Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation

How to cook the perfect steak


Under the category, 'things men must master before they expire' nestled alongside 'open a bottle of wine with a shoe' and 'make a massive fire' is the small matter of cooking the perfect steak. Which is precisely why we sat down with chef Mitch Tonks to reveal the five simple steps to meat heaven. There's even a recipe and wine recommendation to help get you started.

1. The meat

Find yourself a great bit of meat. Whichever cut you like best. I like rib-eyes because of the fat content. Make sure you look for a really nice marbling of fat throughout the meat. Fat’s all important to enjoying a good steak. The flavour comes from the fat. You’re looking for something that’s been hung for a minimum of 21 days, that tenderises the meat and allows it to mature. Look out for meat with yellowing fat as well. In my opinion, that tends to have the most flavour, and you get this lovely rendering of fat into the pan. I use a local bread called a Devon Red crossed with a Limousin which is a French cow. But mainly, the type of beef that’s good for this is Aberdeen Angus.

2. Prep

There’s many schools of thought saying not to season the beef before you cook it. But I like to season it. Rub the steak with olive oil and then season with plenty of salt and coarsely ground black pepper. Get a frying pan really hot. Take a pair of tongs and sear the fat running the length of the steak until that gets a nice crisp look and has rendered into the pan, that means you’ve got a little bit of hot fat in the pan for flavour.

3. Cooking

Now that the pan is hot – not too hot so that everything burns but not to cold so that the meat boils in its own juices – flip the steak onto its side. If it’s an inch thick do three to four minutes on one side. Turn it, and then what you’re looking for is a crispy, exterior, a bit of caramelisation of the meat and then repeat on the other side. If it’s a really thick piece of meat, pop the whole pan in the oven for seven or eight minutes.

4. Resting

The most important thing when cooking a steak is you’ve got to let the steak rest. What you want is for the heat to have got to the centre of the meat. Leave the meat in a warm place, on top of the cooker with the heat off is fine. Let that rest for a good ten minutes. It’s very important. What’s happening, when the steak has gone in to the pan all of its fibres have just tensed up – by allowing it to relax you’re letting the meat to relax, the juices to start flowing out, and the meat to continue cooking and you really get that evenness of cooking all the way through.

5. Serve

Pop it on to a plate, whole or sliced, and you should have a couple of tablespoons of juices in the pan to spoon over. Serve.

Recipe - Grilled sirloin of beef with anchovy butter

You will need

2 sirloin steaks

100g softened butter

3 or 4 salted anchovy fillets

1 clove of garlic

1 tablespoon of chopped parsley

1 teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce

To Make

Mash the anchovy fillets with the garlic in a pestle and mortar and stir in the softened butter. Add the chopped parsley and the Worcestershire sauce, mix well then chill for half an hour. Next, grill the sirloin steaks to your liking in a hot griddle pan then place a good slice of the butter on the meat while it rests. Allow the seasoned butter to melt and combine with the meat’s juices.

This is a deliciously simple meal best served with seasonal greens and a glass of Redwood Creek Merlot - a fantastic wine match with juicy flavours of ripe cherries and blackberries and hints vanilla and spice that complement the butter notes in the dish.



The Ultimate Steak Manual


How to make the perfect burger


The 10 Commandments of Steak



The Crème Egg Scotch Egg is a legitimate thing now

These look equal parts amazing and deadly

22 Feb 2017

There's a subreddit dedicated to eating oranges in the shower

Simply the zest

21 Feb 2017

Someone's made rum ham and milk steak from "Always Sunny"

"I'm sorry rum ham!"

by Alex Finnis
21 Feb 2017

The president of Iceland wants to ban pineapple on pizza

The whole country, not the supermarket

by Emily Badiozzaman
21 Feb 2017

A workmen's cafe just accidentally got a Michelin star

Business briefly boomed

by Gary Ogden
20 Feb 2017

This graphic of Nutella's ingredients will ruin it for you forever

Nothing you love can survive.

by Sam Diss
17 Feb 2017

11 of the world's most insane Michelin-starred restaurants

From unassuming venues to downright wacky dishes

by Keyan Milanian
15 Feb 2017

Burger King are handing out sex toys with meals

The fast food chain is offering cheeky gifts with the special Valentine's meals

14 Feb 2017

LEGO superfans just opened a restaurant selling 'brick burgers'

McDonald’s must be bricking it

by Joe Ellison
09 Feb 2017

A pizza made of fried chicken might soon be in your mouth

Eat this and immediately die happy

by Gary Ogden
08 Feb 2017