The Best Steak — Outdoors

Adapted from a recipe in Shannon Hayes’ book Farmer and the Grill: A Guide to Grilling, Barbecuing and Spit-Roasting Grassfed Meat (Left To Write Press, 2007)

Ingredients:
1 steak, at least 1¼ to 1½ inches thick. Choose from sirloin, sirloin tip, tri tip, top round or London broil, rib eye, porterhouse, T-bone, top loin (N.Y. strip) or tenderloin (filet mignon).
1 to 2 tablespoons coarse salt
1 to 2 teaspoons ground black pepper
1 to 2 cloves garlic, minced
The amount of seasoning you use will vary, based on the size of the steak. If the steak is close to one pound, use less. If it is closer to 2 pounds, use more.

Directions:
Combine the salt, pepper and garlic in a small bowl. Rub the mixture into both sides of the steak and allow the meat to come to room temperature while you prepare the grill.

Start the grill and allow it to get hot. If you are using a gas grill, turn off all but one of the burners once it has come up to temperature. If you are using charcoal, be sure all the coals have been raked to one side. Use the hand test: the grate will be hot enough when you can hold your palm 3 to 4 inches above the metal for no more than three seconds.

Sear the steak for 2 to 3 minutes on each side directly over the flame, with the lid down.  Then move the steak to the part of grill that is not lit. Set the lid in place and allow the steak to cook, without flipping it, until it reaches 120 to 135 degrees, about 10 to 20 minutes, depending on the size of the steak. Remove the steak to a platter and allow it to rest a few minutes before serving.

The Best Steak — Indoors

This recipe is taken from Long Way on a Little: An Earth Lovers’ Companion for Enjoying Meat, Pinching Pennies and Living Deliciously, forthcoming from Shannon Hayes (Left to Write Press, 2011).

Ingredients:
1 steak, at least 1¼ to 1½ inches thick. Choose from sirloin, sirloin tip, tri tip, top round or London broil, rib eye, porterhouse, T-bone, top loin (N.Y. strip) or tenderloin (filet mignon).
1 to 2 tablespoons coarse salt
1 to 2 teaspoons ground black pepper
1 to 2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons butter, tallow or rendered lamb fat

The amount of seasoning you use will vary, based on the size of the steak. If the steak is close to one pound, use less. If it is closer to 2 pounds, use more.
Combine the salt, pepper and garlic in a small bowl. Rub the mixture into both sides of the steak and allow the meat to come to room temperature.

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees, then heat a large cast iron skillet or other oven-proof skillet over a high flame. Once the skillet is so hot that you can see a little smoke rising off of it, add the butter or fat. Sear the steak for two minutes on each side. Turn off the flame and insert an instant-read meat thermometer into the boneless edge of the steak — do not insert it into the top, as there is not enough thickness for the thermometer to take an accurate reading. Leaving the steak in the skillet, place it in the oven and allow it to finish cooking, about 10 to 20 minutes, depending on the size of the cut, until the internal temperature reads 120 to 135 degrees. Allow the meat to rest five minutes before carving and serving.