Cutting into a steak.
17 Tips For Obtaining The Perfect Sear On Your Steak
1. Let The Steak Come To Room Temperature
Both the temperature of the pan and the meat can have a huge impact on your steak turns out. A hot pan combined with cold meat means you may end up with dry steak.
The thinner parts of the steak will overcook by time the chilled interior is properly cooked. The shock of heat can also make muscle fibers contract, creating a chewy texture.
2. Make Sure The Steak Is Dry
Moisture or a wet marinade on the surface of the steak means it won't adhere to your skillet or grill. In turn, your meat will cook without the searing that makes it delicious.
The excess liquid cools down the hot metal, inhibiting caramelization and a nice crust. A quick pat down with paper towels can dry your steak properly for better results.
3. Salt It Beforehand
To salt steak properly, dry the outside as previously mentioned, then season both sides with a generous amount of coarse salt (not table salt) and freshly cracked pepper.
Press the seasonings into the meat with the palm of your hand. This will add loads of flavor and amp up the texture of the crisply-seared exterior.
4. Know Your Cuts
Fat equals flavor and juiciness, so fattier cuts like ribeye or New York strip are popular for high-heat grilling. Other cuts flank steak need different treatment.
Flank needs to be sliced across the grain after cooking for best results. A T-bone steak should have the bone removed if you cook it in a pan, since the bone can inhibit browning.
5. Buy Thicker Cuts Of Meat
The more marbled a piece of steak is, the more time it can sit over high heat. Cuts with less marbling, like filet mignon, should be cut into thicker pieces before cooking.
A thicker piece gives you more wiggle room when cooking a lean cut, allowing you to achieve a deep sear without drying out the interior, which would happen with a thinner piece.