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How to Season and Cook Steak

Understanding Spices

Having guests over for dinner? Steak is always a winner. A juicy, perfectly seasoned and cooked steak is a luxury that most of us usually only enjoy at a restaurant. But steaks are pretty straightforward to season and cook and shouldn’t be intimidating at all. Plus, serving up the perfect home cooked steak can make you look like a total pro.

Different types of Steak

Before you get cooking, it’s important to know what the different cuts of steak are. By definition, a steak is a slice of meat generally cut from the muscle fibres of an animal (most usually beef). Steaks come in a variety of cuts and price points, some of the most common steak cuts being tenderloin (Fillet steak), Sirloin, T-bone, Ribeye, Flank (Bavette) steak and Skirt steak.

Before Cooking

Although seasoning is key, steaks don’t actually need too much. Salt is one of the ingredients you shouldn’t shy away from when seasoning steaks. A good quality salt like Sel Gris or a sea salt is always best, as the size of its crystals is perfect for drawing out the moisture from meat. Both sides of the steak should be coated with salt, plus freshly ground black peppercorns. Don’t be afraid to use salt generously! If you do want to add a little more than just salt, then try rubbing in pepper, garlic powder, paprika or chilli powder. Before frying, brush the steak all over with a generous glug of olive oil.

Flank and skirt steaks take well to marinades. Some of the most popular marinades use ingredients like dijon mustard, balsamic vinegar, olive oil and Worcestershire sauce. Add in fresh or dried herbs such as rosemary, thyme, oregano and marjoram for extra flavour and aroma.

How to Season Steak

Why not elevate your steak to a whole new level of experience?

The following are six seasonings that make ideal pairings with steak. Each one brings a unique flavour. Experiment and find your favourite!

Mexican Adobo

The bold, vibrant flavours of Adobo portray Mexican Cuisine at its best. Generously coat the steak with this rub – dry (just as it is) or wet (with oil/ butter for better adherence) or mix with lemon/lime juice and garlic for a special marinade.  Cover with clingfilm and leave in the fridge for up to twelve hours. The resultant blend of smokiness and heat with earthy undertones is an authentic, punchy taste of Mexico.

Cajun Blackening

From the southern United States, Cajun Blackening imparts a strong, rich, complex, spicy flavour to steak without too much heat. Combine with oil or vinegar (white or cider), lemon (orange or lime) juice and marinate for at least an hour – if possible- longer. Searing with hot heat will leave a dark crusty coating on the steak – and a craving for more!

Chilean Alino

A treat for the tastebuds – this South American blend of herbs with its sweet and tart profile – is a little bit of magic from Chilli. Its use as a table condiment (as we use salt and pepper) – is testament to its enduring popularity. As a dry or wet rub rub or mixed with olive oil, it makes a fantastic infusion or marinade.

Roasted Garlic Salt

The two iconic flavours of garlic and salt make a strong, punchy and versatile culinary essential in the form of Roasted Garlic Salt. Liberally sprinkled over steak or mixed with oil to make a marinade (covered and allowed to infuse) for at least an hour in the fridge, this steak ‘treatment’ demonstrates the harmonious marriage of two great flavours. Delicious!

Himalayan Pink Salt

A wonderful alternative to table salt, these hard jewel-like rock crystals require a salt grinder. With a subtle, sweet flavour, these pale pink ‘gems’ are hand-mined, incredibly pure and mineral rich. Coarser than table salt it is less likely that you will use too much. Complemented with a generous amount of coarsely ground black peppercorns, the result is a distinctive, yet classic, harmonious blend!

Sage

A very simple way to season steak is with sage. The musky, peppery taste and aroma of this ever popular herb works really well. Mix together softened, unsalted, good quality butter with dried sage, minced garlic and Himalayan Pink salt.  For a rich, tasty result spread the sage butter over the steaks prior to cooking or, having allowed it to harden in the fridge, garnish the steaks after cooking when they have been allowed to rest. Alternatively fry the sage butter until it begins to brown (being careful not to let it burn) and then cook the steaks in it or pour it over them after the resting time at the end.

Be adventurous! Embark on your own culinary journey and create the perfectly seasoned steak! Why not buy our steak seasoning spice bundle which includes all of the items above.

Steak Seasoning spice bundle from Seasoned Pioneers containg 6 products to compliment steak

How to Cook Steak

  1. Heat your pan or griddle so that it is hot. If you’re grilling your steak, make sure your grill is clean and give it a brush with cooking oil so that the steak doesn’t stick.
  1. Make sure your steak is at room temperature before you place it in the pan, otherwise the inside will take longer to cook. It’s important not to cook more than two steaks at a time, and keep them spaced apart. Overcrowding the pan will cause the temperature to drop and you won’t get a nice, caramelised outside.

Remember to turn the steak every minute for an even cook. As a rule of thumb, here’s how long you should cook steak for, based on a 2cm – 3cm thick steak:

  • Rare: 1 minute on each side
  • Medium rare: 2 minutes on each side
  • Medium: 3 minutes on each side
  • Medium well: 4 minutes on each side
  • Well done: 6 minutes on each side
  1. Before serving, leave the steak to rest for around 2 minutes to let the juices soak back into the steak. To add even more flavour, you can also rub some butter over the steak and let it soak in.
  1. Up the ante by serving steaks with a range of sauces. Here are some simple yet delicious sauces you can make in under 25 minutes:
  • Salsa verde
  • Black bean & sesame sauce
  • Chimichurri
  • Red wine sauce
  • Teriyaki sauce
  • Blue cheese sauce

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