Is anyone interested in learning about different types of steak with us?
I was thinking it might be fun to share some of our adventures as J and I learn about different types of steak. The thing is, J and I tend to buy ground beef, or cubed steak (plus one time I bought chili ground beef, and once or twice I've bought roasts). So we're not fancy at all when it comes to nice steak. Not yet.
So far we've tried ground beef (which we added to our pasta sauce), a chuck roast, and just now I cooked some T-Bone steaks.
Each time we try something new, I learn how to cook it properly. As we eat, we discuss what part of the cow the meat comes from.* (Most delicious anatomy class ever!)
Today we learned about T-Bone steaks. J guessed that they came from a vertebrae...and he was right! The curve in the bone at the middle of the top of the T is the round part of the vertebrae.
T-Bone steaks are especially fancy because the meat on the different sides of the T are both desirable ones. The larger side of meat comes from the "short loin" and the smaller side comes from the "tenderloin**." Both the short loin and the tenderloin are on the sides of cows, just after the ribs.
When you cook T-Bone steaks, you're supposed to cook them dry, so your main options are to grilling and broiling. You don't have to worry about tenderizing these; they're already tender.
I decided to follow a recipe on the Food Network website. It was way easier than I thought it would be. You heat a little bit of oil in a pan. Salt and pepper your steaks. Put the steaks in your pan, and brown each side (it takes about 4 minutes for each side). Then, move them into a preheated 450 degree oven.*** Cook them until a thermometer reads 120 degrees. (They say 6-8 minutes for a medium-rare steak. I cooked mine for about 10-12 minutes for pretty well-done steaks.) Then take them out and let them cool 10 minutes and cut them off of the bone. (I omitted this step, and J and I each cut our own steaks off of the bones, because it wouldn't have felt like T-Bone steaks if I had pre-cut them. And it would have made them look much smaller.)
Results: I ate mine with steak sauce (after trying it without)**** and asparagus. J ate his plain (and without asparagus). We both thought it was very tasty.
1. Point to where your T-Bone steaks would be, if people had short loins and tenderloins. (Optional: point to a T-Bone on a real cow, or on any other willing and available model.)
2. Try cooking a T-Bone steak!
* Sometimes I use Chalcy to demonstrate. Is that awful, or what? She's big enough. Don't worry. We won't eat our dog.
** Filet mignon comes from the tenderloin, actually. Mmmm.
*** Yes, I used my toaster oven again. :)
**** Not because it tasted bad without it; I just love my A1.