My son had an unbelievably tender rib eye at a nice restaurant. Any idea how the restaurant insured the flavor and tenderness? The restaurant was Cuba Libre, Dallas, TX.
Holly from Richardson, TX
It depends on the age, the quality (choice=good, prime=really tender and tasty), and how long the meat was aged. Good restaurants will get well aged prime steak. Cheaper restaurants will use meat tenderizer to tenderize a cheaper cut.
A butcher will be able to ensure a better cut of meat, at least that is the way around here in Nor. Cal, over than say Safeway or Nob Hill (Raleys'). A good rib eye (my FAVORITE) needs a little pepper, some garlic seasoning. Try not to salt ahead of time as it brings the juices to the top. If you season your meat with a rub with salt and let sit, dab the juices before you cook. Salting later on is better for the meat. Also take off BEFORE it's done to your liking, steaks need at least 5 minutes to rest and let the juices redistribute (don't cut before then) and the cooking continues, generally another 5 degrees or so.
They probably cooked it in some water - fill the pan it is cooked in with some water, one beef boullion cube per cup of liquid added and never, ever let "it" go dry throughout the entire cooking process. This is how I do my pot roasts and the water then makes a good gravy from the pan drippings and the added boullion cube flavoring.
First, start with "USDA Choice" or better, but even that is no guarentee it will be tender so check the marbling; that's the best way to get a tender steak. Then I like to rub them well with crushed garlic and freshly ground black pepper and allow them to come to room temp. Heat a *dry* cast iron griddle or skillet on high until blistering hot and sprinkle salt liberally on its surface and quickly sear the steaks on this, resalting griddle when turning to sear the other side. If your griddle is hot enough you need only sear for a few seconds on each side.
Note that I didn't salt the steak itself, just the griddle. The combination of salt and very high heat seals the juices into the meat. When properly seared remove from the griddle and finish on a hot grill of your choice (I prefer charcoal with a few mesquite chips added), being very careful not to overcook. I like my steak very rare so often I skip the grill and just sear them, but a very brief pass on the grill (espically with the mesquite) adds a nice flavor.
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