The word steak was gotten from a Scandinavian word ‘steik’ which started in the mid-15th century. Steak refers to a meat that is cut across the muscle fibers, most times including a bone. Steaks are usually derived from ruminant animals that are reared like cattle, others include bison, camel, goat, horse, deer, sheep, ostrich, pigs, reindeer, and turkey. Other sources of steak include some types of fish, especially salmon and big sea fish like swordfish, shark, and marlin. For some particular type of meat that is referred to as chops, they are derived from pork, mutton, chevon, and veal. The first reference of steak in the Oxford Dictionary refers to it as "a thick slice of meat cut for roasting or grilling or frying, especially a piece cut from the hind-quarters of the animal".
Who Invented Steak?
The steak was first recorded as Salisbury steak, which was named after an American physician named James Salisbury. This happened during the Civil War, where he recommended that people should consume hamburger three times a day. The Salisbury steak consists of ground beef mixed with egg, milk, bread crumbs, and seasonings to make a large fritter and then cooked. James had to change the word ‘hamburger’ to Salisbury steak during World War 1 because of some political reasons.
The Best Meat for Steak?
Beef steaks are the most common type of steak meat that is consumed. Different types of beefsteak are known, and the cut of beef can be gotten from the loin and rib of the beef cattle. They can be prepared whole using dry heat. Unlike some other type of meats, beef does not need to be cooked through. Although the surface is prone to contamination especially when not properly handled, food-borne human illnesses are not normally found within a beef steak. Beefsteaks can be prepared either grilled or fried.
The Methods of Cooking
Cooking steak depends totally on the type of meat one is using, the method that would be applied for beefsteak would be different from that which will be used for tuna steak. Here are some general methods of cooking a steak that can be employed:
Applying the grilling method to steak preparation is quick, simple, and hard to mess up. All it is required of you is a grill either that of gas or charcoal, some steaks, salt, pepper, and oil. You prepare your grill, make sure it is clean and get it hot. Prepare the steak by applying oil and seasoning on both sides of the steak. When you are certain that the grill is hot, place the steak and leave them alone for a period of 3-5 minutes on each side, depending on how red you like them. When the cooking time is up, remove the steaks from the grill and let them rest for a few minutes covered in foil — then serve.
2. Pan Frying
This method of preparing steak is not different from grilling, except that it doesn't require you to go outside. Just like the grill, make sure your pan is hot. A cast-iron pan works best because they hold more heat. And the cooking times are similar as it is for grilling.
3. Sous vide steak
This involves the process of cooking meat that is placed into vacuum bags at a reduced temperature in hot water. Water temperature is usually set to 120 degrees, and cooked for about 1-2 hours. When you use a vacuum-sealed bag, the juices and any seasoning applied is a seal in with the meat, and it has nowhere to go but into the meat.
Sear-roasting is a method of cooking steak whereby the oven and cast-iron skillet are pre-heated at a temperature of 260°C. When the two are very hot, you place a buttered or oiled steak in the hot iron, cook it on the two sides, and then to finish the cooking, you place it inside the oven.
5. Butter Steak
The butter steak method is one under the pan fry method, only that you do not use oil, instead, you use butter. Your main ingredient which is the steak is ready, and like for others also you get your iron cast on heat but in this case without oil. When the pan gets heated enough, you add the steaks and some amount of butter with crushed garlic.
While cooking, you add seasoning and continue to baste and turn the steak regularly with butter to ensure even heating.
How long should you rest the Steak?
To ensure proper resting of the steak, you remove from the hot surface and place it on a plate. Ensure you cover the meat slightly if covered to tight, the meat will lose some of its cherished moisture. The amount of time needed to rest a steak depends on its size. The common rule applied is that a minute time of rest should be given to 100g of steak meat.
What is it served best with?
Steak can be served alongside various dressings, depending wholly on the preference of the consumer. Steak is best served alongside grilled vegetables; comprising of green beans, asparagus, red pepper, red onion, and the likes. You cook the vegetables in a hot fry pan for 4-5 minutes and then serve hot with the rested steak.
As explained earlier, there is a different cut of meat used to prepare steak, and its preparation depends on what the person cooking it wants. Other than the methods of cooking listed above, other available methods are; steak tartare, coal-roasted steak mummy, broiling and so on. No matter the type of meat you intend to use for your steak, make sure you get the part that is tender and has marbled fat so as to get the juicy taste when you consuming.