You might think that cooking steaks is pretty straightforward, even if there is an art to it. But like many forms of cooking, getting a perfectly cooked steak is a journey that can take many forms. There are actually many ways to cook a steak, even beyond the traditional methods of grilling, roasting, or pan-frying. So what are the ways that you can push your culinary know-how when it comes to cooking a great steak?
Cooking It on Coals
If you want to try something really old-school, try cooking your steak directly on coals. For grilling like this, you wouldn’t want to use briquettes. Instead, use regular, clean coal. It won’t leave an odd flavor in your steak. What it will do is impart a layered, intense flavor. Cooking on coals requires being focused and present. You will need to flip the steak every few minutes. With proper monitoring, it will become ultra-crispy on the outside and smoky and juicy on the inside.
Smoking It at Home
If you’ve ever had a really good barbecue, you know what effect smoke can have on meat. There is a reason that everyone loves classic smoked meats like brisket. But believe it or not, you can actually smoke your own steak right in your own home.
The perfect steak for smoking is a bigger, thicker steak. You may also want to prepare a marinade for your steak. Grilling and smoking purists will say that this is the wrong way to go about it, but smoking steaks can be tricky. It can be a bit of a battle to keep the moisture in the meat. You want to get that smoky flavour while keeping a tender, soft consistency. Even though it can be a challenge, it is not impossible — and getting it perfect is worth the effort.
Cooking a Shovel Steak
The term “shovel steak” is not a manner of speech. This delicious, crispy steak earns its name because it is literally cooked on a shovel. Cooking on an open fire can make you feel primitive, but there is nothing more delicious than a perfectly cooked steak eaten flame-side. To cook a shovel steak, build your campfire, adding enough wood to keep it piping hot. Season your steak with whatever rub or marinade you like. Then preheat your shovel by laying it on the flames for about five minutes.
When the shovel is hot, lay your steak on it and put it directly into the flames. This essentially works like frying it in a pan. However, the extra-hot temperature and direct flame exposure give it a unique flavor and an excellent sear on the outside. When done right, shovel steaks can be crispy on the exterior and tender and juicy in the middle.
If you love to experiment with cooking steak, challenge yourself to try something new this summer. And when you’ve had your fill of the great outdoors, visit Rib’N Reef for our own delicious specialty steaks.