pan like it was suggested. I read a good temp for medium well is 165. Thank God I didn't wait for the thermometer to read that. I had trouble getting them up to 140. They were well done at 140. They were about 1 inch thick. I would like to know about how long to grill a 1 inch thick porterhouses or t-bones. It would be helpful to me to know how many minutes per 1/2 inch of thickness to acheive medium well results. Also, after you do the two minute sear, do you leave the lid up. My steaks seem dryer when I leave the lid up. Also, when you are grilling more than one steak do you have to grill them longer. Please advise.
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Guest






PostPosted: Mon Feb 27, 2006 12:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The smaller side is always or almost always the filet on a steak with a "T" bone. I prefer my steak rare, even being a microbiologist. I have found that certain things cook fine or better if they are flipped often, depends on what it is and what you want to accomplish (I flip marinated chicken breasts quite often, coating more sauce on them as I do, very yummy). I also put garlic and onion powders on my steak. Seasoning post cooking produces an inferior product, I accidentally forgot to season first when I was new to cooking and even after drowning it in seasonings afterwards it did not fix the blandness.

Also not an engineer but my lab is populated by them and I am the daughter of one =).
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Guest






PostPosted: Mon Feb 27, 2006 12:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Engineering is an exact science based on mis-information from Instrumentation. I made a block of wood for use in stores to get the exact steak thickness I want. That is, my small block of wood is exactly 1 1/2 inches in length (used for home cooking) by 1 3/8 inches in width (used for commercial purposes). I ask my butcher (I reside in Mexico) to set his saw per my block and receive uniform pieces of (frozen) meat I can cook to perfection.
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JudithKD
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 05, 2006 10:42 pm    Post subject: porterhouse steaks Reply with quote

I'm not going to comment on the cooking, we just grill ours til they look done.

Re: the salt/pepper thing. I rub the meat with Maggi, a salty, German liquid seasoning. I don't think it would help form a "crust" though. And I wouldn't add pepper, DH is much fonder of pepper than I am. I'm much fonder of salt than he is. So, the compromise is to rub a little Maggi on the steak and grill it and we season our own. I've never noticed it hurting anything taste or texture wise. But then, I've never heard that salting or not salting it did before grilling did anything, either.

Re: the filet/NY structure of a Porterhouse. If you really want to grill a bunch of NY steaks (and I've had to a time or two) every once in a blue moon Porterhouse steaks are cheaper. You can remove the filet (I cubed it and put it in the freezer, to be Stroganoff later.) and grill the NY steaks. You don't have the worry about the two textures and cooking times of the meat that way. And, for a party, it makes it much easier!

jkd
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foryoulifessake
Guest





PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2006 8:04 pm    Post subject: FOR YOU LIFE'S SAKE,,DO THIS!!!! Reply with quote

Wink Just in time for the barbecue season! By using this marinade you dramatically reduce the carcinogens which occur when barbecuing.
ANTI-CANCER MARINADE FOR BARBECUE
(From Lawrence Livermoore Labs)
6 T. olive oil
4 T. cider vinegar
4 T. lemon juice
1/2 c. brown sugar
3 T. grainy mustard
3 medium cloves garlic, crushed
1 1/2 t. salt
Mix all ingredients together in a glass bowl. Put meat in re-sealable plastic bag. Cover completely with marinade and refrigerate for at least 4 hours to overnight. Barbecue as usual.
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guest
Guest





PostPosted: Fri May 05, 2006 8:57 pm    Post subject: Question Reply with quote

Hello,

Does anyone have any tips as to what makes a steak tender on the grill? My husband and I seem to get it hit and miss and I haven't been able to isolate what makes the steak perfect when it turns out so. We recently took some medium thickness steaks and cooked them on WHITE coals, and they turned out absolutely perfectly - never had a better steak in my life. We did the same thing the next time, and it wasn't nearly the same. The only thing I could see we did differently was that the steak was thin the second time.

Comments?

Emily
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Michael Chu



Joined: 10 May 2005
Posts: 1617
Location: Austin, TX (USA)

PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 7:21 am    Post subject: Re: Question Reply with quote

guest wrote:
Does anyone have any tips as to what makes a steak tender on the grill? My husband and I seem to get it hit and miss and I haven't been able to isolate what makes the steak perfect when it turns out so. We recently took some medium thickness steaks and cooked them on WHITE coals, and they turned out absolutely perfectly - never had a better steak in my life. We did the same thing the next time, and it wasn't nearly the same. The only thing I could see we did differently was that the steak was thin the second time.

This is a topic that could easily take a couple articles to cover the bare essentials - but I'll try to see if I can summarize the key useful info.

It depends on a variety of factors, but probably the most important factors are the cut, the quality of the cut, and the temperature to which the cut has been cooked (in no particular order).

Cuts from the back are generally more tender because the muscles have been used less. A couple examples are: tenderloin (including the filet), top loin (such as New York strip), and rib (like a rib-eye or delmonico steak). A rib-eye steak has more intramuscular fat than a filet and this will also affect the tenderness and flavor. A filet (the choicest cuts from the tenderloin) is almost always the least used part of the least used muscle and is therefore very tender. However, it doesn't contain a lot of intramuscular fat, so it tends to have a less beefy flavor than other cuts. Another factor of having less fat is that when cooked to the point where the proteins tighten up, there isn't any fat to melt into the steak and lubricate it, so you lose a key factor in how tender the meat feels to your mouth when cooked beyond rare. The rib-eye has more intramuscular fat (the distribution of which is referred to as marbling) and so tends to have more flavor and a more tender consistency when overcooked (i.e. beyond medium-rare).

The quality of the meat is determined by three main factors - the age of the cattle when slaughtered, the amount and distribution of intramuscular fat, and the aging process of the meat. I will skip the first factor (almost all cuts you will be buying are from young cattle - older cattle produces meat for canning, hamburgers, and commercial meats) and briefly explain the other two. The marbling is important because of the affect of fat as it melts and spreads through the cut during the cooking process. It brings flavor and a perceived sense of tenderness. The more marbling, the higher the quality of beef and the higher the USDA grade (Prime has more marbling than Choice which in turn has more then Select). Be aware that many popular supermarkets have recently taken to branding their beef (usually USDA Select) to bolster sales of lower cost cuts at a higher price point. It's probably best to examine your steaks and look for ample amount of white flecks of fat dispersed liberally throughout the cut than follow fancy sounding supermarket labelling. The aging process also serves to tenderize beef. Generally supermarket beef is wet aged (sealed in a vacuum bag and refrigerated for a couple weeks) to allow the natural enzymes to begin decomposition of the tough proteins - naturally tenderizing the beef. In the U.S. almost all beef sold is wet aged to provide tender beef. Some places will dry age (sometimes they will wet age and follow it by dry aging) where the beef is not vacuum packed and is hung in a refrigerated compartment or room where humidity and temperature are controlled to allow the enzymes to do their work without the meat going bad. This is typically done for about 14 days for more supermarket dry aged beef (if you can find a market that carries it) to up to 1-2 months depending on how lucky you are and how much you are willing to pay. Dry aging yields a superior flavor (dry aging enhances the flavor of beef while wet aging does not) and tenderizes effectively. Unfortunately dry aging takes up space and results in a significant loss in edible beef as the exterior of the cut drys during aging and must be cut away by the butcher before sale. Therefore, dry aged beef is more expensive - but more flavorful and usually more tender than the standard wet aged beef.

Finally, we come to the cooking part. After selecting a cut that maximizes your chances of tenderness (let's say a USDA Prime filet or rib-eye that has been dry-aged for 3 weeks), you'll want to make sure you don't overcook it. An accurate and fast meat thermometer (such as a ThermaPen) is a vital tool for hitting the exact same temperature window every time because (unless you cook steaks everyday) it's difficult to tell how fast the temperature is rising in a steak as your cooking because, between two different meals, your steaks may be a different width or shape or the starting temperature may be drastically different... anyway, what temperature are we aiming for to achieve maximum tenderness? I'd say 125°F at the center. At this point, the proteins have just begun to tighten and form the tell tale striations that reveal that water has just begun to be squeezed out. Further cooking will cause the muscle fibers to continue to tighten and more and more water and juices will be lost. Cuts with more intramuscular fat will help mitigate the loss of tenderness. Most people's tastes tend to lean toward a more cooked steak at around 135-140&176;F - but the steak has become noticably less tender at this point - which is considered medium-rare to medium. Thicker steaks make it easier to sear the outside forming a brown crust while the inside doesn't overcook. Steaks thinner than 2-in. often have a tendency of being unpredictable and disappointing (either the outside is perfect and the inside overcooked or the inside perfect and the outside laking the rich, brown crust that is the only reason that makes a steak better than a slow roast).

To accomplish a 125°F, you should grill on the high heat. With a gas grill, that's basically as much heat as you can muster. On a charcoal grill, build a two level fire with a generous amount of lump charcoal. When the initial fire has burned down a bit, slap the steak down and leave it for five minutes. Using tongs, flip the steak over and leave it again for five minutes. Pick up the steak with tongs, insert the instant read thermometer from the side (through the part of the steak that is perpendicular to the grill) and measure the middle of the largest muscle of the steak (the coldest part). Take it off the grill to rest once it hits 110°F. If it hasn't hit 110°F, place the steak on the cooler part of the grill and check again at regular intervals (every 30 to 60 seconds). Keeping your steaks refrigerated until grill time also helps as extra insurance that you won't run past the designated temperature as you sear the outside. Cover the steak with a tent made of aluminum foil and wait ten to fifteen minutes. The unevenly heated steak (very hot on the outside, 110°F on the inside) will even out the temperature a bit, causing the interior to warm up to about 120-125°F - perfect.
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