Masterclass: How to Cook the Perfect Steak
For many of us, cooking ‘the perfect steak’ in our own kitchen is an elusive thing. If you’ve ever tried making a steak dinner to impress your guests or even just your nearest and dearest, you’ll know it’s trickier than it sounds. So we decided to take the bull by horns (or, the ribs? The sirloin? I’ll stop now…) and ask our own chefs at The Square Kitchen – what’s the secret to cooking the perfect steak?
#1 – Choose your cut of meat
The many possible cuts of steak from a cow can be a little overwhelming if you don’t know what you’re after – but don’t let this put you off. Here at The Square, our favourite cuts to serve are rib eye and cote de boeuf: these are tender, flavoursome cuts from the ribs of the cow. Other safe choices you may have heard of include sirloin steaks, rump steaks, and T-bones (from the short loin).
Top tip – Our chefs also recommend using matured meat if you can get it – preferably 28-day aged, as it will significantly enhance the flavour. Our recommendation of a great local butchers to get your steak from is Ruby & White, on Whiteladies Road. Store in the fridge then bring to room temperature just before you’re ready to cook.
#2 – The recipe
Once you’ve sourced your steak and some ingredients to make your garnish (more on that later), it’s time to cook. Here’s our chefs Kyle and Matt’s fool-proof guide to cooking the perfect steak –
- Take the steak from the fridge and bring to room temperature
- Season both sides with sea salt ONLY (resist the temptation to use black pepper yet – it will only burn in the heat of the pan)
- Get your pan scorching hot and place the steak in the middle of the pan – this will ensure it gets a good colour and a crispy texture
- After 3 minutes, turn the steak over and baste with a knob of butter
- Cook for another few minutes depending on how rare you like your steak (when we tried this recipe, we found 2-3 further minutes was perfect for medium-rare).
- Remove from the pan and let the meat rest on a warm plate – this is ESSENTIAL as it allows the muscle fibres in the meat to relax. It’s the difference between a tender steak and a tough one!
- Season, garnish and serve.
Our marketing manager Esme gave this recipe a go at home, and was very happy with the results!
#3 The garnish
Whilst the steak is the star of the show, the garnish makes the meal. Everyone will have their own preferences, but our chefs can vouch that chips and a sauce are typically the crowd-pleaser. So, here’s how to make The Square Kitchen’s favourite triple-cooked chips, as well as recipes for the classic Bearnaise and Peppercorn sauces:
*A note on how to make your own, restaurant-quality jus:
Homemade meat stock is a great way to take your sauce from meh to excellent. If you have any chicken or meat bones and vegetables that are looking a bit on the sad side, pop them in a pan with a pint of water, and salt, pepper and any preferred herbs and spices you have in the cupboard. Bring to the boil and then leave for several hours on a low heat – or even overnight if you can (whilst your triple-cooked chips are in the fridge!). Then the next day, strain the liquid out into a pan and reduce a little further. Voila!
#4 Treat yourself
All this said about home cooking, sometimes it’s still lovely to pop out to a restaurant and have the professionals cook the perfect steak for you (and do away with the washing up as well). Why not take advantage of Steak Tuesdays at The Square Kitchen (our steak, fries and a salad for £12), or sample our incredible Cote-de-Boeuf. We serve it with a bottle of chilled Beaujolais-Villages, triple-cooked chips, wild mushrooms, roasted cherry tomatoes on the vine, and sauces. Book in now – we would love to welcome you to the Square Kitchen for a steak dinner soon!