primal grilling and the monster ribeye

From 2011-07-13

For my b-day, I decided to treat myself to the biggest hunk of steak I could find and put it on the egg. But you can’t just throw these on and hope for the best. It requires some planning.

  1. The first issue was what to season with and when. Given the quality of the meat cut, I low-balled it and went with salt and pepper alone.
  2. Next comes the question of when to season/flavor. For best results, you have two choices: either salt immediately or approximately an hour or more before. After reading the Serious Eats Foodlab take on this, I’m convinced that the earlier the better. I leave them out at room air for at least an hour before grilling. It needs that long to come up to a warmer temperature so you get the brown crust, completely pink center. If you don’t have that much time, salt it immediately before cooking or during cooking.
  3. The last think you want is burned outside, raw inside.  To combat this I did the opposite of the typical pan roasting technique.
From 2011-07-13

I covered them with foil, and put them on a sheetpan. In a 300F oven, they roasted until the interior temperature was 108F. I used my wired probe thermometer to make sure I was at the right temperature, and of the two steaks, I tested the thinner of the two.

From 2011-07-13

The result was par-cooked steaks that needed some browning to finish. I allowed them to rest a while, and predictably, the temperature rose about 10 degrees. Now we’ve talked about finishing temperatures before. I was shooting for a finishing temp in the low 130’s. Remember that these are ribeyes, and they have a lot of fat. They’ll taste better if that fat renders, and so will do better at a higher temperature than rare or medium-rare. On the contrary, the grass-fed beef has very less fat and needs to be cooked under what you would expect.

4.  The next question is grill setup.  My goal was to to blast them, t-rex style.  The easiest way to do this is to invert my elevated grid and put a good load of charcoal in to high heat.

From 2011-07-13

5. Duration of cooking becomes the next question. You can see that I left my probe thermometer in place. These things set the fire ablaze in a huge way, such that they were engulfed by flames. Make sure you’ve got a long oven mitt and the longest tongs you can find before you take this project on, or else you might find yourself without eyebrows or arm hair.

From 2011-07-13

Remember the principles of grease fires: deprive oxygen if it gets out of hand. You do that by closing the grill, closing the vents and waiting. Beware of backdraft, because it’s real.
6. Never…! I mean ALWAYS…rest the meat. 5-10 should do the trick, some advocate resting for 1/2 the time it took them to cook. The juices and proteins are rearranging themselves at this point. If you cut into it too early, you’ll rob yourself of moisture.

From 2011-07-13

 

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6 thoughts on “primal grilling and the monster ribeye

  1. I like to do the regular T-rex with the HIGH temp sear first, a good rest, and then a roast/grill at much lower temps to finish off.

    DAMN, good looking piece of meat there. Don’t have anywhere in immediate area where one can get really good prime cuts cut that thick without getting them special ordered. Some young couple have opened a fish/meat market at the foot of signal mtn. that reportedly has good prime cuts on a regular basis but it’s an hour round trip to get there so I’ve not ventured forth yet.

    Have you ever ordered from Lobel’s at http://www.lobels.com ? Incredible meat . . . but at incredible prices. It’s a once or twice a year thing for me.

  2. Doing it with the roasting first is a little more like sous vide. We found a steakhouse here that is doing a lot if not all of their proteins sous vide, and then finishing it to whatever temp you request to order. Also, it browns better when warm as opposed to cold out of the fridge. You’re probably only looking at a few mm difference. For me the goal is browned/seared on the outside and pink center.
    I’ve never ordered from Lobel’s or Omaha or anything like that. The only special orders have been from local farmers, but the butchery is sub-par.
    Surely there’s something in Chattanooga, or a local farmer’s market that you can special order.

  3. also, have you ever tried to special order stuff from your local supermarket? They kinda/sorta have butchers, although it’s a dying art.

  4. Yeah, I can get stuff if I special order it from any number of places. Suprisingly our new Costco has prime cuts most weekends but you’re forced to buy 3-4 steaks. They do cut them 1 1/2 to 2 inches thick on their ribeyes yielding on average an 18oz steak. Problem is I don’t plan enough ahead to special order the stuff from other butchers and would like it available on an as needed basis. The local Fresh Market has ordered stuff for me in the past, particularly whole prime standing rib roasts but that gets $$$. Can really tell the difference in it from a choice cut though.

    Using Lobel’s in the same category as Omaha steaks is blasphemy. They’re aren’t even playing the same game. Lobels is an old school butcher/meat supplier in NYC that supplies many of the high end steak houses in NYC. They deal ONLY in prime cuts and if you suggested they freeze something they’d shoot you in the head. They only ship overnight so you have to order Sun-Thur. All the meat is dry aged as well. It is without a doubt the best I’ve ever personally gotten to cook. Be prepared to drop some serious coin.

    I’d rather have my local BiLo’s choice cuts than anything from Omaha steaks or other similar products as neither seem to be very good.

  5. Never tried beef, but we always dry-age our venison in the fridge before final butchering. Typically cut into almost final product, patted dry, left in the bottom drawer of the fridge ,which has a tapered bottom, where all the liquid would collect. Take it out once or twice over a week or more to pat it dry again. Once it has a nice brown exterior, we would cut it into the final product and cook, or freeze. Simple process, but i’m not sure that’s how you would do beef, or technically whether you would call this dry-aging.

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