Don’t forgo your steak just because beef prices are high at the moment, change the beef cut you're putting in the pan or on your BBQ. You just might open up a whole new brilliant carnivorous world for yourself.
Less well known and cheaper cuts don’t just mean slow cooking, it can mean grilling too. We can get a little stuck in our ways here in Australia and tend to think steaks come only in the form of T Bones, rumps and sirloins, but consider the list below. Taking a lead from countries like Argentina, there’s a whole new world to uncover and with a few cooking tips, you may well find you have a new favourite steak cut and change in your pocket too.
Hanger or Onglet
Known as Hanger in the USA and Onglet in France this cut has also been called “the butcher’s cut” which gives you a clue as to its quality. One of the most flavoursome cuts there is. It does require some small tweaks in cooking and is not a steak that suits being cooked past medium. This cut is best cooked fast and hot with a good, long rest to allow the juices to settle – you should be looking to rest it for nearly as long as it was on the hot grill.
Another tip is to make sure you locate the grain of the hanger and slice across it for an even more tender result. This simple action can make all the difference in your eating experience.
Flat Iron is the US name for a cut that is also called the “Feather steak” in the UK. Its source is a surprise to many as it is found through some skilled butchery of the oyster blade. Once all the silverskin and gristle is removed from an oyster blade it actually becomes a delicious, tender, often well-marbled steak that compares in quality to Scotch Fillet. A flat iron can be cooked as any other steak and is probably best cooked past rare and as much as medium well done.
Skirt steak is one of the absolute favourites in South American cooking. The best way to cook these cuts could best be described as slow chargrilling. Over charcoal is the best way to get maximum flavour, but taking your time and grilling to medium and slicing across the grain will also add to a truly flavoursome steak experience. Skirt is probably the toughest of these lesser known steak options, but certainly makes up for it in extra flavour.
Flank or “bavette” in French parlance is a very lean cut that once again suits slow chargrilling in the same manner as Skirt. While it is important to also slice across the grain, the resulting steak is a little more tender than you will find with the skirt. Best enjoyed medium rare or rare.
So, why not give an alternative cut a try? Just ask Feast! staff for the cut you’re interested in. They may even have some extra tips for you, but if you want the ultimate in grilling instruction, join our very own Meat Guru, Richard Gunner in the hands-on Feast! Fine Foods Mastering the Grill Class. Please see our Sausage Making and Butchery Classes here on the webiste for the next schedule grilling class.