Updated: Jul 30
Let's talk steak.
You've ordered a mix pack from your favourite beef farmers, and now it has arrived. Packets of beef wrapped in paper fill your freezer, and while you're excited for some steak you have no idea where to start. Some of our customers have spent a long time in the steak game and know what they like. Others are brand new. So I wanted to give a brief intro to each of the steak cuts we do, and give a few tips and tricks for each of them. As we go, I'll be discussing the steaks in terms of flavour (how strong the natural beef flavour is), tenderness (the baseline of how easy the steak is to chew or cut), and consistency (how much uninterrupted muscle grain there is vs connective tissue). These are all important. Flavour usually comes at the cost of tenderness. The toughest beef is the most flavourful. Also, a particular cut can be extremely tender in the muscle but still be chewy if it has a lot of connective tissue. Striploin (aka New York, aka Strip) This is a good place to start, because it's one of the most well-known and common steaks that almost everyone has eaten somewhere. This steak is fairly tender, and very consistent. With just a little bit of trimming this can be worry-free chewing. It also has good flavour, which makes it a great all around easy steak. Sirloin This is very similar to the striploin and usually quite a large steak. It is very consistent and lean. Extremely flavourful but can have a little more chew than a strip. Outside Round (aka Bottom Round, aka Western) This is one of the tougher steaks on the list of our cuts. It's actually one of my favourite go-to's. It has more chew than most steak cuts but is due to being a high-use (read flavourful) muscle and not because of gristle or connective tissue. Sliced thinly it can still be tender. It also does well as a marinating steak. Rib Steak (aka Ribeye, aka Tomohawk, aka Cowboy) This steak has become very popular, maybe because it's a good all-around steak that can be cut so many ways. Ours are usually cut as rib steaks with bone-in. A ribeye is a trimmed rib steak, and Tomohawks and Cowboys are variations that leave long fancy bones attached. It's all the same beef. The rib steak is very tender, although if not trimmed correctly can have some chewy bites due to connective tissue. It's also mid range for flavour. Filet (aka Filet Mignon, aka Tenderloin) As tender as it gets, and truly melts in your mouth. This is because it is a muscle that gets essentially no work to do. Still flavourful, but not as much so as most of the other cuts.Very small steaks (sometimes called medallions). Flank This steak is great marinated or grilled, and is a good lesson in cutting 'across the grain' as it's very clear which way it goes. Slice it thinly for tenderness, it's great in fajitas and stir fries. Flat Iron (aka Petite Tender) A great little nugget of a steak. It's a bit of a pain for the butcher to cut out of the larger chuck but is a very tender and flavourful steak. Can have some connective tissue to be trimmed but a great steak. T-Bone (aka Porterhouse) We don't actually have these cut. Why? Because they're actually just a combination of some of the above cuts! A T-Bone is just a striploin and a filt with a T shaped bone in the middle. So we like to have them split into their distinctive steaks instead of one big package. So what do you do with all these steaks? Every steak has it's place, you just have to know what to expect from it and plan your meal based on your tastes. Steak doesn't have to just be grilled and thrown on a plate with mashed potatoes. Sliced, it can be made into lots of dishes - beef teriyaki anyone? My only request is that you cook it like the steak it is, and slice it AFTER to add it to a dish. Nothing beats that full steak sear! Do you have any recipes you've done that turned out to be a fantastic use of beef steaks? We're going to start sharing more of our recipes but would love to sprinkle in your ideas if you have any. We will be back in stock with steak and roasts in August, and it will likely go fast - so preorder now! We also have lots of ground beef on hand to keep you going until then :) Click here to shop now! All the best to you and yours! Willie & Jorie