Cooking steak is actually a two-part process which most people try to do at one time. That makes it difficult to achieve phenomenal results because it requires almost perfect timing. It is much easier to tackle the steps of cooking the interior and the exterior separately and achieve perfect results. Cooking the inside of the steak should be done slowly and at a low heat to avoid overcooking and the outside should be seared at a very high temperature to produce the Maillard reactions that brown the steak and chemically give it the look and flavor that we expect.
As such I’m going show you how to do this with means that most people have. Later, after I have acquired a sous vide setup, I will do it again with a slightly different method. Someday I will also do it on a grill to show you that sweetness.
Also I did not marinate, cure, or use a rub on this steak. But you can rub, cure, or marinate this steak before you do anything in this recipe.
What you’ll need:
A digital thermometer with an oven-safe probe
A baking sheet or a rack.
A skillet for searing and a conventional Oven for baking
A Beef Steak about 1 inch thick – I used a 1lb. Wagyu ‘Flat Iron’ Steak (a.k.a. Butler, Top Boneless Chuck, Shoulder Tip Blade, Top Blade, Butler)
A Neutral Oil (i.e. beef tallow, canola, corn oil, etc.) – I used clarified butter
Optionally – Butter and Salt – I suggest Maldon and I used their smoked shaved sea-salt
Depending on the reliability of your oven this whole process will take about 90min-120min but only 10-20min of actual work are required.
Now we start!
Firstly you’ll need to make room in your freezer and put your steak on a baking sheet and put said baking sheet with the steak in your freezer for 30min. You’re freezing the outer layer of your steak to prevent overcooking of the inside during the searing process. Pre-heat your oven to 160° F/70° C (or the the lowest setting) when it is getting close to 30min.
After 30 minutes have passed begin heating your dry skillet on high heat and pull your steak out of the freezer. Brush over it with your neutral oil on both sides. You will notice that the oil freezes to the steak making a white coating on your steak.
Begin your searing in the pan that is on high heat. Sear both sides until they begin turning dark brown. Press down on the steak to ensure even browning and feel free to do so if you want sear the edges. Each side will take roughly 60 seconds.
After you have seared your steak transfer it to your baking sheet or rack. Insert the oven-safe probe of your digital thermometer into the thickest part of your steak (just one if you’re doing more than that). Place your steak(s) in your oven and cook them to your desired core temperature.
For most beef steaks the core temperatures look like this:
Rare 129° F / 54° C (Filet 122° F / 50° C)
Medium Rare 133° F / 56° C (Filet 127° F / 53° C)
Pink 138° F / 59° C (Filet 133 ° F / 56° C)
Medium 144° F / 62° C (Same for Filet)
Check your steak about once every minute when it get within about 10° F so as to prevent overcooking. The time it takes to reach this core temperature will vary greatly depending on the thickness of your steak.
Optionally brush over the steaks with melted butter and season generously with salt.
You can do this with frozen steaks as well. For the first step you need to heat a neutral frying oil to it’s smoke point and sear at least one side of your frozen steak. Then start at the point where you put it on a rack or baking sheet and throw it in the oven. Realize though that it being frozen will add roughly 20-30min to the overall cooking time.