It's grilling weather!

Last night was the first decent grilling weather we've had in a while, so I took advantage of it. I've gotten fairly good at steak grilling no matter the platform; gas, charcoal briquette, lump charcoal, or cast iron sear. But, there's one thing that Laura taught me about steak prep that has taken my steaks to a new level. That's the use of olive oil.

  • First off, I prefer a strip steak, like New York or Kansas City. Nothing against a good T-bone or Porterhouse, and, I might add, I love grilling a thick Tomahawk, and there's a special way to do it...but that's for another time
  • The steak should be at least 2" thick, but I can deal with 1-1/2"
  • Two hours before grilling, take the steak from the fridge and place into a glass baking pan, where you'll drizzle with olive oil and brush to thoroughly coat on the first side
  • Grind fresh peppercorns over top
    • I use coarse grind for steaks
  • Grind a garlic/salt mixture over top
  • Flip and repeat
  • Cover and let set on the counter until it's time to grill, because you want it to be room temperature
  • 20 minutes before the time to grill, prep it and get it started
    • You want a hot, hot fire for this, so make sure you have plenty of time for preheating
  • For my medium rare steak, I grill each side for six minutes, and then come back to each side for another 60-90 seconds to get the crosshatch grill marks
  • For a rare steak, make it 4-5 minutes and 60 seconds
  • For a medium steak, make it 8 minutes and 90 seconds
  • For a medium well steak, make it 10 minutes and 2 minutes
  • For a well done steak (why you would want this, I do not know) make it 12 minutes and 3 minutes
  • You should grill with the lid open if at all possible, and keep an eye on fires
    • A fire from fat dripping can create a really bitter flavor if you don't tend to it, so move the steak as you need to in order to get it away from flames
  • Rest the meat for at least 5 minutes
Steak Bite

Photo: Getty Images

I rarely, if ever, marinate my steak. I really love the flavor of beef and want nothing to stand in the way of that flavor. I know people who eat their steak with catsup, with steak sauce, or even Worchestshire. To me, they're not complimenting the flavor, they're trying to cover it up. If anything, a Béarnaise sauce is just about right, and used sparingly.

As for side, a baked potato and salad, plus a veggie like peas and carrots or grilled asparagus drizzled with balsamic and a dusting of Parm-Reggiano. Finally, it's important that you season correctly! The thicker the cut, the more salt you have to use.

Grilling season is here! Some people say it never get on it, and bon appetit!


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