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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 November 19, 2019

      20 Time Management Tips to Super Boost Your Productivity

      20 Time Management Tips to Super Boost Your Productivity

      Are you usually punctual or late? Do you finish things within the time you stipulate? Do you hand in your reports/work on time? Are you able to accomplish what you want to do before deadlines? Are you a good time manager?

      If your answer is “no” to any of the questions above, that means you’re not managing your time as well as you want. Here are 20 time management tips to help you manage time better:

      1. Create a Daily Plan

      Plan your day before it unfolds. Do it in the morning or even better, the night before you sleep. The plan gives you a good overview of how the day will pan out. That way, you don’t get caught off guard. Your job for the day is to stick to the plan as best as possible.

      2. Peg a Time Limit to Each Task

      Be clear that you need to finish X task by 10am, Y task by 3pm, and Z item by 5:30pm. This prevents your work from dragging on and eating into time reserved for other activities.

      3. Use a Calendar

      Having a calendar is the most fundamental step to managing your daily activities. If you use outlook or lotus notes, calendar come as part of your mailing software.

      I use it. It’s even better if you can sync your calendar to your mobile phone and other hardwares you use – that way, you can access your schedule no matter where you are. Here’re the 10 Best Calendar Apps to Stay on Track .

      Find out more tips about how to use calendar for better time management here: How to Use a Calendar to Create Time and Space

      4. Use an Organizer

      An organizer helps you to be on top of everything in your life. It’s your central tool to organize information, to-do lists, projects, and other miscellaneous items.

      These Top 15 Time Management Apps and Tools can help you organize better, pick one that fits your needs.

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      5. Know Your Deadlines

      When do you need to finish your tasks? Mark the deadlines out clearly in your calendar and organizer so you know when you need to finish them.

      But make sure you don’t make these 10 Common Mistakes When Setting Deadlines.

      6. Learn to Say “No”

      Don’t take on more than you can handle. For the distractions that come in when you’re doing other things, give a firm no. Or defer it to a later period.

      Leo Babauta, the founder of Zen Habits has some great insights on how to say no: The Gentle Art of Saying No

      7. Target to Be Early

      When you target to be on time, you’ll either be on time or late. Most of the times you’ll be late. However, if you target to be early, you’ll most likely be on time.

      For appointments, strive to be early. For your deadlines, submit them earlier than required.

      Learn from these tips about how to prepare yourself to be early, instead of just in time.

      8. Time Box Your Activities

      This means restricting your work to X amount of time. Why time boxing is good for you? Here’re 10 reasons why you should start time-boxing.

      You can also read more about how to do time boxing here: #5 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity.

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      9. Have a Clock Visibly Placed Before You

      Sometimes we are so engrossed in our work that we lose track of time. Having a huge clock in front of you will keep you aware of the time at the moment.

      10. Set Reminders 15 Minutes Before

      Most calendars have a reminder function. If you have an important meeting to attend, set that alarm 15 minutes before.

      You can learn more about how reminders help you remember everything in this article: The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder That Works)

      11. Focus

      Are you multi-tasking so much that you’re just not getting anything done? If so, focus on just one key task at one time. Multitasking is bad for you.

      Close off all the applications you aren’t using. Close off the tabs in your browser that are taking away your attention. Focus solely on what you’re doing. You’ll be more efficient that way.

      Lifehack’s CEO has written a definitive guide on how to focus, learn the tips: How to Focus and Maximize Your Productivity (the Definitive Guide)

      12. Block out Distractions

      What’s distracting you in your work? Instant messages? Phone ringing? Text messages popping in?

      I hardly ever use chat nowadays. The only times when I log on is when I’m not intending to do any work. Otherwise it gets very distracting.

      When I’m doing important work, I also switch off my phone. Calls during this time are recorded and I contact them afterward if it’s something important. This helps me concentrate better.

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      Find more tips on how to minimize distractions to achieve more in How to Minimize Distraction to Get Things Done

      13. Track Your Time Spent

      When you start to track your time, you’re more aware of how you spend your time. For example, you can set a simple countdown timer to make sure that you finish a task within a period of time, say 30 minutes or 1 hour. The time pressure can push you to stay focused and work more efficiently.

      You can find more time tracking apps here and pick one that works for you.

      14. Don’t Fuss About Unimportant Details

      You’re never get everything done in exactly the way you want. Trying to do so is being ineffective.

      Trying to be perfect does you more harm than good, learn here about how perfectionism kills your productivity and how to ditch the perfectionism mindset.

      15. Prioritize

      Since you can’t do everything, learn to prioritize the important and let go of the rest.

      Apply the 80/20 principle which is a key principle in prioritization. You can also take up this technique to prioritize everything on your plate: How to Prioritize Right in 10 Minutes and Work 10X Faster

      16. Delegate

      If there are things that can be better done by others or things that are not so important, consider delegating. This takes a load off and you can focus on the important tasks.

      When you delegate some of your work, you free up your time and achieve more. Learn about how to effectively delegate works in this guide: How to Delegate Work (the Definitive Guide for Successful Leaders)

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      17. Batch Similar Tasks Together

      For related work, batch them together.

      For example, my work can be categorized into these core groups:

      1. writing (articles, my upcoming book)
      2. coaching
      3. workshop development
      4. business development
      5. administrative

      I batch all the related tasks together so there’s synergy. If I need to make calls, I allocate a time slot to make all my calls. It really streamlines the process.

      18. Eliminate Your Time Wasters

      What takes your time away your work? Facebook? Twitter? Email checking? Stop checking them so often.

      One thing you can do is make it hard to check them – remove them from your browser quick links / bookmarks and stuff them in a hard to access bookmarks folder. Replace your browser bookmarks with important work-related sites.

      While you’ll still checking FB/Twitter no doubt, you’ll find it’s a lower frequency than before.

      19. Cut off When You Need To

      The number one reason why things overrun is because you don’t cut off when you have to.

      Don’t be afraid to intercept in meetings or draw a line to cut-off. Otherwise, there’s never going to be an end and you’ll just eat into the time for later.

      20. Leave Buffer Time In-Between

      Don’t pack everything closely together. Leave a 5-10 minute buffer time in between each tasks. This helps you wrap up the previous task and start off on the next one.

      More Time Management Techniques

      Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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