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Food Tips: How to Cook the Perfect Steak

Food Tips: How to Cook the Perfect Steak

No matter the cut of meat you prefer, you must always pay close attention when cooking your beef. Timing is key when cooking steak and a few minutes is what makes the difference between rare and well done. This is one of the reasons I have put together this summary of tips to help you from beginning to end when cooking steak.

There are a lot of different ways to cook steak so you do not have to limit yourself.[1] And while you can enjoy your steak in a variety of delicious ways, these tips are going to be guiding you through properly frying your steak.

    Marinate The Steak

    When it comes to marinating steaks, you should keep in mind the most basic rule to follow, which is that you should always include an acidic liquid (such as vinegar or wine, so it can break down the muscle fibers in the meat cut), oil, and flavorings of your choice (herbs, spices, or sweeteners). You can buy pre-made marinade mixes in the store, but it’s better and healthier to make your own.

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    Here are tips on how to properly marinate your steak:

    1. Place olive oil, soy sauce, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, basil, garlic powder, pepper, and parsley in a blender. You can add garlic and hot pepper sauce if desired.
    2. Blend on high speed until thoroughly mixed for 30 seconds.
    3. Once you have properly mixed your marinade, it is ready to be used on your meat. Pour marinade over meat and make sure the marinade covers the entire meat.
    4. You can massage the meat to assist the penetration of the mixture, then cover, and refrigerate from 2 to 24 hours.

    There are lots of marinade recipes you can try depending on your preference, but the one above is a great one to have on hand.

    Selecting the Best Frying Pan

    If you are reading this, it is very likely that you are trying to find tips on how best to cook your steak. I recommend frying, although you can grill it if you prefer or even cook on a stove or oven.

    One of the commonly made mistakes when cooking steak is cooking it in the wrong choice of pan.

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    To fry your steak, you will need high temperatures so your pan of choice should be a thick-based, heavy-duty frying pan, ideally with a non-stick coating, which must be able to withstand the heat needed to fry the steak properly.[2] Cast iron griddles or skillets are the top choice and be sure to use the appropriate pan with enough room. However, if your pan isn’t big enough for all your steaks, don’t crowd the pan, cook them one or two at a time or in batches. This will let them rest as you cook the other batches, ensuring that they are all cooked properly.

    Choosing the Oil

    You should use groundnut oil to cook the steak. Groundnut oil has a mild flavor, which would make your steak more enjoyable. Some people like to use butter and you can use that if you prefer.

    When the pan heats up, add a splash of oil directly to the pan. Once the oil starts separating on the pan, it’s hot enough to add the steak. Make sure to add the steak when the oil is hot – if the oil is too cool when the steak is added, your steak could turn out under-browned and greasy.

    Dressing the Steak

    Moments before placing the steak into the pan, sprinkle some sea salt and black pepper onto a plate, then press the steak into the seasoning. However, if you are satisfied with just marinating, you can skip this step and go on to fry the steak.

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    How do you like it?

      • Blue-rare
      • Rare
      • Medium-rare
      • Medium
      • Medium-well
      • Well-done

      For a well-done steak, depending on the thickness of the steak, you should cook it for about 4-5 minutes on each side.

      Leave it to rest

      This is an important step. After cooking the steak, it should be left to rest at room temperature for at least five minutes.

      Serve

      Now you can serve up the steak. It can be accompanied with anything, including salads.

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      Bon appétit!

      Featured photo credit: shutterstock via shutterstock.com

      Reference

      More by this author

      Kyra Taylor

      Writer and Lawyer

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      Last Updated on March 13, 2019

      How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

      How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

      Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

      You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

      Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

      1. Work on the small tasks.

      When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

      Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

      2. Take a break from your work desk.

      Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

      Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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      3. Upgrade yourself

      Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

      The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

      4. Talk to a friend.

      Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

      Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

      5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

      If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

      Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

      Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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      6. Paint a vision to work towards.

      If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

      Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

      Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

      7. Read a book (or blog).

      The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

      Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

      Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

      8. Have a quick nap.

      If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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      9. Remember why you are doing this.

      Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

      What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

      10. Find some competition.

      Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

      Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

      11. Go exercise.

      Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

      Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

      As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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      Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

      12. Take a good break.

      Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

      Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

      Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

      Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

      More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

      Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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