Do you know to cook flank steak properly?
Flank steak is famous for its great taste – and how hard it can be if not cooked properly. With just a little knowledge, it becomes easier to master how to cook flank steak.
So, what is the secret in cooking flank steak? The best way to cook flank steak is probably grilling, but you can also pan-sear it in a skillet or put it in your oven. A real trick is to keep your steak grill time short; this little cut is best cooked rare or medium rare.
Next, you will also know how to cut a flank steak. Why? The muscle fibers in a flank steak are very strong and can be very difficult to cut. However, there is a simple solution – learning to cut a flank steak against the grain. I will show you all my tips and tricks to get a delicious, juicy and soft flank steak, wrapped outside or under a broiler!
Use these tips and also a meat thermometer and you will soon be famous for your amazing flank steak! All you need to know is in the instructions below.
Marinade Makes Flank Tender
This is a hard and chewing cut, so the marinade does a double job here, both to soften and to give the meat some flavor. The proportions for a simple marinade are in the recipe below, but any marinade will do. I like to marinade a flank steak for at least an hour, or up to 24 hours. You can also marinate and then put in the fridge before bed or work.
How to cut Flank steak
Flank steak is made up of long and thin muscles that run all the same way. It is called the “grain” of meat. It is important to cut these pieces into short pieces so that your teeth do not do all the work. For tender flank steak, cut the meat into small pieces 1/4 inch “by side” and “against the grain .”
You should be cutting at a 45 degree angle, not directly up and down as you will cut a bread. (This increases the surface area of each bite, and shortens the muscle fibers, improving softness.) And it looks better until it is delivered.
Against grain means that your knife should cut directly into the muscle lines (“grain”) of the flank steak. Your knife should cut where the black lines are (only much thinner slices).
1 1/2 pound flank steak
Fresh ground black pepper
Step by step instruction
- Remove the steam from the fridge for half an hour before cooking. Cut any hard tissue that connects to the surface of the steak. Using the tip of a sharp knife, make small cuts into the meat, almost all the way. The cut should be at an angle, in the direction of the grain of the meat as the tip of the knife penetrates. The cuts should be about inches in each other. Turn over the steak and repeat the cuts on the other side. Make sure that the cuts you make on one side are the same as the cuts you made on the other side, otherwise you may cut off an existing cut, and end up with a hole in the meat.
- Rub salt, pepper, dried mustard and butter: Sprinkle one side of the flank steak with salt and freshly ground pepper. Sprinkle with dry mustard. Regular mustard can also be used incase you don’t have the dry one. Sprinkle a tablespoon of butter on each side of the steak. Turn the steak over and repeat with the dried mustard, pepper, and butter.
- Sear steak in a hot frying pan: Heat a large frying iron pan over high heat. Put the steak in a hot pan. Sear until it is well browned for 2 to 3 minutes. Use tongs to lift it up to check it is properly browned, if is then flip to the other side and sear for 2 minutes as well.
- Remove from the heat: Remove the pan from the heat and let the steak continue to cook for 5 to 10 minutes on the residual heat of the pan.
- Use the tip of your fingers to check donations or place a thermometer in the thickest part of the steak – 120°F for very rare, 125°F for rare, or 130°F for medium rare. Serve your flank steak rare or medium rare. Otherwise it may be too dry. If the steak is not done enough as you like, return the steak and pan to medium heat for a few minutes.
- Allow the steak to rest: Remove the steak from the pan to the cutting board and allow to rest for 10 minutes, covered with aluminum foil.
- Cut the meat into very small slices, at an angle, across from the grain of meat. (In this way you break through the strong fibers of the muscle fibers.)
- Any juices that come out of the meat while cutting or resting, return to the pan. Return the pan to the heat when it is very hot and heat the pan with a little water, scraping out any brown pieces. When the water has boiled, add a little butter to the pan with a good sauce.
- Arrange the sliced meat on a serving plate and pour the juices into the pan on top of the meat.
And there you have it! That’s really easy! Knowing how to cook flank steak is not really difficult as long as you know the rules.